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What's the Best Size Bike For Five Feet Tall Riders?

Hey everyone. Peter here at Sixthreezero E-bikes and bikes. What size bikes should you get if you're right about five feet tall?


All right, so five feet is generally right on the cusp of between what we call a 24-inch bike and a 26-inch bike. And what we mean by those sizes are the size of the wheel. Okay. This is a 26-inch bike, meaning it's really just a name. The wheel isn't really actually that size. It's close to it. It's a nominal dimension. And then a little bit smaller is the 24-inch bike. Now, the rule of thumb, and I'm going to get into some details, but the rule of thumb is that over five feet would use the 26-inch bike. And then under five feet would use the 24-inch bike. But there are a lot of caveats to that. We have a proprietary fitting system called the Body Fit, which is really excellent, and you should use it and put in your information and find out what size bike. But what's also interesting is, that we capture a lot of data from our returns and a lot of feedback from our customers. And actually, the biggest reason for return is that the bike doesn't fit, even though they've taken our Body Fit.


What we've found is that a lot of times the bike is actually physically the right size for a customer, but then when they get the bike, it feels too big. It's like when you rent one of those big U-Haul trucks. You start to drive it, and it just feels too massive. It feels like it's taking up two lanes and half of the sidewalk. A lot of times what you have to factor into getting a bike if you're around five feet tall is your confidence level. Also, remember that your confidence will increase as you ride the bike. After a week, or definitely by two weeks, you'll start to feel like, "Oh, this is a bike I can manage." You may remember when you first started to drive a car, the windshield just felt so huge. The car felt too big for you. Well, it was the right size car. Most likely, it just felt too big.


In general, if the Body Fit is telling you a 26-inch because of your height and your inseam, et cetera, then that's probably the right bike for you. A 24-inch would really be too small. After a week or two, after you get more confident that 24-inch would probably feel too small.

Now, there are a lot of differences and caveats because everyone's bodies and proportions are so different. They're all over the place. You may have a longer inseam or you may have a longer torso, so you need to take that into account. Generally, we think just, generally speaking, you want to have about a 26-inch inseam. You measure your inseam. You want about a 26-inch inseam minimum to ride the 26-inch bike. That's for physically the right size, not talking about confidence. That's what I'm saying when a lot of times we'll send out bikes that actually are the right size in terms of physical proportions. But then a lot of times, a person is not feeling super confident about the size of the bike they got.


Anyway, mainly if you are definitely at least five feet tall and have an inseam of 26 inches, then the 26-inch is going to be the right size for you. It may feel a little big at first. I would suggest riding it for a week or two, see how it works. If it really is too big for you, maybe scale down to the 24-inch.


Another thing, you are buying online, and we do have a very generous return policy because we want you to be able to do that. However, I'm not afraid to say that you may need to go into a bike shop and sit on a bike if you're really concerned if you're on the cusp. Maybe you're 4'11, and you're a very confident rider, and you feel like you can reach the pedals, and you want a 26-inch bike. There's nothing wrong with that. It may feel just right for you. There are also different types of bikes. Every bike has different geometries and different ways of sitting and positioning. If you're on the cusp, it may just be good for you to go into a bike shop, check out their bikes, and maybe even purchase one from them. Okay? Whatever it takes. I want you to get on a bike and I want you to be happy with it.


Anyway, if you're right there on the cusp, whatever Body Fit tells you, that's probably going to be the right size in terms of your physicality, your physical proportions, your inseam, and your height. However, on confidence level, that's harder to gauge until you actually get on the bike and ride it. You won't know that until you actually are physically taking the bike for a spin, going uphills going downhills. How does it feel? It will take a little bit of time if you haven't ridden in a while to get that confidence, but you will get it. And then all of a sudden you realize, "Oh, this is the right size bike for me." Or you'll definitely understand that, no, this isn't. But definitely, the confidence factor, give it a test ride. Again, if you're on the margin, please ride a friend's bike, go to a bike shop, try out 24-inch, try out a 26-inch, and try the different frame configurations. There are lots of types of different bikes, cruisers, hybrids, road bikes, mountain bikes, and the list goes on and on.


Anyway, that's mostly my advice for you. If you're right around the five-foot range, maybe even up to 5'1 or so, potentially 5'2 if you have a shorter inseam, that can all play into it. Definitely use the Body Fit. Also, do give us a call, at 310 982 2877. We're happy to walk you through the Body Fit, and also talk a little bit about other experiences we've had. We also have lots of videos and pictures of people who are your size, riding the bikes, getting on the bikes, and taking test rides, so check those out as well.


Okay, I hope that was helpful. Again, give us a call or give us an email. You can also email us at TheTeam@sixthreezero.com. Six three zero was spelled out S-I-X-T-H-R-E-E-Z-E-R-O. TheTeam@sixthreezero.com. We can absolutely help walk you through the process of getting the right size bike for your fit, especially if you have questions about the Body Fit.


I truly hope that was helpful for you. If you liked it, please do like it and hit subscribe. It helps grow our channel. And if you need any help at all, please contact us. You can call us at 310 982 2877, or email us at TheTeam@sixthreezero.com. Remember six, three, zero is spelled out S-I-X-T-H-R-E-E-Z-E-R-O. TheTeam@sixthreezero.com.


Thanks.

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