More than half of Americans took part in at least one outdoor recreation activity in 2019. That number grew by more than 7 million in 2020 because of the pandemic.
Whether trends continue to rise or not, science shows that outdoor recreational activities are excellent for your health. One of the most popular activities is biking.
If you enjoy biking, this guide will help you choose the best mountain bike to buy.
Types of Mountain Bikes
When choosing to buy a mountain bike, first, you have to decide which type of bike you want – hardtail or full suspension.
A hardtail bike doesn’t have a rear suspension (shock), only a front suspension. As a result, hardtail bikes are lighter and faster on climbs and pedal areas. But they don’t handle descent, drops, or jumps well.
A full-suspension bike has both a front and rear suspension. These bikes make the ride smoother, especially on rough terrain.
Styles of Mountain Bikes
There are several different styles of specialized bikes to choose from. The best mountain bike for you will depend on where you go biking.
Cross-country bikes are mostly hardtails. They have a shape that makes pedaling easier. They also have a shorter wheelbase for easy handling and agility. You can use a cross-country bike for other activities too like countryside or trail riding.
Trail bikes allow you to pedal easily and efficiently. They come in both hardtail and full suspension. Trail bikes can absorb more impact and bumps on trails than cross-country bikes.
Enduro bikes have a longer wheelbase than the previous two styles. They have a shape that gives them a lower center of gravity. Enduro bikes have higher stability at high speeds and steep descents. They can handle big rocks and drops.
Fatbikes have wide tires for terrain like snow, mud, and sand. You may find enduro and fat bikes in the hardtail style too.
The frame of downhill bikes pushes the rider back and has an even lower center of gravity than enduro bikes. Thus, they are best for the roughest terrains. However, you can’t use it for riding uphill.
Other Buying Factors
To buy the best bike, you also need to think about the frame material and size, wheel size, drive terrain, and brakes.
Aluminum and carbon are the two most popular frame materials. Aluminum is more affordable, but it’s not as durable as carbon. Carbon bikes are also lighter and more flexible.
The two most common wheel sizes are 27.5″ and 29″. However, wheel size will depend on the bike frame size, height, and comfort you want.
Choosing a good drivetrain is very important. You put pressure on it every time you pedal and shift. Drivetrains come in 1X, 2X, and 3X chainrings. High quality is vital here.
Finally, you can choose between rim or disc brakes. Disc brakes are more expensive, but they are heavier and more durable. For best results, choose hydraulic disc brakes.
Since there are so many things to consider, think about how you will use it before you purchase a mountain bike. If you’re new to mountain biking, check out some biking tips to help you get started.
Choose the Best Mountain Bike
Using this guide, you can buy the best mountain bike for yourself. You can even get your mountain bike online if you’re confident in the bike you want!
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