Get healthy and relieve stress with cycling by embarking on a new bicycle and riding it down a bike trail or trail, exploring dirt trails or traversing your city streets and alleys.
If you can find one! Unfortunately, due to manufacturing delays many bike shops and online retailers cannot sell many beginner models; even some of the best-performing beginner bikes may be unavailable or have waiting lists; we still recommend these models below from trusted manufacturers and retailers.
Read our buying guide for tips and advice on finding the ideal bike. Check out our reviews of top models; if you can wait several weeks (or even longer for certain models), these models have all been thoroughly tested by us and should perform excellently.
The 7 Best Bikes for Beginners in 2023: Our Top Picks
|Most Versatile for Beginners||Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike|
|Most Affordable||Schwinn High Timber Youth/Adult Mountain Bike|
|Speedy All-Arounder||Mongoose Dolomite Mens Fat Tire Mountain Bike|
|Best overall||IDS Home unYOUsual U|
|Editor’s Picks||RoyalBaby Freestyle Kids Bike|
This bike features a sturdy Denim Blue hardtail frame and 21 different speeds, making it a great choice for outdoor adventures. Just follow the instructions in the product manual to get started.
Equipped with an indexed Shimano TZ-31 rear derailleur and a micro-shift twist shifter, this bike allows you to shift gears effortlessly and quickly. With 21 speeds available, you can conquer uphill climbs, enjoy smooth downhill rides, or accelerate with ease. Additionally, the removable rear derailleur guard ensures that your gear operation remains consistent throughout your ride.
This bike features a lightweight 16-inch steel frame, making it an excellent choice for both neighborhood rides and trail adventures. The 24-inch wheel frame is suitable for riders who are between 5’5″ to 6’0″ in height.
Equipped with an alloy crank, this bicycle allows for steady gear changes while requiring less maintenance. The twist shifters and rear derailleur make it easy to switch gears quickly, so you can tackle any terrain with ease. The wide knobby mountain tires provide excellent traction on all types of terrain and sit on a durable alloy wheel that offers stability and balance, making it perfect for all weather conditions.
This mountain bike is built to tackle any off-road trail with ease. Featuring a sturdy steel frame and supersized all-terrain knobby 26-inch wheels, this bike is suitable for riders who are between 64 to 74 inches tall.
The threadless headset is adjustable, making it easy to customize the bike for riders of different heights. Additionally, the strong and lightweight alloy rims provide added speed and performance while keeping the overall weight of the bike down.
Enjoy a comfortable ride with the beach cruiser pedals, and ensure your safety with the front and rear disc brakes. Whether you’re cruising through rugged terrain or taking on steep hills, this mountain bike will help you conquer any challenge that comes your way.
This folding bicycle is designed for both commuting and exercising, with a compact 20-inch frame that makes it easy to store and transport.Equipped with a Shimano 6-speed shifter and derailleur, this bike allows you to easily adjust your speed and tackle different terrain types. The semi-alloy front and rear V-brakes provide reliable stopping power, ensuring your safety on the road.
The bike features WANDA 20″ x 1.75 tires that provide excellent traction on different surfaces. The quick-removable front handle stem, along with the alloy silver color cap and PVC black bell, add to the bike’s convenience and style. Whether you need a reliable mode of transportation or a way to stay active, this folding bicycle is a great choice.
Inspired by the BMX spirit, the RoyalBaby Freestyle kid’s bike is all about fun, creativity, freedom, and friendship, making it perfect for the next cycling star.
Each bike comes equipped with RoyalBaby’s patented sealed bearing, ensuring smooth pedaling with every ride. The 12/14/16 inch bikes also come with training wheels, making it easy for young beginners to learn to pedal and maintain balance. The water bottle and holder add to the joy of the ride, while the fully adjustable seat and handlebar provide extra space as your child grows taller.
With the shortest travel distance grips, the bike provides extra braking efficiency, while the sturdy steel frame and 2.4″ wide cylinder tires make it perfect for any adventure, keeping your little one safe and sound.The bike comes 95% pre-assembled, with an elaborated instruction manual and all the necessary tools included in the box. It is easy enough to put together in just 15 minutes, so your child can start enjoying their new bike in no time.
- Great value
- Requires almost no maintenance
- Tires can slip on slick surfaces
The Strider’s most popular model is designed for children between 18 months and five years old. The bike is scaled to fit young kids, from the smaller grips to the lightweight frame, weighing just 6.7 pounds when fully assembled.
The 12” wheels are made from EVA polymer, which ensures that they never go flat, providing a worry-free ride for your child. Additionally, the bike features an extra-long seat post, allowing you to get the most out of it when your child hits their growth spurt.With its kid-friendly design and durable construction, this Strider model is the perfect choice for young riders who are just starting to learn how to ride a bike. It offers a safe and fun way for your child to explore the world around them, while also promoting physical activity and outdoor play.
This road bike features an aluminum rigid fitness frame and fork, with a flat-styled handlebar and sport riding seat. The 28-Inch wheels are suitable for riders between 64 to 74 inches tall.
With its 14-speed shifter and brake lever combo, this bike provides precise shifting that you can trust for years of smooth riding. The alloy linear pull brakes on the front and rear ensure that stopping won’t be an issue, providing a safe and comfortable ride.Crafted from durable materials like aluminum frame, alloy wheels, alloy crank, and alloy brakes and components, this bike is built to last and can take you on any ride you desire. Whether you want to ride for fitness or leisure, this bike will get you out there, helping you to feel more fit and energized.
Which bicycle type best meets your needs?
Beginner bikes have never been more accessible or affordable. You can now purchase one that’s stable, simple and comfortable for less than $600 dollars from professional bike shops; although this may cost slightly more than alternatives found at big box retailers, it almost always proves worthwhile in the form of professional assembly, parts that won’t rust, superior performance and durability – check out our top five picks below and read on for additional options and advice when buying.
As the options available to you when purchasing your first bike can be confusing, begin by considering where and why you plan to ride; this will help narrow down your choices to find one suitable for you.
Hardtail mountain bikes may provide the greatest level of comfort if your plan involves riding trails or unpaved pathways, since their knobby tires offer greater traction on dirt terrain while suspension forks help absorb some of the bumps along the trail. Most basic options cost between $700 and $800.
For travel on paved paths, boardwalks and sidewalks, hybrid or cruiser bikes may be an ideal solution. Cruiser bikes feature classic looks with wide handlebars; perfect for slower speeds at speeds starting around 300 rpm (prices start at $300 for one speed models). Hybrid bikes provide exercise or fun while still remaining upright and comfortable for riders; starting prices typically fall somewhere around $500.
Road bikes are ideal for riding mostly on paved roads, with narrower tires, drop-style handlebars and smooth surfaces in mind. Look for models featuring aluminum frames and disc brakes as these will provide greater control. Prices typically start around $900 with cheaper alternatives available if rim brakes are chosen instead. Gravel bikes offer greater comfort when traveling over dirt or gravel surfaces thanks to wider, grippier tires making the ride more manageable once pavement ends – prices typically start around the same as road bikes.
Do I Need an E-Bike? E-bikes offer a convenient solution for exercising or commuting via bicycle, with less effort and sweat than traditional models. While still pedalling is necessary, its motor will increase speed based on pedal force up to 20mph; its battery must be charged every few days or daily depending on its range; furthermore e-bikes weigh more due to additional weight of motor and battery units, making storage and transporting harder, and cost more – with even the cheapest options costing over $1,000!
Beginner Bikes: Key Features
Stability: An optimal bike will offer enough support as you balance and turn, making it predictable and manageable at low speeds. A bike with good balance typically boasts wider handlebars, longer wheelbases, and lower standover heights; these characteristics enable easier foot placement to stabilize yourself when necessary.
Relaxed Position: For the optimal rider experience, setting their spine at 90- to 70-degree angles from the ground reduces strain on neck and back muscles, as well as increased comfort on your ride. Beginner bikes often include this feature to accommodate this relaxation.
Find bikes with wider tires; these provide additional grip and traction so you can ride safely in most conditions.
This guide will assist in selecting the ideal bike size. If possible, test ride the model that catches your eye, or perform some research into its geometry so as to gain an understanding of it and get an impression of what to expect when riding it.
How We Tested These Bikes
All the bikes below have either been thoroughly ridden by our team, or tested. In order to select the top bikes, we consult with designers, engineers, and product managers of these models in order to learn their intended users and design goals as well as our market research experience with similar bikes.
As we made our recommendations, we considered costs, performance, style and ease of maintenance – as well as our experience with similar bikes – when making our decisions. In addition, we considered quality of build as well as effort required for assembling bikes purchased online.
Buying a Beginner Bike FAQ
How much should I spend on a beginner bike?
The cost of a beginner bike will depend on the type of bike and the quality of the components. You can find bikes at a wide range of price points, from under $100 to several thousand dollars. In general, it’s worth it to invest in a higher-quality bike that will be more durable and better-performing in the long run.
What size bike should I get?
The size of the bike is important for comfort and control. If the bike is too small or large, it will be difficult to ride and may be uncomfortable. Most bikes will have size recommendations listed on their packaging or in their product descriptions, so you can use these as a starting point. If you’re not sure what size is right for you, a local bike shop can help you measure your inseam and recommend a size based on your height and riding style.
How do I know if a bike is good quality?
There are a few indicators of a bike’s quality:
- The materials used in the frame: Higher-quality bikes will generally have frames made of materials like carbon fiber or high-strength aluminum, which are lightweight and durable.
- The components: Look for bikes with high-quality components such as Shimano or SRAM gears and hydraulic disc brakes. These components will generally be more durable and perform better than lower-quality ones.
- The brand reputation: Check out online ratings and reviews to get an idea of a brand’s reputation for producing high-quality bikes.
Do I need to buy a new bike or can I buy a used one?
There are pros and cons to both new and used bikes. New bikes will typically come with a warranty and be in perfect working order, but they can be more expensive. Used bikes can be a more budget-friendly option, but they may require more maintenance and may not be in as good of condition as a new bike. If you do decide to buy a used bike, be sure to inspect it carefully and have a mechanic check it over before you buy it to ensure it is safe to ride.
Can beginners use road bikes?
Road bikes can be a good choice for beginners, as long as you’re comfortable with the riding position and the level of fitness required to ride on paved surfaces. Road bikes are designed for speed and are best suited for riding on paved roads and trails. They have lightweight frames, narrow tires, and dropped handlebars, which allows the rider to lean forward and adopt a more aerodynamic position.
If you’re new to biking or haven’t ridden in a while, you may want to start with a hybrid bike or a city bike, which have a more upright riding position and are better suited for leisurely rides or commuting. As you become more comfortable and confident on the bike, you can consider upgrading to a road bike if you’re interested in tackling longer rides or training for a road race.
It’s important to choose a bike that is comfortable and fits you well, regardless of whether it’s a road bike or another type of bike. If you’re not sure which type of bike is best for you, a local bike shop can often provide guidance based on your riding goals and the types of terrain you’ll be riding on.
What frame material do I need?
The material of the bike frame can affect the weight, strength, and ride quality of the bike. Here are some common frame materials used in bikes:
- Steel: Steel is a durable and relatively inexpensive material that is commonly used in bike frames. Steel frames are generally heavier than frames made of other materials, but they are also strong and can provide a comfortable, smooth ride.
- Aluminum: Aluminum is a lightweight and corrosion-resistant material that is often used in bike frames. Aluminum frames are generally less expensive than carbon fiber frames, but they can be less comfortable to ride and may not be as durable.
- Carbon fiber: Carbon fiber is a strong and lightweight material that is often used in high-end bike frames. Carbon fiber frames are generally more expensive than aluminum or steel frames, but they are also lighter and can provide a smoothe
How much maintenance does a bike need?
Bikes require regular maintenance to keep them in good working order and ensure they are safe to ride. The amount of maintenance a bike needs will depend on factors such as the type of bike, the frequency of use, and the quality of the components. Here are some basic maintenance tasks that are typically recommended for bikes:
- Cleaning: Cleaning your bike regularly can help prevent rust and wear on the frame and components. Use a bike-specific cleaner and a soft cloth to wipe down the frame, and use a degreaser to clean the chain, derailleurs, and other moving parts.
- Lubricating: Lubricating the chain and other moving parts can help prevent rust and wear, and make it easier for the bike to shift gears. Use a bike-specific lubricant and apply it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Adjusting brakes and gears: Brakes and gears may need to be adjusted periodically to ensure they are working properly. This may involve tightening or loosening cable tension, or adjusting the position of the brake pads or derailleurs.
- Checking tires and inflating: Check the tire pressure regularly and inflate the tires to the recommended pressure, which is usually listed on the sidewall of the tire. If the tires are worn or damaged, they may need to be replaced.
- Inspecting and tightening bolts: Regularly check the bolts on the bike to ensure they are tightened to the proper torque. Loose bolts can cause problems with the bike’s performance and may be dangerous.
By performing regular maintenance, you can help extend the life of your bike and ensure it is safe to ride.