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Best Bicycles for Seniors

Choosing a Bike
April 02, 2019
Best Bicycles for Seniors

 

Hey guys, Dustin here. CEO of sixthreezero. Wanna talk to you today about the best bikes for seniors. We get a lot of questions about what are the right bikes for seniors, also what even classifies someone as a senior. Let's get into it and I'll explain.

First and foremost, using the word senior, it's hard to identify what does that really mean. Does that mean over the age of 55, over the age of 60, over the age of 65, etc.? I'm really gonna break it down. When we talk about what are the best bikes for seniors, that's a very broad question, just like asking what's the best bike for people. For this video, let's just classify someone in the senior category at least over the age of 55. So if we're talking about someone, we're talking about seniors, if we're talking over the age of 55, that's a very broad spectrum of people. If it's someone say 55 and over, up to let's go as far as 100, there's a really wide range of physical ability that's going to lie in that spectrum. No different than if you just say, best bikes for people. When you talk about people there's a very broad spectrum of physical ability, heights, weights, desires, things of that nature.
When we talk about, what are the best bikes for seniors, let's break it down a little bit. First and foremost, if you're someone over the age of 55 and you haven't ridden a bike for a long time and you're just wanting to get back into and you're looking for light exercise, what I would recommend for somebody in that category would be a step-through comfort bike. This is a senior who maybe wants to ride every day but is riding at a leisurely pace and also is not very aggressive and doesn't want to go fast but is really focused on comfort. In this category, I'd be looking at a step-through bike, something that's easy to get on and off. Or, also a cruiser is a good idea, but just make sure the frame potentially has a step-through for someone shorter. If you have longer legs or a little bit taller, you don't need for it to be a step through.
If I'm talking about sixthreezero specifically, bikes that I would recommend from us would either the EVRY journey or any of our cruisers, the Around the Block, the In the Barrel or the Women's Cruisers, specifically for this category of senior I would really, really emphasize the EVRY journey. It's got easy on and off frame, step-through. It's got the forward pedaling design which allows you to put your feet flat on the ground when stopping. It also has a very comfortable seat and a versatile tire size. The tires are not too thick, not too thin, so it's really gonna allow you to do all types of ridings. You can go on hard packed trails, you can go on the pavement, and they're still thick enough to provide shock absorption and make the ride really comfortable.
That category of seniors we're saying is the lightly active senior looking for casual riding, distances of 20 miles or less per ride and typically speeds no more than 10 miles an hour but maybe up to 15 miles an hour. So that would be in that category.
Now, another crop of senior might be a highly active senior. Someone over the age of 55 who's in phenomenal shape and they've been riding a bike very often and their balance is impeccable just like it's always been. For that category of senior, really the sky's the limit on what type of bike you're gonna ride and what type of riding you wanna do. I really wouldn't disqualify any model if you're athletic ability is still great, balance is still great and your desire is still there. You could go with a mountain bike, you could go with a road bike, you could go with a comfort bike, you could go with a cruiser bike, it's really up to you to determine. Now the one thing I will say is just to make sure that you feel comfortable on whatever bike you're choosing. If it's a road bike, make sure you're comfortable with clicking shoes in and out, maybe you want a road bike to be active but you don't wanna click your feet in and out because that could be a little more dangerous in terms of stopping and getting your feet on the ground after you stop. So for someone over the age of 55, if you're gonna step into a road bike, please I'd recommend that it's not your first bike getting back into bicycling. So if you've been off a bike for 10, 15, 20 years plus, I would not recommend getting into a road mountain bike, but if you've been riding a lot, you're comfortable, stick with the bikes you know you can do and make a selection based on what type of riding you wanna do. If you wanna do long distances, speeds, things like that.
Which segues me back into another section of the seniors and this is the rider that ah, I haven't ridden a bike in 10 years. I haven't ridden a bike in 20 years. I haven't ridden a bike in 30 years. What bike is right for me? That's a great question. So for this rider, I would first wanna do an assessment. I would say, are you still comfortable balancing on a bike? So let's say for this specific answer, this customer says yes. I am still comfortable balancing on a bike. What you're gonna want is you're gonna want a bike but you haven't ridden for a long time. The key for this rider is to find something that keeps you low to the ground, has an easy on/off frame, something that's easy to steer and won't put too much stress on your body and your muscles while you're getting back into riding because it could be your body might not be adjusted to it, you're not familiar with ... Your muscles are just getting used to the different strains and pains in your back and things like that. What you're gonna be looking for is very similar to the first customer we talked about, something that's comfortable, upright riding position I'd think would be great. Something that's easy to steer so you don't wanna be leaning too far forward, that's gonna be a little bit more sensitive steering. So something that's got a little bit wider handlebar, little wider grip, not too wide. Something you can control. Again, I like to recommend the pedal forward bikes, an example would be the Electra Townie or the sixthreezero EVRY journey. These are really ... Or Tuesday has a model just like it with the pedal forward, so I would look for a pedal forward bike. These bikes are great because if you're just getting back into bicycling, they're very easy to ride. They have wide tires, but not super wide so it absorbs the shock, makes the ride comfortable and also with the pedal forward design when you stop, you can get your feet flat on the ground. But when you ride, you can still have ample leg extension because of the forward pedaling. It's an interesting feature and it's really great for someone getting back into riding because you can keep your seat lower to the ground which will allow you to balance to get your feet out and feel safe if you need to at any given moment.
Rewinding then, if the question is to a senior wanting to get back into biking is, are you comfortable balancing and their next answer is not really. I'm not really sure I want to actually control the balance of the bike. If that's the case, I would go the direction of a tricycle. There's actually a lot of options now that exist within tricycles. There's a whole bunch of subcategories that have come out. There are recumbent tricycles, there's your normal upright seated position tricycle, there's also now electric tricycles that have come out. So if you're looking for a traditional trike, actually sixthreezero is gonna be coming out with a tricycle later this year. Some companies that currently have some tricycles on the market would be Schwinn. They have available on Amazon that has some decent reviews. Then there's also Sun Bikes has a very wide variety of tricycles. The Sun Bikes I don't believe can be sold online so you'd have to find a local dealer to purchase one of those, but they do have dealers all over the country.
Those are two really great options, good price points. You're gonna be looking at a price point on a tricycle anywhere from about 200 at the absolute lowest, up to sometimes 1500. Just depending on what features, what type of materials, what speeds. Tricycles are available in all different speed configurations. One speed, three speeds, seven speeds. I don't think I've seen 21 speeds 'cause generally speaking, a tricycle rider is not gonna be wanting to go super fast. Conquering hills on a tricycle is gonna be pretty difficult considering the weight of the bike. So typically you won't see 21 speeds on tricycles. But again, if you're not feeling comfortable but you still wanna ride, look at a tricycle.
Now, those are the upright tricycles I talked about. Now there's also recumbent tricycles. Actually Sun I believe makes the recumbent bikes. There's also a company called TerraTrike that exists and they make some really great sit down tricycles. These are really interesting because they're a whole different kind of seat. It's got a back to it and it's a very wide seat and your feet are actually like straight out in front of you, you're almost like laying down a little bit. Your back is up but you're sitting very low to the ground. It's an interesting ride and it'd be super comfortable and if you don't like the idea of an upright ride, that's a great option too for seniors.
Generally speaking, again to kind of review, when you say bikes for seniors there's a very, very wide, broad spectrum of the type of riders and who's riding. Now, if I'm going to make one suggestion just generally speaking, what's a good category for bikes for seniors? I'm going to say two categories. One is a cruiser bike or comfort bike. When I talk about comfort bikes I'm really talking about bikes that have step-through frames and wide saddles. Sometimes suspension seat posts, suspension forks, things like that. These are the kind of features that are gonna soften the ride, eliminate the shock and the reverberation that runs through your body when you go over curbs and rocks and things like that. As a senior, you're gonna want something that's gonna take a little bit of the beating off of your body when you ride so look for a suspension fork, suspension seat posts, things like that. Also, look for the seat. A comfortable seat. You're gonna want your body to be comfortable. You don't wanna get off with pain. Lastly, I would say look for an upright riding position. You wanna have your back up, your shoulders comfortable. You wanna have as much tension off your body as possible. It's just gonna make the overall riding experience so much better for you.
If you're looking at sixthreezero, you can go to the top of our website and browse. A couple of models I would recommend is the Body Ease, available for men's and women's. The EVRY journey, available men's and women's. Those are great. Those are great options for seniors. Also, the Electra Townie is another brand. They have the ... Their bike is also great for seniors. I know Raleigh bicycles also has some great comfort bikes that exist out there that I would suggest you take a look at.
The other thing I wanna say is when you're looking for a bike, don't be turned off by men's and women's. Men's and women's is simply a classification a lot of times on color, but if you don't have a color preference and you're more concerned with the frame and the riding position, essentially any bike is unisex depending on frame size and your height. But if the height range says it will fit you, choosing a women's bike, a man choosing a women's bike or a woman choosing a men's bike is totally okay. It's all about finding the right bike for your body.
If you have any specific questions, feel free to reach out. You can reach us by phone, 310-982-2877. Or email theteam@sixthreezero.com. Please, go to our website, browse on top. You can shop for men's, women's. We also have a category, bikes for seniors, that you can take a look at. We've curated what we believe to be the best bikes for seniors. Also, you can enter your height and weight in our body fit calculator and our system will give you a thumbs up, thumbs down and tell you which bikes fit your body. If you get a thumbs down, reach out to us. We can help customize a bike that will fit you 'cause our goal at sixthreezero is to find a bike that will your body.

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