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Since BMX bikes are some of the most affordable bikes on the market today, it makes sense that many people want one. However, the BMX bike features a unique design, which often relies heavily on stunts and the skill of the rider. If you need to make a longer trip, you might wonder if the bike is good for long rides.
Is The BMX Bike Good For Long Rides? The geometry and design of a BMX bike make it uncomfortable for prolonged stints. Yes, you might have plenty of fun for the first few miles, but after the second mile, it becomes much harder to have fun. You won’t have any place to sit down comfortably, and this would affect your performance.
If you are still not convinced and you want to use a BMX bike to assist you with longer rides, you should consider looking at the rest of the article.
We will focus on the BMX bike and how it compares to the commuter bike. The commuter bike is the main bike for commuting longer distances.
If you are wondering whether Mountain Bikes Are Good For Long Distances or not, I wrote a whole article that I encourage you to read.
BMX Bikes And Commuting: Why Is It Challenging?
Off the bat, we can tell you that a BMX bike is not the best bike for commuting. BMX bike’s design tends to be uncomfortable over the longer term, and you need to constantly adjust to find comfort.
In the following section, we would look at a couple of the reasons why the BMX bike does not seem to be the best bike for commuting:
1- Riding Position
One of the most common trademarks of the BMX bike is seat positioning, which tends to be slightly lower than the handlebars and does not allow the legs to extend when pedaling. The main idea is that the rider should stand while riding, which would enable the legs to extend to the maximum and make it much easier to pedal.
While you can stand on your BMX bike and pedal for a few miles, it tends to be uncomfortable once you surpass the second mile. Most of us want to sit down and pedal the bike comfortably.
Unfortunately, this would not be possible with the BMX bike due to the seat. You would notice that it could be incredibly draining in terms of energy consumption.
2- Carrying Accessories
We all need to carry accessories when riding our bikes, which often involves mounting racks or fenders on the bike.
Due to the upright geometry of the commuter bike, you would have plenty of space on the rear and front to mount these accessories. Unfortunately, the BMX bike does not offer you the same luxury.
With your BMX bike, you would be left carrying a backpack. While some riders will enjoy carrying a backpack, others could feel uncomfortable. The backpack could pull you down, making it uncomfortable to ride the bike.
You might also enjoy reading: Are BMX Bikes Good For Commuting? (9 Must-Know Facts)
3- Lack Of Consistent Braking
It is widely known that people who ride commuter bikes only want to have some fun, which means that they often don’t have the skills of a specialist. The BMX bike can be either brakeless or might only have rear brakes. The downside is that the brakes tend to be weak, which would make the journey uncomfortable.
The commuter bike has plenty of space to add numerous brakes depending on your needs. These brakes tend to offer the optimal level of stopping power and should keep you safe when traveling at higher speeds.
4- BMX Bikes Don’t Have Any Gears
One could argue that some of the top commuter bikes are also single-speed. However, the single-speed ratio is much bigger, and each rotation of the pedals could push you forward up to 77-inches. When it comes to the BMX bike, each pedal rotation would only give you around 55-inches.
Yes, you can make these adjustments, but having to make constant adjustments would be frustrating for almost any rider. You might also find a few commuter bikes with a solid drivetrain, and this would make it much easier to pedal the bike and reduce the cadence to something you find more comfortable.
5- Sizing And Balance
The people who often ride BMX bikes are smaller in stature and have mastered the skill of balance on the bike. Most larger individuals rely on the bike to provide them with balance and maintain their posture on the bike. BMX bikes are often small, with some of the biggest only having 20-inch wheels.
The wheel size is fine, and you could find commuter bikes with the same wheel size. However, numerous top commuter bikes would give you up to 27.5-inch wheels. This would provide you with additional clearance and make it much easier for the rider to find a comfortable position.
We should also mention the importance of balance. If you do not have a natural level of balance, you could tilt to one side or the other. By tilting, you will throw the bike off balance, which often hampers the performance of the bike.
6- Commuter Bikes And BMX Bikes Have Similar Prices
If you love performing with your BMX bike, it would make sense for you to buy one and use it for the occasional commuting journey. However, those looking for a commuter bike and riders that want to enjoy the benefits of longer rides might not find the value of having a BMX bike. These bikes are primarily designed for stunts and tricks.
When looking at the prices, I have noticed that even the most expensive commuter bikes are not that expensive. When we compare it to something like the best road bikes or mountain bikes, you would notice the steep drop in prices.
Instead of buying a BMX bike and forcing the bike to do longer trips, it might be better to consider the commuter bike, and you might even save a few bucks.
The ultimate question you need to ask yourself is if you could put a price on comfort when commuting with your bike.
Best Bikes For Long Rides
Now that you have seen a couple of reasons why the BMX bike would be challenging for longer rides, I think many of you should be wondering which bikes would ultimately work best for these longer rides.
Having tested almost every form of the bike, we could go through the remaining bike disciplines to find out if one of them would work for you:
1- Mountain Bikes
The mountain bike is arguably the most popular bike on the market today, and it is designed to allow the rider to take on numerous terrains, which include off-roading. The mountain bike is one of the best options for cruising off-road and should make it possible for the rider to have some fun and some versatility.
The only downside to the mountain bike is that it might not offer you the same speed when riding on the road. The wheels are heavier and knobby tires which would cause plenty of friction, which tends to slow the bike down.
If you are looking for an affordable mountain bike, I suggest you check Amazon. Here’s a link.
2- Road Bikes
If speed is your main goal, you would want to have a look at the road bike. The obvious downside is that the narrow wheels might lack some durability, making it much harder to ride the bike on dirt roads. However, the aerodynamic design would enable the rider to carry plenty of speed on the tarmac surface.
Bear in mind that the seats are not made to provide comfort, and many road bikes can be very uncomfortable for the rider when doing longer rides. You might need to make a few adjustments to the seats.
3- Cruiser Bikes
The cruiser bike is similar to the commuter bike but is often far more expensive. These bikes tend to have plenty of carbon fiber components and work for both tarmac and off-road terrains.
If you prefer doing hundreds of miles over a few days, you might want to consider the cruiser bike as the best option.
4- Commuter Bikes
The commuter bike is our main reference point, and it is the ultimate bike for long distances. The commuter bike is simplistic in design and allows the rider to ride long rides comfortably.
Numerous accessories can be mounted to these bikes, enabling you to carry additional gear when needed.
Whilst BMX bikes are very popular, especially among the youth, they tend to work best when doing shorter rides. These bikes are made for performing stunts and tricks, which could often allow the rider to have fun.
However, BMX bikes lack some of the basic features to provide you with comfort. Let us know in the comment section if you prefer the BMX bike for longer rides.
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