Whether you are a recreational bike rider or a serious cyclist, cycling can be the perfect way to enjoy the great weather this country has to offer or ideal for a good cardio workout. When it comes to choosing a bike as a woman, I find that there are a number of challenges that can arise in comparison to men choosing bikes. With most bikes for men it is a simple question of how technical or expensive a bike it is that you want, as most bikes are built to fit a mans body.

Us women are left with the task of not only finding a bike that fits their specifications as a rider but also finding something comfortable, something that will hold the upper torso weight, be the perfect height to make it easy to ride whether you have shorter arms or legs or something that can accommodate your weight, then you are stuck with the daunting task of looking at bikes designed specifically for women, such as cruiser bikes, e bikes, road bikes, mountain bikes and more.

Not long ago I purchased an e-bike for myself and let me tell you the task was daunting at first, but I have created this short blog to help make it easier for women when they are searching for that perfect bike, taking into account what to look for and what may usually just be a selling gimmick or fad to “appeal” to women. The bike I chose to purchase was a Cube Attain Disk ALS Women’s Bike. Now getting to this choice was not easy, but if you follow these few simple steps I can imagine it will make your bike buying experience a lot easier and less daunting.

So first things first, is to decide on what style of bike you are looking to get, if you’ve been out of action and not been on a bike for a while (trust me we have all been there) the easiest thing to do is to look at bikes in general, get a feel for the kind of bikes that you can imagine yourself on and what actually would make you feel comfortable riding. Once you have decided on what style of bike you’d like you need to look at trying bikes out.

Visit your local bike shops that offer women specific bikes. This will help you to find what’s comfortable for you as they are made to fit any women’s bodies. Sit on as many different bikes until you find something with a comfortable height and seat. The guys at the bike shops can tell you about frame sizes and what size usually fits your height and weight so make a small note of this to make it easier for you to decide. I personally found that I needed a wider seat as the mountain bike seat I had was a little on the small side and wasn’t comfortable at first. The best way to decide if the bike you like is for you is to simply sit on it for a few minutes so your body weight is fully on the seat to see if it feels comfortable so there is no pain or discomfort whilst you are sitting on the bike.

The next step is to ask if you can have a test ride on the bike to get a feel for the handlebars and the brake system along with the peddling and see if it all fits well and you feel stable on the bike. If you find that the bike is not for you, that’s completely fine, get back into the shop and try different bikes to compare your handlebar reach. You should be given some advice from the seller about the type of handlebars that you should use based on your height and length of your arms. If you are a little on the short side you should check that are not over compensating by straining to reach the handlebars comfortably. I found that when I found the perfect reach for myself on the bike that I liked that my elbows were slightly bent so I had the option to move freely whilst riding the bike.

The hardest part for me when I was choosing my bike was the gear systems and brake systems. This is where it gets technical (bear with me, it will all make sense eventually). So there are loads of different types of gear systems, number of gears and different brake leavers and brake types when choosing your bike. I hadn’t ridden a bike properly since I was in my teens and so I was a little overwhelmed when the shop specialist started talking in bike jargon. I switched off for a moment and then I simply had a conversation about what types of breaks would be on the bike I had chosen and the types of gears or number of gears I would have on my bike. The thought of peddaling and having to brake and change gears all at the same time just filled me with dread, but the specialist was amazing, he sat and talked to me about what the specifications of the bike meant. We then went back to the bike and I was able to ride the bike and get a feel for the gear changing system and also the brakes.

We adjusted the seat a little to make it a little lower, so I could angle myself, so my hands were more comfortable on the bars and easily accessible to the gear changing system and brakes. I noticed when I stopped that my knee was slightly bent when the pedal was at the lowest point. So, if you find that your leg is not in that comfortable position or if the seat cannot be adjusted any lower so your leg is in that position then that is not the bike for you.

The most obvious part of the bike purchase is once you have got through all the jargon and technicalities. You just need to look at the colours and frame sizes and find the bike for you, happy bike hunting ladies!!!