Road bikes are designed for riding on paved streets and going fast. They tend to be used for transportation, whether it be around town or a college campus. Road bicycles are also commonly seen as forms of recreation. One reason they’ve become so popular is the rising energy crisis. Road bikes offer a cheap, easy way to get around relatively short distances, as well as a ride that can be as relaxing or as exhilarating as the rider desires. Many road bikes are designed with young people in mind so that they can be easily maintained and operated. Some people use bikes as an alternative to treadmills, running machines, or other exercise equipment.
Road bikes usually fall into three categories. They are:
Mountain bikes or ATBs (all-terrain bikes) are designed for off road riding and are great for use on paved and crushed stone trails, hills, and ravines. They are also popular for use on roads. Mountain Biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and mountain biking enthusiasts are found all over the globe. Mountain biking is considered a fun, healthy and rewarding pastime or hobby.
Mountain bikes have wide tires, a “flat” handlebar, and direct-pull or disc brakes. Frames are often built of aluminum so they are lightweight and stiff, making them efficient to ride. The fork has a suspension or shock-absorbing feature to reduce hand/arm fatigue.
BMX stands for Bicycle Motocross and the bicycling sport is based on motocross motorcycle racing. The sport is generally thought to have started in the late 1960s. Schwinn was accredited for making the first BMX style bike which was called a Sting Ray. By the mid 1970s, many bicycle manufacturers recognized the growing popularity of the sport and started building bikes specifically for young bmxers.
BMX bikes come in many different sizes so that a diverse range of people can enjoy them. Riding can continue well into adulthood.
BMX bikes are used on dirt tracks for racing, in extreme games on ramps, and half pipes, and used for recreational purposes.
Beach cruiser bicycles can be considered an “old school” or a “vintage” style of bicycle since their history dates back to the 1930?s. Beach cruisers were very popular in the 1930?s through 1950?s. Beginning in the 1960?s, the beach cruiser began to sag in popularity. The bicycle market began to get crowded with a variety of other bicycle options including: sport style road bikes, mountain bikes, and others. Many consumers preferred the multi-speed capability of road bikes, off-road capability of mountain bikes, and in some cases the lighter weight and easier portability offered by competing styles of bikes.
Recumbent bicycles or “Bents” as they are often called in the US and Canada, are sit-down bikes, pedaled with the cyclist’s feet out in front. Recumbents are a pleasure to ride. You sit slightly reclined in a normal sitting position, back fully supported, arms relaxed, and neck straight. Compare this to the contorted riding position on a diamond frame bike.
Hybrids are an ideal bicycle for riding at high speeds on asphalt streets and tackling some rugged off-road trails, gravel, dirt streets, and other surfaces. Hybrids are not advisable if being used for riding over mountain tracks or extreme off-road paths. They are dependable if you ride on dirt roads and gravel roads.
Electric bicycles or e-bikes are similar to traditional bicycles but with the addition of an electric motor, battery, and controls to add a power assist when riding. Some models require the rider to pedal for the electric power assist to be available in a process called pedelec systems.