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Should I Choose a Road Bike or Hybrid Bike?

buy a road bike or hybridThe earliest bicycles known to be in existence where from the 1800s. Since then there has been a ride variety of bicycles manufactured in different brands, different styles and for very different purposes. It seems every new bike made is becoming more advanced and more refined than the last. Sometimes deciding on a specific type of bicycle can be quite daunting. So when choosing a bicycle to meet your needs, which style do you choose?

Two popular styles today are the hybrid bikes and the road bikes. Before choosing which of these two bikes are the most appropriate for you, it’s a good idea to ask yourself a few questions, such as:

  1. What type of riding will I be doing on this bike?
  2. What level of experience do I have with bicycles?
  3. Am I riding for sport or more for leisure?
  4. What type of terrain will I be riding on?
  5. Am I looking for comfortable bike?
  6. Is speed important in a bike I choose?

Choosing Between a Road Bike or Hybrid

Road Bikes

drop handlebars for road bikesRoad bikes are aerodynamic and lightweight. These bikes are designed with a drop handle bar and skinny tires. This style was created for long distance riding, speed and endurance. Typically this type of bike is ideal for the experience sport activist and cyclist. The tires are specifically designed for asphalt or sidewalks.

A road bike does not fair well on rugged terrain or dirt paths. The skinny tires are just not meant for bumpy ground at all. Yet they ride quite smooth on asphalt. If you are into riding as a sport, this bicycle style will suit you quite well. Keep in mind your body position on this type of bike tends to be more of a leaning forward position which aids in speed and endurance. For some this position seems awkward at first, but the more you ride it, the easier and more natural it will feel.

Pros:

  • Great for exercise and bike sports
  • Ideal for speed
  • Good for long distance riding

Cons:

  • Not suitable on rugged terrains and dirt paths
  • Not always ideal for beginners

Hybrid Bikes

flat handlebar used in hybrid bikesHybrid bikes are a great cross between road bikes and mountain bikes. This style takes the best of both bikes and blends it into an all-purpose bicycle. Hybrid bikes have a flat handlebar and wider wheels. This gives you a more upright, relaxed riding position. This bike is great for leisure rides, running errands and commuting. It is also a good bike for those who are not quite experienced riders.

The wheels on this bike make it ideal on or off the road. Hybrids can take on rugged terrain and dirt paths with ease. Many people like this bike because it is built for comfort from the upright riding position all the way to the cushy saddle seat. If you are looking for an everyday bike to just get around town or enjoy a summer day, a hybrid is definitely good bike for that purpose. Read the detailed guide to hybrid bikes.

Pros:

  • All-purpose type of bicycle
  • Ideal for even beginners
  • Can ride on or off roads
  • Comfortable riding position

Cons:

  • Not meant for super long distances.
  • Not built for professional riding

Deciding Between a Hybrid and a Road Bike

The differences between a road bike and a hybrid are like black and white. Once you look at the pros and cons of each, and decide your riding style, it shouldn’t be hard to figure out exactly what bike meets your needs. If you are still having a hard time deciding, I suggest you look at reviews of bikes on our site to help you narrow down your search for the right bike.

It’s also important to get feedback from others as well. Ask friends and neighbors what bike style they prefer. Once you have collected a little bit of data, choosing a bike for your style of riding should be a breeze.


Final Thoughts

I can not tell you what bike is best for you. However, I can tell you I like hybrid bikes. I have never been a sporty-type of girl, but I do love the leisurely rides that this bike style offers. My riding style is carefree and adventurous. So having a bike that does well on or off the road, gives me the ability to go where I want to go.

If I was more active and into bike racing, I definitely would go with a road bike, however that is not the case for me.  Take a few minutes and decide what is the best style for you and your personal needs. If you are still unsure, go to your local bicycle shop and sit on a few bikes to get a feel for how they will ride. Sometimes, actually testing out a bicycle, will show you, what style really does work the best for you.

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