What type of bike?

 Credit: Rosie Collins

Credit: Rosie Collins

Choosing the right bike for you

Do you want a bike in order to cycle on the road to work everyday? Or go through the countryside with your partner at the weekend? Does it need to be light enough to carry up a couple of flights of stairs or strong enough to carry a basket and panniers to carry your weekly groceries from your local shop?

The most important thing you can do is to work out and be clear about what you want your bike for, and not be swayed by the personal preferences of other people. If you are able to communicate your needs to the bike shop, they will be able to assist you in buying the right bike for you.

Bikes tend to fall into 5 categories: 

• Road bikes are sleek lightweight bikes, often with 'drop' handle bars and thin wheels, designed for cycling fast or racing on roads.

• Mountain bikes are much heavier than road bikes, with thick wheels designed to grip on the rough terrain encountered off road.

• City bikes are also called hybrids because they have a combination of mountain bike and road bike features. The have a relatively lightweight frame, with sturdy wheels to deal with a daily commute on urban roads.

• Fixed gear bikes are lightweight road bikes with just one gear. Whenever the rear wheel is turning, the pedals turn in the same direction.

• Upright bikes are traditional style bikes which are often sold with a basket on the front and are suitable for gentle leisure and local cycling.