How to pick out a bike for an adult - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-18-2014, 07:22 PM
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Just found out my company will reimburse me for exercise equipment. Yay me!  I want a bike but I have no idea how to select one.  If anyone can give me suggestions, that would be great!

 

Unfortunately I have some limitations.

 

  1. I need "up" handlebars.  I have a bad back and can't be hunching myself over unnecessarily.  Would a cruiser bike be the best choice for this?
  2. I broke my tailbone years ago and it hurts if I jostle it around too much.  Any suggestions to avoid pressure or bouncing on the tailbone?
  3. I'm 5'8" with longer legs. What size bike do I need (or how do I know what I need)?
  4. I live in an extremely hot area and I'm clumsy. I suppose I need a helmet. What should I look for?
  5. Is there anything else I should know?

 

I haven't ridden a bike since I was a teenager. 

 

I will just be riding around a quiet neighborhood on sidewalks and to/from a small shopping plaza. It'd be nice to have a basket so I could pick up some stuff at the store when I ride.

 

Sometimes it might be very early morning, so I suppose I'll need lights.

 

This one sounds good? Commenters recommend replacing the seat.  I'm worried the tires are only 2" across, because I'm clumsy.


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#2 Old 03-18-2014, 08:11 PM
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You REALLY should go into a local bike shop and ask them. They will fit you for the bike, make sure you're getting the right bike for what you plan to do with it, and get you all set up.

They will also let you try it out before you buy it.

Plus most shops will offer free tune ups, and you'll help you're local economy.

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#3 Old 03-18-2014, 08:24 PM
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An important thing to consider is the bike's weight.  The heavier the bike, the more work it takes to ride it.

 

As far as sizing goes, since you're looking at women's bikes, I'm not sure how well I can answer this. For a man's bike, the rider should be able to straddle the bike, not sitting on the seat, with both feet flat on the ground, with the top frame-rail just clearing under the crotch. If the top rail is higher than that, the bike is too big. Sizing a bike is best done in person.

 

The seat should be adjusted so, when you're sitting on it, and the pedal is at its lowest point, your foot should reach the pedal with your leg slightly bent.  The seat shouldn't be so high that your leg goes completely straight, nor so low that your leg is excessively bent.

 

I'm like you. I ride just around the neighborhood and to the store. I have twin baskets on the back, one on either side of the rear wheel. Each one will hold a regular shopping bag. It works pretty well.

 

If you're new to biking, you should know, your bike will almost certainly have a front and rear brake. Never use the front brake by itself. If you do, it can cause the front wheel to jerk to one side or the other and cause a crash. Use the back brake first, then apply the front for extra braking power.

 

I hope this helps.


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#4 Old 03-19-2014, 06:30 PM
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Thanks so much for your suggestions.  Keep 'em coming.

 

I was too eager to get it, so I just went and did it.  Here I am.

Just kidding!  10 points to anyone who knows who that is.:popcorn:  I think I'll look like this if I add baskets, but I suppose I shouldn't care. 

 

Is it a lot more expensive to get one at a bike store than at Walmart (<$200), for example?  I've looked at prices online and they're all over the map.


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#5 Old 03-19-2014, 06:40 PM
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Ack ! I know who that is! And she still gives me nightmares :'(
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#6 Old 03-19-2014, 08:39 PM
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I'll bet you look more like Jennifer Beals in Flashdance!


"There is more wisdom in the song of a bird, than in the speech of a philosopher...." -Oahspe
"The thing is, you cannot judge a race. Any man who judges by the group is a pea-wit. You take men one at a time." -Buster Kilrain, The Killer Angels -Michael Shaara
"Anyone who doesn't believe in miracles isn't a realist." -Billy Wilder
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#7 Old 04-10-2014, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineaa View Post

Thanks so much for your suggestions.  Keep 'em coming.

I was too eager to get it, so I just went and did it.  Here I am.


Just kidding!  10 points to anyone who knows who that is.popcorn.gif   I think I'll look like this if I add baskets, but I suppose I shouldn't care. 

Is it a lot more expensive to get one at a bike store than at Walmart (<$200), for example?  I've looked at prices online and they're all over the map.
If you get a basket on the back like that, you should get a stuff animal that looks like Toto and have its head poking out!

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#8 Old 04-10-2014, 04:24 PM
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It does tend to be more expensive to get one at a shop, but it is worth it quality wise if you can afford it -- there is a major difference.

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#9 Old 04-11-2014, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fromper View Post


If you get a basket on the back like that, you should get a stuff animal that looks like Toto and have its head poking out!

--Fromper
juggle.gif

 I should totally get the whole outfit and wear it while I ride around with the stuffed Toto. LOL. Just act like nothing. When I pass people, I can hum the music from the movie and screech, "And your little dog, too!"


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#10 Old 04-11-2014, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineaa View Post

Just found out my company will reimburse me for exercise equipment. Yay me!  I want a bike but I have no idea how to select one.  If anyone can give me suggestions, that would be great!

Unfortunately I have some limitations.
  1. I need "up" handlebars.  I have a bad back and can't be hunching myself over unnecessarily.  Would a cruiser bike be the best choice for this?

I think the kind of bike you should get is generally called a hybrid.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_bicycle
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineaa 
[*] I'm 5'8" with longer legs. What size bike do I need (or how do I know what I need)?

Go to a reputable bike shop and have them size it for you in person.
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineaa 
[*] I live in an extremely hot area and I'm clumsy. I suppose I need a helmet. What should I look for?

Everyone needs a helmet, regardless of weather conditions, clumsiness, whatever.
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagineaa 
[*] Is there anything else I should know?


I haven't ridden a bike since I was a teenager. 

I will just be riding around a quiet neighborhood on sidewalks and to/from a small shopping plaza. It'd be nice to have a basket so I could pick up some stuff at the store when I ride.

Sometimes it might be very early morning, so I suppose I'll need lights.

Lights serve two functions: to illuminate your way, and to help other riders or vehicles to see you. The second function is more important, IMO.
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#11 Old 04-11-2014, 10:45 PM
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I have a cruiser type bike, very hipster according to my daughter. The seat is big and comfy, and it is not a fast bike to say the least. When I ride with my son, he circles back to collect me now and then. grin.gif. I have lots of fun, and the basket holds some stuff. (I admit to not wearing a helmet. :O ) It has fat tires, high handlebars and no gears, and I got it second hand, looking brand new, for $75. I thought I had a photo, but it must have been on my old cell phone.

Have fun biking!
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#12 Old 05-30-2014, 11:13 AM
 
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There are many bike shops that you can go and ask the staff what’s bike that suits you. They know it and I don't think it is good to have extra wheel. LOL! But I love the idea of having a basket. I love biking in the morning and I went to the grocery to buy something for my lunch.
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#13 Old 05-30-2014, 11:34 AM
 
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Please please please do not get a bike at Wal-mart! There's a huge difference in quality in the way the bike rides/handles, not to mention for safety purposes. They're basically a death trap. Bike shops are more expensive ($500+) but you pay for what you get. Go out for a test drive. You should notice the difference in how the gears shift, brake responsiveness, and how much lighter the bike is.

While you're there, check out the helmets (which I highly suggest). You should get front and back lights and keep them on you just in case. It gets darker way earlier in the fall/winter and you definitely don't want to be caught riding in the dark.

A cruiser bike is fine if you're just going from point a to b. They aren't fast though and are generally heavier than hybrid bikes. So if you live in a very hilly place, it might be more difficult to get uphill on a cruiser.

Bike shops can be expensive so maybe go there to test drive and see which ones you like. Then try finding them on Craigslist or Kijiji. You can find some great bikes on there for a good price.
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