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Tips for Buying the Right Bicycle

An Introduction to Styles, Frames and Sizes


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  • I would also add a tricycle for people that have balance problems.
  • This is a great breakdown of the different types of bikes. As I've been lightly thinking about purchasing one I've been wondering which would be best for my interests and work effort!
  • Perfect timing. I'm thinking about buying a bike.
  • funny how this popped up today when I just bought a bike yesterday.. lol
  • I have a new philosophy.
    I'm only going to dread one day at a time.
    - Charles M. Schulz
  • I don't use a recumbent bike. I just use a regular 2 wheeler
  • I just started bike riding last week. My bike was giving to me, so I'm making it work. Great article. Thanks for sharing
  • A lot of these comments about recumbent bikes, which were not mentioned at all in this article, are off base.

    Yes 'bent bikes are a niche market, but not because they are usually ridden by people with health issues. They are a niche market because prior to 1931, recumbent bikes were being used to set records. The UCI decided that since mid level riders were setting records on these contraption, they must be providing an unfair advantage. So they were banned from competition. Imagine if the governing bodies of other sports did that. The curveball would have been banned form baseball. America Cup boat racing would be using wooden hulls and canvas sails. Only leather shoes with metal spikes would be used for track.

    And because they were forced to be a niche market by the cycling governing body, there are few manufacturers and they cannot benefit from the scale of large numbers.

    Some people do move to 'bent bikes because of back pain and neck pain and wrist pain. But ask yourself: where did they develop these problems?

    Simple: from the geometry of an upright bike. As a man, I often complained about having a numb groin after a ride. I literally could not feel my ... well you know (I know Spark-censors think we are children) ... when I needed to go to the bathroom. Some men complain of impotence for a period after riding. Women also have issues. New seat design claim to relive those problem. Even different seats for men and women.

    But guess what? I have never had an issue on a 'bent bike. I don't have any issues with shoulder, back, neck, wrist or groin pain on a 'bent bike.

    I switched over because I discovered that they were wicked fun to ride. I did not switch over because I was having physical issue. But I can definitely say that the physical issues never showed up on my 'bent and a;ways shoed up on my wedgie.

    So if you think there is a cause and effect involving pain on an wedgie causing one to move to a 'bent, think again. Riding the wedgie cause the pain in the first place. It simply does not exists on a 'bent.

    As for the 'bents being a popular bike for weight loss, I cannot speak directly to that. But why would a person who is already having back problems, knee problems, and other joint problems (not to mention the other "joint" problems if you know what I mean) that excessive weight may cause purposely get onto a bike that is known to cause those issues on fit people.

    It is not acceptable to hurt after exercise. It is unnecessary. If you are in pain when you are done a work out ... not just sore but in actual pain ... then any trainer will tell you that you are doing it wrong.

    Yes, you will need to relearn how to ride a bike if you get a recumbent bicycle. But there are available, if you can afford it, excellent recumbent tricycles. If you have balance issues, as I did after a concussion caused by an over the handle bars crash when I hit a pothole with my bike, the trike makes them go away.

    Do not ignore recumbent trikes and bike. I have a Catrike Expedition ( and I am planning to tackle a cross country trip on it using Route 66 from Santa Monica to Chicago then on to Atlantic City. (

    So when I tell you to get 'bent, take that as sound advice, not as an insult.
  • Great helpful article. I just wish we could try the bike out for say a week or so to see if it feels as good after we're tired. Sometimes, while trying out a bike in a store (even the bike store) it may feel okay when you are stationary, but when you get it home and ride it for say 30 mins or more, you find that the seat hurts your bum and you are reaching too far to the handlebars. I am a former triathlete and now ride a commercial bike! Wow!!! What a difference the fit makes!!!
  • These bikes seem to be streamlined for the much younger crowd. I have a one speed with a standard brakes. I don't compete any more, so i felt I didn't need a real expensive bike. The article is informative, but a bit shy on the different types of bikes. I have friends that ride the recumbent bikes, however, they are not for me.
  • I wished I would have read this before I purchased my bike, the first thing I had to do was change my seat
  • I too found this article poorly written.Yes recumbents were not mentioned BUT neither were any traditional touring bikes. Not everyone wants (or NEEDS) a 27 speed monstrosity.. Not to mention I have never seen a STEEL framed bike rust. They have paint for a reason and if you don't want to use some common sense (like occasionally cleaning your bike and NOT leaving it out in the rain or all winter) then ,yes, of course its going to succumb to the elements just like anything else.

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