What’s a hybrid bike?

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For those new to bike commuting, choosing the right bike is important. A cruiser-style bike is good for comfort, while a hybrid bike offers performance, comfort, and safety features. Hybrid bikes have thinner tires, multiple gears, and adjustable handlebars, making them perfect for daily commutes. They also have comfort features like seatposts and suspension forks. Cyclists should always wear a helmet and brightly colored clothing, and use lights for night riding.

Now that a bike commute is starting to replace a car commute for many Americans, new cycling enthusiasts find themselves asking the big question: Which bike is right for me? For those commuters who aren’t interested in a racing bike like the ones you might see on television at the Tour de France, a cruiser-style bike with one gear and thick tires might be the way to go. But for those looking for more performance and functionality combined with comfort, a hybrid bicycle will be just the thing.

A hybrid bicycle is a mid-performance bicycle, like those fancy road bikes you might see on television, and a mid-comfort bicycle aimed at keeping those aches and pains out of the equation during your cycling commute. A hybrid bicycle has thinner tires than a cruiser-style bicycle to allow for less rolling resistance. It also has a multitude of gears with an easy to use shifting system – don’t worry, they usually come with a super easy gearing for those steep climbs on the way to work or school – and many of the aero benefits of those road bikes. , such as drop bars, or handlebars that allow you to crouch into an aero position when you deem it necessary.

Hybrid bikes are also designed with your comfort and safety in mind. While specific features vary by brand, most companies design their hybrid bicycle with enough easy-to-use adjustments to suit your body. For example, most feature a more upright riding position to take the strain off your shoulders and neck, and many hybrid bikes will feature an adjustable stem that lets you raise or lower the handlebars with the simple turn of an Allen key.

Modeled after the comfort bike – a less performance-based bicycle meant for leisurely rides – many hybrids now come standard with seatposts and suspension forks to eliminate potholes in the road, as well as ergonomic saddles that feature a cutout in the center to relieve pressure on sensitive areas . These comfort features, combined with the aerodynamics and performance options gleaned from more expensive road bikes, make the hybrid bicycle perfect for your daily commute, the trip to the supermarket, or just a stroll around the block.

As with all cycling activities, cyclists should wear a helmet and brightly colored clothing. Many states now require both a headlight and a taillight for night or dusk riding, and all new bikes come with reflectors. Make sure you are visible, follow the flow of traffic and above all, enjoy the ride on your hybrid bike.

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