the right bike for you
THE RIGHT BIKE
FOR YOU
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE
TO BUYING THE
RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
WHAT TYPE OF CYCLIST ARE YOU?
IN ORDER TO
DETERMINE THE
IDEAL BIKE FOR
YOU, FIND YOUR
RIDER PROFILE
USING THESE
CATEGORIES:
> SOCIAL
YOU LIKE A LEISURELY PEDAL WITH FAMILY AND/
OR FRIENDS ONCE IN A WHILE.
> RECREATIONAL
YOU LIKE TO RIDE ON WEEKENDS WHEN THE WEATHER
IS PLEASANT. SPEED IS NOT IMPORTANT TO YOU.
> SPORTY
YOU LIKE TO DO A RACE ONCE IN A WHILE AND JUST
WANT TO FINISH WITH A SMILE; OR YOU RIDE TO
MANAGE YOUR WEIGHT AND STAY REASONABLY FIT.
> SERIOUS
YOU TRAIN TO DO AS WELL AS POSSIBLE IN A FEW
RACES A YEAR; OR YOU RIDE AT LEAST THREE TIMES
A WEEK ON AVERAGE.
> COMPETITIVE
BEING FIT AND FAST AND ABLE TO RACE WITH
CONFIDENCE IS IMPORTANT TO YOU.
> FANATICAL
YOU RIDE AT ANY CHANCE YOU GET AND MAKE LIFE
DECISIONS BASED AROUND YOUR CYCLING SCHEDULE.
WHAT’S YOUR COLOUR?
TO MAKE THIS GUIDE EASIER TO NAVIGATE,
WE HAVE DIVIDED CERTAIN ELEMENTS INTO COLOURS:
GREEN – BEGINNER/ENTRY-LEVEL
BLUE – INTERMEDIATE/MID-RANGE
BLACK – ADVANCED/TOP-END
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
MOUNTAIN
ROAD
TYPES OF BIKES
ROAD BIKE
CITY BIKE
GEOMETRY
FRAME MATERIAL
IDEAL FOR
relaxed geometry for an upright riding position
steel or aluminium
SOCIAL RIDER
ENTRY-LEVEL ROAD BIKE
slightly relaxed for a comfortable
GEOMETRY
riding position
FRAME MATERIAL
IDEAL FOR
aluminium
RECREATION, SPORTY RIDER
COMFORT ROAD BIKE
neutral to facilitate a power and comfort
GEOMETRY
combination
FRAME MATERIAL
IDEAL FOR
steel, aluminium, enhanced carbon fibre
SPORTY, SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE RIDER
PERFORMANCE ROAD BIKE
aggressive for a low, powerful riding position
GEOMETRY
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium, carbon fibre or titanium
IDEAL FOR
SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
WOMAN-SPECIFIC
GEOMETRY
shorter top tube to accommodate shorter torso
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium or carbon fibre
IDEAL FOR
FEMALE, SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE RIDER
TRIATHLON/TIME TRIAL
aggressive for a forward seated,
GEOMETRY
aerodynamic position
FRAME MATERIAL
IDEAL FOR
aluminium or carbon fibre
SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
BIKE
>MOUNTAIN
MOUNTAIN
BIKE
ENTRY-LEVEL HARDTAIL
slightly relaxed for a more upright
GEOMETRY
riding position
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium
IDEAL FOR
SOCIAL, RECREATIONAL RIDER
PERFORMANCE HARDTAIL
aggressive for a more controlled
GEOMETRY
forward-weighted position
FRAME MATERIAL steel, aluminium, scandium,
carbon fibre, titanium
IDEAL FOR
SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
DUAL-SUSPENSION MARATHON
neutral to facilitate a power and
GEOMETRY
comfort combination
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium, carbon fibre, titanium
80-110mm
SUSPENSION
TRAVEL
IDEAL FOR
SPORTY, SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
DUAL-SUSPENSION TRAIL
GEOMETRY
comfort
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium, carbon fibre
120-140mm
SUSPENSION
TRAVEL
IDEAL FOR
SPORTY, SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
DUAL-SUSPENSION GRAVITY
GEOMETRY
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium, carbon fibre
150-180mm
SUSPENSION
TRAVEL
IDEAL FOR
SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE, FANATICAL RIDER
WOMEN-SPECIFIC
neutral to facilitate a power and
GEOMETRY
comfort combination
FRAME MATERIAL aluminium, carbon fibre
80-140mm
SUSPENSION
TRAVEL
IDEAL FOR
FEMALE, SPORTY, SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE RIDER
A DUAL
SUSPENSION
BIKE IS BEST
IF YOU ARE:
> Over 40 years old
(male)
> Over 80kg
(male)
> Female
(any age and weight)
that’s a SERIOUS,
COMPETITIVE or
FANATICAL rider
> Keen on marathons,
stage races, trail
riding or Enduro
races
A HARDTAIL
BIKE IS BEST
IF YOU:
> Are on a limited
budget
> Do only short rides
(under 2 hours)
> Are keen on
cross-country racing
> Are fixated on
light weight
FRAME
FRAME MATERIAL AND GEOMETRY
THE FRAME IS THE STRUCTURE
AROUND WHICH YOUR BIKE
IS BUILT AND THEREFORE THE
MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR WHEN
MAKING A BUYING DECISION.
MOST BIKE BRANDS WILL OFFER
THE SAME FRAME FOR DIFFERENT
MODELS WITHIN THAT BRAND’S
RANGE, WITH PRICE-POINTS
CHANGING BASED ON THE PARTS
AND ACCESSORIES ON EACH
FRAME.
FRAME MATERIAL
Bicycle frames are made with
different materials. Here’s a summary
of the four most popular and their
characteristics:
STEEL: rather heavy and not too
responsive – used more on utility
bikes than performance bikes
ALUMINIUM: light and strong and
offers very a responsive, but slightly
hard ride
CARBON FIBRE: very light and
strong, but very rigid, offering a fast,
but hard ride
TITANTIUM: very light and strong,
FRAME GEOMETRY
The geometry of the frame refers to
the angles of the tubing, mostly the
headtube and seattube, which affect
the rider’s position on the bike. There
are three main types of geometry:
RELAXED GEOMETRY - puts the
rider in rearward-weighted, upright
position. This is best for riders that
prioritise comfort over performance.
On dual suspension mountain bikes,
however, the gravity-centric bikes
have a more relaxed geometry to
offer better control when descending.
3
5
6
8
1 - Fork
2 - Headtube
3 - Toptube
4 - Seattube
AGGRESSIVE GEOMETRY - puts the
HEAD TUBE
ANGLE
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
1
7
rider in a central-weighted, partiallycrouched position. This is the most
common geometry, with small
variations between the different
brands. It ensures a position that
delivers a combination of comfort and
control.
rider in a forward-weighted, crouched
position. This is best for riders that
prioritise performance over comfort.
It’s largely used on bikes
designed for racing.
2
4
NEUTRAL GEOMETRY - puts the
but not super-rigid, offering a slightly
plush, fast ride
SEAT TUBE
ANGLE
BIKE
>ROAD
MOUNTAIN
BIKE
SIZING CHART - MEN
Rider height
in cm
148 - 152
152 - 160
160 - 168
168 - 175
175 - 183
183 - 191
191 - 198
SIZING CHART - WOMEN
Suggested frame size
47 - 48
49 - 50
51 - 52 - 53
54 - 55
56 - 57 - 58
58 - 59 - 60
61 - 62 - 63
5 - Downtube
6 - Bottom Brackett
7 - Seatstays
8 - Chainstays
XXS
XS
S
M
L
XL
XXL
Rider height
in cm
147 - 155
155 - 160
160 - 165
165 - 172
172 - 180
183 - 191
191 - 198
Suggested frame size
44 - 45 - 46
47 - 48 - 49
50 - 51 - 52
53 - 54 - 55
56 - 57
58 - 59 - 60
61 - 62 - 63
XXS
XS
S
M
L
XL
XXL
3
GROUPSET
THE GROUPSET IS THE
COLLECTION OF THE
WORKING PARTS ON THE
BIKE AND GENERALLY
INCLUDES:
2
4
10
THE DRIVETRAIN
9
5
7
1
> REAR DERAILLEUR
> FRONT DERAILLEUR
> REAR SHIFTERS
> FRONT SHIFTERS
> CABLES
8
SIZING CHART - MEN
Rider height
in cm
148 - 158
158 - 168
168 - 178
178 - 185
185 - 193
193 - 198
191 - 198
ROAD BIKES
THE GEARS
6
1 - Suspension fork
2 - Headtube
3 - Toptube
4 - Seattube
5 - Downtube
6 - Bottom Brackett
7 - Seatstays
8 - Chainstays
9 - Rear shock
10 - Suspension pivot
> CHAINRINGS
> CRANKS
> CHAIN
> CASSETTE
The groupset is one of the most important
features of your bike, as it is the sum of the
working parts and directly contributes to
performance and enjoyment. The groupset
models below are arranged within brands,
starting with the cheapest and moving down
towards the best quality/most expensive.
Suggested frame size
13 - 14
15 - 16
17 - 18
19 - 20
21 - 22
23 - 24
61 - 62 - 63
XS
S
M
L
XL
XXL
XXL
All levels of groupset
perform the same function,
but the lower-end models
will have less gears and will
be heavier. As you move
higher up the groupset
models, the number of gears
increases, and/or the weight
becomes lighter and the
durability is better.
- Ultegra 10-speed
- Ultegra Di2 10-speed
electronic
- Dura-Ace 11-speed
- Dura-Ace Di2
11-speed electronic
- Record 11-speed
- Super Record
11-speed
- Athena EPS 11-speed
electronic
- Record EPS 11-speed
electronic
- Super Record EPS
11-speed electronic
MOUNTAIN BIKES
- Black Red 11-speed
- Red 10-speed
- Red 22 11-speed
- X9 10-speed
- X0 10/11-speed
- XX1 11-speed
SIZING CHART - WOMEN
Rider height
in cm
148 - 158
158 - 168
168 - 178
178 - 185
Suggested frame size
13 - 14
15 - 16
17 - 18
19+
XS
S
M
L
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
- Deore XT 9/10-speed
- Saint 9-speed
- XTR 10-speed
GROUPSET
FRAME
MOUNTAIN BIKE
AFTER THE FRAME,
THE WHEELS ARE THE
MOST IMPORTANT
COMPONENT OF YOUR
BICYCLE. THE WHEELS
SPECCED ON NEW
BIKES ARE MATCHED TO
THE PRICE CATEGORY.
IDEAL WHEEL
SIZE FOR YOU ?
MOUNTAIN BIKES FOR
ADULTS COME IN THREE
DIFFERENT WHEEL SIZES.
IN ORDER TO DETERMINE
THE MOST APPROPRIATE
WHEEL SIZE FOR YOU,
HERE’S A GUIDE:
Entry-level bikes will
come with heavier
wheels, while more
expensive bikes will come
with lighter wheels.
Once you’ve bought
a bike that fits your
budget, start saving to
treat yourself to a new
wheelset – it’s the best
upgrade you can make on
your bike.
1
2
4
5
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
A 27.5ER IS IDEAL IF YOU:
Are female
Are a male under 165cm in height
Are keen on cross-country racing
Are keen on technical trail riding
Are keen on enduro racing
A 26ER IS IDEAL IF YOU:
Are a teenager
Are shorter than 155cm in height
Are unsure if mountain biking
will be ‘your thing’
Are on a really tight budget
29
3
27.5
A 29ER IS IDEAL IF YOU:
Are over 1.80m tall (male)
Participate in
marathons/stage races
Are concerned about
your time in races
Are a strong rider
(male and female)
The lighter your wheels,
the more efficient they
are, markedly improving
your bike’s overall
performance.
1 - Rim
2 - Spokes
3 - Hub
4 - Tyre
5 - Quick-release
WHAT IS THE
26
WHEELS
WHEELS
TYRES
ROAD BIKE
ROAD BIKE TYRES AREN'T AS
COMPLEX AS MOUNTAIN BIKE
TYRES, BUT THERE ARE SOME
IMPORTANT POINTS TO NOTE:
WIDTH: They come in various
widths, ranging from 18-25mm.
There are wider tyres, but they're
mostly used on tandems and touring
less rolling resistance.
PUNCTURE PROTECTION: Tyres
reinforced to be more puncture
resistant are heavier, but more more
reliable.
FOLDING: Folding tyres don't have
a wire bead so can collapse for easy
portability. They're also about 100g
lighter than a standard wire-bead
tyre – and more expensive.
CLINCHER: Most tyres are 'clincher
style', which requires an inner tube
and which hooks into the rim.
BIKE
>MOUNTAIN
MOUNTAIN
BIKE
TUBULAR: A sealed tyre-tube
TUBED AND TUBELESS: Most bikes come with
combination that is glued to a
special rim. These are very light
and expensive and used mostly by
professional racers.
tubed tyres, but can be converted to tubeless.
Tubeless tyres have no tube but the tyre and
rim are one sealed unit that contains a liquid
sealant that seals small punctures while you are
riding. Tubeless tyres cannot pinch-flat.
You minimise puncture risk significantly with
tubeless.
TREAD: Most tyres are slick or have
a small grooved tread. The grooves
help minimise the amount of water
sprayed up by the tyres in wet
conditions.
COMPOUND: The composition
of the tread that determines road
surface grip. Softer compounds
than harder compounds. Some tyre
models use a combination of the
two.
TUBES: Until tubeless road tyres
become the norm (it's in progress),
tubes will be essential spares on
every ride. Never run low on spare
tube stock...
MOST ROAD TYRES
ARE SLICK WITH A THIN
GROOVE PATTERN
DIAMETER: This is the same measure as wheel
size – the distance across the tyre. The current
range of tyres across all popular mountain bike
sizes is:
Kiddies/Youth – 12-inch,
16-inch, 20-inch, 24-inch;
Adult: 26-inch, 27.5-inch, 29-inch.
WIDTH: This is the broadness of the tyre. A
narrower tyre will weigh less, shed mud well
TREAD PATTERN: An aggressive tread pattern
will have bigger knobs and a square-edged
profile to provide excellent traction – ideal for
a front tyre. A moderate tread pattern will have
smaller, closer spaced knobs with a rounder
profile to provide lower rolling resistance – ideal
for a back tyre.
SIDEWALL: Tyres with reinforced (thicker)
resistance to sidewall cuts.
THE BEST TYRE FOR YOU?
CONDITIONS
Dry, hard surfaces – wider tyres with moderate-closely spaced knobs
Damp, soft surfaces – narrower tyres with wider spaced knobs
Rocky terrain – wider tyres with reinforced sidewalls and moderately–widely spaced knobs
TYPE OF RIDING
Dirt roads and basic trails – wider tyres with moderate-closely spaced knobs
Intermediate trails and marathon races – wider front tyre with aggressive knob pattern;
rounded profile faster-rolling rear tyre. Both should have reinforced sidewalls.
Advanced trails and serious gravity riding or racing –
very wide tyres with aggressive knob pattern and reinforced sidewalls
ROUND PROFILE
MODERATE
TREAD PATTERN
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
and grip better in damp conditions. A wider
tyre will provide a greater surface area for
traction in firm and dry conditions and will be
more comfortable due to the greater air volume.
It’s best to go for a slightly wider front tyre for
optimal traction in corners.
SQUARE EDGED
AGGRESSIVE
TREAD PATTERN
THERE ARE TWO MAIN BRAKE TYPES – MECHANICAL (COMMONLY
REFERRED TO AS SIDE-PULL BRAKES OR V-BRAKES) AND HYDRAULIC
BRAKES, FOUND ON MOST MOUNTAIN BIKES.
HYDRAULIC DISC BRAKES:
CARE AND REPLACEMENT
> are very powerful and reliable
in all conditions
> operate with hydraulic fluid
movement in a sealed system
> are more expensive than
mechanical brakes
> are high-precision with very
limited adjustability
Brake pads on both braking systems
wear down with use and should be
replaced when braking performance
becomes poor.
MECHANICAL BRAKES:
> moderately powerful and less
reliable in wet conditions
> operate with a mechanical
cable system
> are less expensive to buy and
maintain than hydraulic disc
brakes
> Are easy to adjust
MECHANICAL
The duration of the pads’ life will
depend on how often the bike is
ridden, how hard the rider is on
braking and the kind of conditions
in which the bike is ridden – wet and
muddy conditions can accelerate
brake pad wear significantly.
Expect to replace brake pads
regularly if you ride often. See it
more as an investment in your safety
than an extra cost.
HYDRAULIC DISC
GEARS
MOST ADULT BICYCLES THESE DAYS COME WITH GEARS. GEARS ARE
EVEN PREVALENT ON MANY KIDS’ BIKES. THE GREAT THING ABOUT
GEARS IS THAT THEY ALLOW YOU TO PEDAL UP AND DOWN JUST
ABOUT ANY GRADIENT ON ANY SURFACE. THERE ARE VARIOUS GEAR
OPTIONS ON NEW BIKES, WHICH CAN BE CONFUSING.
HERE’S A BASIC EXPLANATION:
1. FRONT DERAILLEUR:
This shifts the
chain between
the chainrings.
2. REAR DERAILLEUR:
This shifts the
chain across the
various sprockets
3. CASSETTE: This is
the group of
sprockets fixed to
the hub on the back
wheel. There are between eight
and 11 on modern bicycles.
4. CRANKSET: The levers that link
your pedals to your chainrings
5. CHAINRINGS: These are the big
cogs attached to the cranks/
pedals. There are between one
and three on modern bicycles
6. CHAIN: The ‘thread’ that
connects the chainrings and
the cassette
7. PEDAL: This is where the pedal
goes to give you a platform
on which to power the entire
drivetrain.
GEAR OPTIONS
To determine the total number
of gears on a bike, you multiply
the number of chainrings by the
number of sprockets.
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
So 3 chainrings x 10 sprockets =
30 gears.
In recent years, there’s been a shift
towards simplification by parts
manufacturers, which has led to
the speccing of two chainrings or
even one chainring. By increasing
the number and tooth-count of the
rear sprockets, they’ve managed to
create a satisfactory range of gear
ratios with less hardware.
SHIFTERS: Gear shifters are
situated on your handlebars so that
you can shift without compromising
control. They come in two
main styles – ‘rapid-fire’ levers
and ‘twistshift’. Most gears are
operated mechanically via cables,
but some top-end road cycling
systems have electronic shifting
options.
GEARS
BRAKES
BRAKES
HOW MANY GEARS
SHOULD YOU HAVE?
THERE’S NOT REALLY
A RIGHT OR WRONG
ANSWER TO THIS
QUESTION AND
IT CAN VARY FOR
ROAD CYCLING AND
MOUNTAIN BIKING.
HOWEVER,
HERE’S A GENERAL
GUIDE:
> 3 CHAINRINGS
(24-30 GEARS):
SOCIAL,
RECREATIONAL,
SPORTY RIDER
> 2 CHAINRINGS
(18-22 GEARS):
SPORTY, SERIOUS,
COMPETITIVE,
FANATICAL RIDER
> 1 CHAINRING
(10-11 GEARS):
SERIOUS,
COMPETITIVE,
FANATICAL RIDER
SUSPENSION
SUSPENSION FORK
MOST MOUNTAIN BIKES COME
WITH A SUSPENSION FORK, WHICH
ADDS COMFORT AND CONTROL
TO YOUR RIDE.
HERE ARE THE MAIN TERMS
RELATING TO SUSPENSION AND
WHAT THEY MEAN:
TRAVEL
> SHORT-TRAVEL FORK:
80-110mm. Designed for
smooth–moderately rough
terrain. Found on entry-level
bikes and bikes for marathon and cross-country racing.
> MEDIUM-TRAVEL FORK:
120-140mm. Designed for
moderate-rough terrain and
medium-long descents. Found
on bikes that offer slightly
relaxed geometry, ideal for
all-day riding and aggressive
trail riding.
> LONG-TRAVEL FORK:
150-170mm. Designed for rough
terrain and steep or long
descents. Found on bikes with
relaxed geometry designed for
descending at speed
LOCKOUT
Most forks have a lockout option
with a lockout switch on the fork.
More expensive models have a
remote lockout lever, which allows
you to operate the fork setting
without removing your hand from the
handlebar.
You would lock the suspension
out on smooth roads or up long,
predictable climbs to eliminate
‘bobbing’ and improve efficiency.
COMPRESSION
This is the speed at which the fork
uses its travel/absorbs impact when
you hit an obstacle. Too slow and the
ride will be harsh. Too fast and the
fork will 'bottom out' easily, making
for a harsh ride.
REBOUND
This is the speed at which fork
bounces back to its original position
after compressing on a bump. This
can be adjusted on mid-range and
top-end forks.
You would adjust the rebound to
improve the overall smoothness
of the ride. Too fast and the ride
becomes bouncy and unstable;
too slow and the ride becomes harsh
and hard on the body.
SAG
This is how much of the fork travel
is used when you sit on the bike
without pedalling (determined by
your body weight). This needs to be
between 20-30% of the total travel
and can be adjusted by adding or
removing air pressure. You need a
shock pump to add or remove air
pressure.
You would adjust sag when you buy
the bike (initial set-up) and then
around once a month to ensure the
air pressure remains consistent and
appropriate for you.
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
REAR SHOCK
A rear shock improves overall ride
comfort and control, but is more
costly. There are different makes and
models of rear shock incorporated
into various suspension frame
designs, but
most operate
on an air-based
system and
can be set
harder, softer
or completely
locked out.
As with a
suspension
fork, you
can set sag,
compression
and rebound
speeds
according
to your body
weight and/or
riding style.
1 - Steerer tube
2 - Crown
3 - Stanchion Brace
4 - Air pressure inlet
5 - Dropout
6 - Rebound adjuster
7 - Travel adjuster/lockout and
Compression adjuster
8 - Stanchion
9 - Lower
10 - Through-axle
1
2
4
7
8
3
9
6
5
10
CONTACT POINTS
BACKSIDE - SADDLE
IF YOU’RE NEW TO CYCLING,
YOU’RE GOING TO ENDURE A
SHORT ‘BREAKING-IN’ PERIOD
TO GET USED TO SITTING ON
A SADDLE AND PEDALLING.
IF, AFTER A WHILE (5-6 RIDES
OR 10-14 DAYS), YOU ARE
STILL EXPERIENCING SADDLE
DISCOMFORT, ASSUMING YOU
HAVE THE CORRECT CYCLING
SHORTS, THEN YOU NEED TO
CONSIDER A DIFFERENT SADDLE.
Saddles are quite personal
because we all have different
shaped bodies and sit slightly
differently when pedalling. It’s
crucial to get the right saddle
for you otherwise you won’t look
forward to riding your bike like you
should.
The saddle the bike is sold with
isn’t necessarily incorrect, but it
may just not be the correct saddle
for you.
THE KEY POINTS ABOUT SADDLE
COMFORT:
> GENDER – the female body is
obviously different to the male
body and therefore requires a
saddle that’s designed for
female comfort.
> WIDTH – generally, women and large men are more comfortable
on a wider, less-curved saddle
because of a wider pelvic
structure than medium and
small men.
> SHAPE – Different saddle
WIDER, HIGHER DENSITY
SADDLE
NARROWER, LOWER-DENSITY
SADDLE
WOMEN-SPECIFIC
SADDLE
shapes (even slightly different) can make a difference to riding
comfort due to the different
pressure points it develops.
> DENSITY – a softer saddle isn’t
necessarily more comfortable
than a hard one. In fact, most
often a higher-density saddle
is better because it creates
less friction than a lowerdensity saddle.
SAME SADDLE MODEL, DIFFERENT WIDTHS
CHOOSING THE RIGHT SADDLE:
> We have an in-store saddle
fitting system that can assess
which is the best type of saddle
for you. This is free, non invasive and takes only a few
minutes and could make
the world of difference to your
comfort.
> Once you find a saddle that
suits you, it is likely to last
you for a few years, assuming it
doesn’t get damaged. If you ride
both road and mountain bikes,
it’s worth buying the same
saddle for both bikes.
> To determine a position of
optimal comfort and control,
you should get a professional
bike set-up done. We offer this
in-store at an additional cost. It
requires an appointment and will
take 45-60 minutes. It’s time
and money that you are
investing in your health, fitness
and long-term enjoyment of
cycling.
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
EXTREME CURVATURE
(TOO NARROW)
SHALLOW CURVATURE
(OPTIMAL WIDTH)
CONTACT POINTS
HANDS - HANDLE BARS/STEM
WHEN RIDING YOUR BIKE, YOUR HANDS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR
SUPPORTING YOUR UPPER BODY, CONTROLLING THE STEERING
AND OPERATING YOUR GEARS AND BRAKES. THEY’RE A KEY
CONTACT POINT WITH YOUR BIKE AND THEREFORE NEED TO BE
CAREFULLY CONSIDERED IN TERMS OF COMFORT.
ROAD BIKE
WIDTH: THE MEASUREMENT FROM
THE CENTRE OF THE BAR ON THE
RIGHT TO THE CENTRE OF THE BAR
ON THE LEFT.
> A wider handlebar gives you
more steering leverage and
opens up your chest more for
more efficient breathing.
> A narrower handlebar can
reduce muscular tightness and
fatigue in your back, neck and
shoulder muscles.
> As a starting guide, your
handlebar width should match
your shoulder width. Handlebars
are measured in centimetres
between 36 and 46.
REACH: THE WIDTH OF YOUR
HANDLEBAR FROM THE ‘TOP’ TO
THE END OF THE ‘DROPS’ AS SEEN
FROM THE SIDE.
which can be uncomfortable, as
it forces more of your weight
onto your arms instead of
distributing your weight between
your arms and your backside.
BIKE
>MOUNTAIN
MOUNTAIN
BIKE
WIDTH: THE MEASUREMENT FROM ONE
BACK-SWEEP: THE ANGLE OF THE
END TO THE OTHER END.
HORIZONTAL CURVE FROM THE MIDDLE
OF THE BAR TO THE ENDS.
> A wider handlebar gives you
more leverage and control,
but too wide can cause wrist and
hand discomfort.
DROP: THE DEPTH OF THE BAR
CURVE.
RISE: THE VERTICAL DISTANCE OF THE
> A drop that’s too deep will rotate
your hips too far forward,
causing pressure on your
pirenium and strain on your
hamstrings.
CURVE FROM THE MIDDLE OF THE
BAR TO THE ENDS.
> If the reach is too long, it can pull
you forward on your saddle
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
UP-SWEEP: THE ANGLE OF THE VERTICAL
> A too-narrow bar can
compromise bike control and
cause unnecessary arm muscle
strain, especially in the triceps.
> The general starting width
should be 10-15cm wider than
your shoulders. Wider bars can
usually be trimmed to suit you.
> A too-deep drop also forces
you to lift your head higher to
look ahead,
creating
neck
muscle
stress.
> This angle can vary for different shape
handlebars allowing a rider to find the
most comfortable wrist/hand position.
CURVE FROM THE MIDDLE OF THE BAR TO
THE ENDS.
> This angle can vary for different shape
handlebars allowing a rider to find the
most comfortable wrist/hand position.
Top view
Back-sweep
> A flat or straight handlebar with
no rise gives you more weighting over
your front wheel, which improves
cornering and climbing control.
Ideal for those racing marathons,
stage races and cross-country races.
> A riser – or semi-riser –
handlebar offers a more
comfortable, upright positions,
ideal for riders that aren’t
concerned about racing, or who
do a lot of gravity-related riding.
Front view
Rise
STEM: THIS IS THE STRAIGHT TUBE THAT
CONNECTS YOUR HANDLEBAR TO YOUR
FRAME. STEMS COME IN A VARIETY OF
LENGTHS AND ANGLES, WHICH ALLOWS
YOU TO FINE-TUNE YOUR IDEAL
HANDLEBAR SET-UP.
Flat or straight bar
Semi-riser bar
Riser bar
CONTACT POINTS
FEET - PEDALS
YOUR PEDALS ARE OBVIOUSLY
THE PLATFORMS THAT ALLOW
YOU TO PROPEL THE BIKE
FORWARD WHEN PEDALLING;
THEY’RE ALSO ‘PEGS’ THAT
SUPPORT YOUR BODYWEIGHT,
ALLOWING YOU TO CONTROL
YOUR CENTRE OF GRAVITY AND
BODY POSITION.
FLAT
allows you to be more stable and in control
when descending and cornering
> EFFICIENCY – you can push down
FLAT WITH ADJUSTABLE TOE CLIP
cleating in-and-out process, there’s no
thought required on foot placement on
your pedals
> FLAT: the most basic pedal.
Ideal for: SOCIAL OR
RECREATIONAL RIDERS
> INJURY PREVENTION – Pedalling is a
repetitive action that can lead to chronic
FLAT-PLATFORM
allows you to secure your feet to
your pedals for improved
.
Ideal for: SPORTY RIDERS
> FLAT-PLATFORM: a more
Ideal for: SPORTY YOUTH
RIDERS; SERIOUS GRAVITY
RIDERS
CLIPLESS - ROAD
> CLIPLESS:
pedal system that mates your
pedal to your cycling shoe.
This requires buying a cyclingspecific shoe to which you can
fit the cleat.
AND PULL UP when pedalling, using more
of each pedal stroke for propulsion
> SIMPLICITY – Once you’ve mastered the
There are four main pedal types:
advanced style of flat pedal,
usually wider and made from
more durable, lighter material.
THIS IS THE MOST POPULAR AND EFFICIENT
PEDAL TYPE AS IT OFFERS THESE BENEFITS:
> SAFETY – being anchored to your pedals
TYPES
> FLAT WITH ADJUSTABLE
TOE CLIP:
WHY GO CLIPLESS?
CLIPLESS - MOUNTAIN BIKE
Ideal for: SPORTY,
SERIOUS, COMPETITIVE,
FANATICAL RIDERS
OUR SIMPLE GUIDE TO BUYING THE RIGHT BIKE FIRST TIME
injury or discomfort through poor
most clipless pedals allows for
biomechanical nuance forgiveness and
reduced injury risk
> DURABILITY - entry- and mid-range
clipless pedals are robust and can last for
years, requiring minimal maintenance. You
will need to buy new cleats from time to
time as these wear with use.
Note: There is a steep, but short learning curve
associated with clipless and flat with adjustable toe
clip pedals. The reward is that the transformation
from flat or flat-platform pedals is significant for
anyone that enjoys cycling regularly.
ONCE YOU’VE MADE YOUR BIKE CHOICE, CONSIDER
THE FOLLOWING ASSOCIATED SERVICES THAT WILL
ENSURE YOU GET MAXIMUM RETURN ON YOUR
NEW INVESTMENT:
TOYOTA SUPERCYCLING CLUB
South Africa’s largest cycling club that offers
support for new and experienced cyclists with
organised, safe training rides and loads of
member benefits.
FITTRACK
The personalised online coaching system
that can take you to your goals based
around your lifestyle and time-constrained
schedule.
CYCLE LAB ONLINE
When convenience is critical,
our online store offers the widest
range of bikes, spares and
accessories.
PWC BIKE PARK
A international-standard trail park
graded for Beginner, Intermediate and
Advanced mountain bikers and safe for
women and children.
CYCLE LAB WORKSHOP
We’ve taken South African bike
servicing and maintenance to a new
level, both in terms of quality and
service.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON
ALL OF OUR SERVICES,
VISIT WWW.CYCLELAB.COM
Tel: 011 707 4700 > email: retailmanager@cyclelab.com
Address:
GPS co-ordinates:
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