You left out one very important style of bike - the recumbent. They come in 2 and 3 wheelers. I have a two wheeler and love mine. I ride so much more than I did on my road bike.
11/9/2011 1:26:08 PM
I agree with many of the preceding comments that much more thought should have gone into this article. Failure to mention recumbents was the thing that stood out to me. However, there were a number of other issues that could have been mentioned that were not, many already noted. I think SAFETY should have been stressed much more. Having a properly fitting helmet and wearing it are essential. I had two accidents this summer that would have been severe if I had not been wearing a helmet. But there are many other issues in terms of proper clothing, obeying traffic rules, and proper riding techniques that should be addressed or referred to another article for further info.
@ Beatletot - for a triathlon you would want a time trial bike OR a very aero road bike. Cervelo (www.cervelo.com) makes the fastest time trial and road bikes on the market today. As an avid cyclist (3,000 - 4,000 miles per year), I was hugely disappointed in this article. It was not well written nor researched. I'd like to know when the authors threw a leg over a bike last. The biggest tips for buying a bicycle is to go to a Local Bike Shop (LBS) not Wal-Mart or Target, Be prepared to spend money and get a proper bike fit from a certified bike fit professional - and make sure part of that fit includes a saddle fitting too. There are bikes for every budget, but when you pay more you get more, just like with a car. The lighter the bike, the more comfotable it will be and you'll see an equally higher price too.
Oh and learn to wear a helmet properly. They DO NOT sit, tipped back onto the rear of one's head. Anyway that is my .02.
Not only are recumbents a niche bike they tend to be extremely expensive. Usually this is sought by someone who for various health and comfort reasons just cannot make any of the other types of bikes "work" for themselves.
It is OH-SO-IMPORTANT to work with your local bike shop in choosing a bike as they may help you explore issues and angles you may not have thought of in selecting your bike.
For instance I thought I would want a hybrid bike because I thought I would be too uncomfortable with a road / touring bike with drop-down handlebars. However after discussing with the LBS and other experienced cyclists my desire to cycle longer distances (50+ miles) I received much encouragement to consider a road bike with drop-down handlebars. Taking the plunge I can now say in hindsight that this was SUCH a smart move! My hands used to go numb on my old mountain bike. With the various hand positions offered on my drop-down handlebars I no longer have this problem. PLUS the improvement in SPEED! Woo hoo!
We each have our own personal goals, preferences and motivations which draw us to cycling. Your LBS will tremendously help you begin to hone in on this and make a bike choice that best suits your needs.
Same as several other people who have commented, I feel it was a huge let-down that recumbent bikes were completely ignored. The two-wheeled recumbents seem a little scary (how do you balance when laying back?), but you learn how to do it. The trikes are incredible - so comfortable and easy to ride.
What better way to ride over 2,000 miles in 2 months than on recumbent bikes? Several of my family members just did that! They put in some long, hard days and it was really cold to ride bikes over mountaintops, but they made it through everything.
Hey..I looked at this article hoping I could find some type of home stationary bike to help burn calories and to replace the bike I have at home..which loosing it's just...but quick..thanks a lot for this useless article..I guess I have to spend time.."Googleing it..ooops...spell check...and this artical...check!!
6/7/2010 5:00:44 PM
I agree with Rick! I found the article disappointing in that it omitted mention of recumbents. Also, what about trikes? There are some very high performance recumbent trikes out there, Catrike being one brand.
6/7/2010 4:25:31 PM
This is a sad, sad article, the descriptions of the bike types doesn't include how pathetic hybrid biikes are, not good for anything...
She doesn;t een mention cyclocross bikes, road-bike geometry with thin knobby tires, and beefed up frames.
These are perfect for road and light train riding, I would never buy a comfort bike for anyone under 70....
Yeah, info on recumbent bikes would have been great. I love mine; I had not been able to ride a traditional bike without excruciating, screaming back pain for over 6 years. My 'bent has me pedaling again, and I was also able to ride a lot further than I ever could on a traditional bike on my very first 'bent ride!
5/12/2009 9:27:49 AM
Also not mentioned are the new "fitness bikes." These are a riff on the hybrid bikes described but have characteristics similar to road bikes without the drop handlebars. Fitness bikes are a great option for people who want something light weight and comfortable, but who want to be able to cruise the bike paths quickly. They're going to start right around $350.
2/10/2009 12:18:46 PM
Recumbent bikes are a nitch market. It is true that they work out great for a few cyclists for the most part an upright bike is a better choice.
As far as materials go, beginners really don't have to consider this. The vast majority of low end bike shop frames are aluminum now because they are light and inexpensive to produce. Steel frames mostly exist at the extreme low and high ends of the market. Department store bikes with stove pipe frames and hand built boutique bikes. Carbon fibre and titanium bikes are very dear.
New cyclists are best off going to the best bike shop in town and building a relationship there. It isn't worth it to save a few bucks and buy from a cheesy bike shop that will not stand behind their products or go out of business shortly.
Too bad there was nothing about Recumbents. They're a GREAT alternative for people who can't tolerate an upright reating position due to back problems or shoulder/ wrist/ neck issues. Though recumbents are certainly pricier, because they are so much more comfortable to ride, most find that they can ride longer/ farther right from the start (my personal "first ride" on my 'bent was over 80 miles with no back, neck, or wrist pain - just tired legs). Since going recumbent, I've logged about 10 unsupported century rides and many, many rides over 40-50 miles. My main limitation is time (can'r always find whole days to ride), though 100 milers DO leave my legs pretty tired. One note on recumbents - the same rules apply for getting on fitted and finding the style uyou like. Test ride them. The more the better. Then pick one you'll ride. A bike you don't like is just a waste of money (IMHO).
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