Are Upright Bicycles Good, More Comfortable and… Safer?
The “upright bike”, which can also be also known as: dutch bikes, city bikes, hybrids, are one of the most popular styles of bicycles available on the market due to their affordability as well as their comfortable riding position.
But, are they actually a good option for you and your riding needs? We’ll be discussing the benefits as well as the drawbacks of owning such a bike, which will hopefully help answer this very question.
What is an “Upright” Bicycle?
An upright bicycle refers to any bike that has a more relaxed and upright riding position. These bikes tend to be more suited to leisure usage, such as riding to the shops, or with friends for enjoyment and exercise purposes.
Some solid examples of upright bikes could include, the classic city bike, dutch bikes and hybrid bikes. This is because comfort is at the forefront of the design and geometry.
These types of bikes also incorporate other offshoots which are also based around a similar comfortable design, such as electric upright bikes, which are very popular for leisure usage as well as commuting.
Arguably, due to the upright nature of the riding position, mountain bikes could also fit into this category, however they are a little specialist in comparison to the style of riding the city and dutch bikes offer. But, it could still be an option for you to consider.
Upright Bike [PROS + CONS]
|Affordable to buy||Some styles (electric) can be expensive|
|Affordable / easy to maintain||Can be heavy in weight|
|Comfortable riding position||Not aerodynamic|
|Great for leisure and commuting||Lacks versatility|
First and foremost, one of the biggest benefits of owning and riding a city bike etc is the fact that they don’t usually cost much to buy in the first place, and are often very affordable to maintain.
This is because the parts used to build these bikes tend to be more robust and hardwearing. Similarly, these components also tend to be more straightforward to maintain, making regular maintenance simpler.
However, some styles of upright bikes can be a little on the pricier side. For example, if you have an electric city bike, it will be expensive to buy as well as maintain, due to the e-bike specific components.
Additionally, upright bikes will often be heavier in comparison to an entry level road bike or lightweight mountain bike. This is because they are made for comfort and leisure usage, not high performance.
Because of this it’s safe to say that these bikes are not at all aerodynamic. They will however offer a comfortable riding position, which will allow you to travel pain free throughout your day.
Overall, the upright bikes are really great for leisure riding and commuting, but they do lack versatility. They’re not suited to off road riding. But they are more than capable of bike paths and town road riding.
Which Bike is Best for Posture?
Which bike is best for posture will largely depend on your body. However, as a general rule, any bikes that offer a more upright riding position will offer you a more comfortable riding posture.
This riding posture is less demanding than tucked in aerodynamic positions, and will therefore create less demand on your body. Mountain bikes also offer a more upright riding position in comparison to road bikes.
That being said, regardless of the style of bike you ride, it is still very important to stretch and do gentle exercise (like yoga) to help your posture.
Upright Bicycle FAQs
From working a large part of my time in cycling retail, I can tell I encountered many questions regarding upright style bikes.
Therefore, listed below are some of the most common questions asked by customers, where we aim to give a short yet accurate response.
Are Upright Bikes Good for Weight Loss?
Yes! Upright bikes are still bikes at the end of the day and therefore allow you to exercise. They’re a great option for those wanting to ride with the goal of losing weight as their main motivator.
Are Upright Bikes Bad for Knees?
No, riding an upright bike is not bad for your knees or joints. Unlike many sports, riding a bike is low impact, and therefore riding any style of bike is not bad for your knees.
Are Upright Bikes Better Than Recumbent?
Uprights and recumbents are very different styles of bike. Therefore, one is arguably not better than the other, but instead more suited to different individuals depending on that person’s needs and usages.
Are Upright Bikes More Comfortable?
Overall upright bikes will generically be more comfortable than other styles of bike. This is due to the relaxed geometry and riding style these types of bikes offer.
Are Upright Bikes Safer?
Upright bikes are no safer than any other bike, however because they are often ridden on bike paths with limited traffic, and their frame shape allows for a quick dismount, you could say that by default, they’re safer! But it’s still important to be aware of your surroundings, regardless of the bike you decide to ride.
Are Upright Bicycles Good?
In conclusion, upright bikes are a great option for those wanting a comfortable ride that offers a less demanding riding position.
They would be best suited to people getting into cycling who want a low maintenance and affordable option, either to exercise or for transport.
Upright bikes are also a solid option, and always will be, for commuters wanting something more practical (you can often fit many extras to uprights like pannier racks) and robust for riding into work.
Therefore, if you want a reliable bike that (hopefully) won’t break the bank, then an upright bike might be just the bike you need!
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