BIKE SIZING FOR SHORT WOMEN
April 5, 2005
Back to questions
I want to buy a mountain bike.
Im 54". Would that be a 26" for me,
or 24", or something else? Thanks.
The terms 24" or 26" refer (roughly)
to wheel diameter. However, that doesnt tell you an important piece
of info: The height of the bicycle frame. Adult bicycle frames
generally get sized by measuring the length of something called the down
Pictures help. Take a look at this
bicycle frame diagram (scroll down to “Frames”).
A bikes frame size results from measuring, in either
inches or millimeters, from the middle of the bottom bracket
to either the point where the top tube intersects the seat
tube or the top of the seat tube.
I might answer your real questionHow
does a short woman find a properly fitting bike?by telling you to
ignore all the above. Instead, I suggest you call the bike shops in your
area and say, "Do you have any bikes made especially for short women?"
For the ones that say "yes," go try em out.
What should you look for? Absolute comfort. While
sitting on the bike you should feel like your toes can touch the ground
securely, and while gripping the handlebar you should never feel too stretched
Bikes made for men dont work for lots of
women, but thats never stopped some retailers from selling them
to gals anyway. Luckily, some bike manufacturers have figured out female
geometry and offer bikes to suit. Youll find a list of these, as
well as more bike-fit tips, in my book, Urban Bikers
Tricks & Tips.