How to Choose the Right Size Bike for You

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How to Choose the Right Size Bike for You

Bikes have evolved from the ''Bone Shakers'' of 1865, made entirely of wood reverberating off cobblestone streets, to the modern aluminium frame hybrid, equipped with a 50mm suspension fork, 30 gears and hydraulic disc brakes. The latter can be ridden comfortably on city streets or mountain paths. The overwhelming impact of this form of transportation was felt even in the women clothing industry during the 1800s. Referring to how fashions were forced to adapt to the needs of the female biker, Susan B. Anthony said that ''the bicycle has done more for the emancipation of women than anything else in the world.'' A variety of bikes can be purchased at online marketplaces like eBay.

Why Does Size Matter?

Because human bodies do not conform to one standard set of dimensions, manufacturers attempt to size their bikes to meet the needs and shapes of a wide range of buyers. However, the ways bikes are measured sometimes vary from one manufacturer to another, which makes selecting the right size even more difficult. For instance, many will specify that their bikes will accommodate individuals within a certain height range. But bike experts assert that just because a manufacturer says its bike is designed to fit men who are between 5'-8'' and 6'-2'' does not mean that it will fit all men within that range.

Height is indeed an essential consideration, but one must also give attention to specific body parts involved in operating a bike. For instance, primary stress is put on the upper leg muscles. Also not to be overlooked is the workout received by shoulders, the arms, and the core or torso. The physical condition of these muscles and the bones with which they are associated vary from person to person. Since little is available about cycling biomechanics, the rider often has to depend on a trial and error method of finding a bike that fits.

Know Your eBay Bike Seller

An excellent way to find a good quality bike is to shop eBay Stores. Be sure to communicate with the eBay Community to exchange ideas and get excellent advice. Before you purchase a bike, research the eBay seller to ensure that your transaction is secure and positive. Here are some important questions to consider before you buy the right size bike for you.

* How many negative versus positive responses does the seller have?

* What do eBay buyers say about their bikes in the feedback?

* How many bike sales has the eBay seller completed?

* Is there a money-back guarantee provided by the seller for their bike?

* What are the seller's terms and conditions?

Make Sure the Bike is the Right Size

What to do


Stand Over the Frame

A common method is to stand erect with both feet on the ground while straddling the frame or top tube of the bike, You replicate this by asking the seller the distance of the top tube from the ground if they haven't already provided it. Most bikers say that that there should be a distance of an inch or two between the top tube and the crotch. Where the top frame is not part of the design in women's bikes, this step can be omitted. The most frequent explanation for the two-inch tube-to-crotch ratio is rider's comfort. Too much or too little clearance is not only uncomfortable and thus a discouragement to routine or long-distance riding, but it is also a potential health hazard. It affects the rider's body alignment and muscle usage.

Assess the Length of the Tube

The tube is the top tubular part of the bike that extends from the seat post to the handlebar. It determines whether a biker can sit in an upright posture or must assume a semi-lateral position while riding. Common complaints resulting from bikers with a tube of improper length are neck aches and back pains. These result from hyperextension of the neck and prolonged bending of the lower back. To avoid these possible health problems, consider the following example: A suggested tube length for a man 6'0'' with an inseam of 34.25 inches and using a 23.2 inch bike frame is 57 centimetres. Sizing tables are available by manufacturers to help each biker to determine the tube length that best fits his frame. However, since some riders have short legs and long torsos and others just the opposite, it is often best to test ride several bikes and sometime the same bike several times to determine the best fit.

Determine the Height of the Seat

The crank is the mechanical part of the bike that transfers the power created from the pedalling motion into movement of the wheels. If the seat is adjusted improperly, a rider's pedalling can place undue pressure on the legs, creating discomfort and a possible injury. At the bottom of the pedal stroke the biker's leg should be extended so as to have only a slight bend to his knee. A proper test of whether the seat is adjusted to the right height is not that the rider is able to sit on the bike with both feet on the ground, but that he is able to stand straddle the tube with both feet on the ground.

Make Sure the Seat is Level and Adjusted Properly on the Seat Post

Maintaining control as the rider pedals is crucial. A seat tilted forward increases the possibility of sliding forward, whereas one tilted backward increases the pedalling effort and creates the feeling of slipping rearward. A level seat distributes the biker's weight evenly on his buttocks. A biker can also centre his weight for a more comfortable ride by adjusting the seat back or forward on the seat post.

Decide On a Comfortable Handlebar Height

A rule of thumb is that the handlebar should be set slightly above the seat. This enables the rider to maintain a comfortable upright position as he pedals. Since personal preference is a factor, the height may differ even among riders with similar body structure. Ultimately, the decision for the height of the handlebar should be based on whether it takes the strain off the back, shoulder and wrist.

Take in Consideration How the Bike is To Be Used

In the early years of bike manufacturing the choices were limited. Though today's bikes fall into three general categories-road, mountain or hybrid, variations within those categories are often numerous and confusing.

* Road Bikes: The road bike is designed for speed on the open road and encourages a low position to avoid wind drag. They can be hazardous for beginners trying to navigate bumpy curbs, uneven roads, and pothole covers. In fact, the impact coming off high curbs, combined with the weight of the rider, can bend the wheels. Additionally, the rider would want to choose a handlebar height that enables him to look forward without straining his neck.

* Mountain Bikes: These are crafted for rough terrain. The big, lumpy tires are good for gripping rocky trails. However, the heavy shock absorption of the mountain bike generates friction on city streets, slows the bike, makes pedalling difficult, and causes fatigue in the rider. They, like the road bike, are designed to position the rider low.

* Hybrid Bikes: The hybrid is touted among bikers as the best of both worlds. It combines many of the characteristics of the road and the mountain bikes. Additionally, the construction is such that it allows the rider to sit in an upright position, which takes pressure off the back and neck.

The challenge for the buyer is not only to determine the right bike for his size, but the right bike for his purpose. A complication is that just when he solves the size/purpose equation for one manufacturer, the equation may change when he looks at the product of a different manufacturer.

Buy the Right Bike on eBay

Whether you are a trail blazer, an open-roader or something in between, you will find the bike to fit your lifestyle on eBay. With such a vast selection of new and used bikes in a variety of types, popular sizes and famous brand names, eBay is a sensible starting place. Find the Sporting Goods portal, and type the kind of bike (mountain, road, or hybrid) into the search box to find the listings that match your specifications.


In light of the disparity in manufacturers' sizing, the unique body configuration of each rider and the distinctive purpose for which various types of bikes are designed, the rider does well not to make a hasty decision about which bike to purchase. Instead, he should spend time trying out different types of bikes made by different manufacturers until he finds the one that suits his needs. Even after the purchase, he will need to make physical adjustments to his bike to insure a perfect fit. This investment in time and effort will prove valuable in helping him to avoid pain, fatigue, and injury when he takes to the road. You will need to consider a wide selection of bikes in order to find the right size bike for you. A variety of bikes can be purchased at online marketplaces like eBay.

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