How Do You Know Whether You Should Buy a Road Bike or a Mountain Bike

admin 0

The decision whether to buy a road bike or a mountain bike really depends on what you are comfortable with and what you believe you will do the most. When I decided I wanted to get into biking my friends at the office were hardcore mountain bikers and they really made it sound fun. So based on their coaching my first bike was a mountain bike. Today, however, I am an avid roadie and can see myself staying a roadie for a long time.

My experience with my mountain bike was very much like the first time I went skiing with my buddies in college. They all enjoyed it and wanted me to try, with their guidance we were off on my first ski trip. They did their best to explain how to ski and even took me to the bunny slope to practice. Well, that didn’t last long and we were soon on the chair lift riding to the top of the mountain.

It was a beautiful winter day, crisp, clear, cold, with brilliant, blue sky. This was exactly how I pictured skiing would be and then came time to get off the chair. To say it was all downhill from here was an understatement. My other buddy described it as being pulled by a rope behind a car while others threw ice and cold water in your face. Being humiliated by my buddies was not fun, but there were enough good things about skiing that I wanted to come back for more, just not with my buddies.

My mountain biking experiences were not much different then that ski trip. My office friends as I said were hardcore mountain bikers and I am a competitive person so I did my best to keep up. My post ride routine included a liberal application of antiseptic and a lot of bandages. Soon my pre-ride routine included enough pads for a tackle football game not a friendly bike ride. Not that mountain biking was not for me, I was just with a group of riders that were way above my skill level pushing me way past my limits. There were times that I went out by myself and was able to navigate the trail without the post ride bandage routine. But mountain biking was not the same without the camaraderie. They say once you learn to ride a bike you will never forget but I quickly realized as a middle aged man those bike skills of my youth were powerless against most of the single track trails in the foothills of Auburn California.

That winter work moved me to the Bay Area, were my biking took a different direction. As I drove around my new neighborhood and town I noticed a lot of people biking along the road ways. The roadways were wide with clearly marked bike lanes. From my home you could go in any direction and cover forty, fifty, or sixty miles. Riding along side automobiles and crossing intersections somehow seemed scarier than those single tracks I left behind in the foothills. Being aware I watched the riders along the road everywhere I went and as a motorist I always yielded to them.

That gave me the courage to head down to the local bike shop to get fitted for a road bike. When I purchased my mountain bike, I bought too much bike; I took the opposite approach with the road bike. I kept it simple until I found out if it was for me. That was seven years ago and I have upgraded my ride to a Cannondale Super Six a pretty sexy bike if you ask me and it is lightweight and fast. I found the road bike gave me the time to improve my skill level on a bike. Being able to really handle your bike is the best defense against motorist. Oh, yeah the motorist… I can say almost a hundred percent of them were actually mindful of me on my bike and would usually yield the right of way even when they shouldn’t have. Keep in mind I did say almost one hundred percent.

So if you are deciding between a road bike and a mountain bike take the time to find out what suits you the best. Most local bike shops will allow you to demo a bike and take it for a ride. You will need a helmet and bike shorts, but wait on the bike shoes until you buy the bike. It won’t matter what your buddies are doing, if you are not enjoying yourself you won’t go out and ride. Besides, once you find what fits you it will be easy to find buddies who will fit your skill level.

Article Source:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *