There is a misconception that picking the right bike is easy. Many people think they simply find the bike that looks good and feels comfortable. However this is not the case, there are plenty of things you need to consider when looking for the right bike. There is more to it nowadays than there used to be. With cycling becoming more popular in almost every area of life (transportation, lifestyle, sports, hobbies) there are more bicycles than ever to choose from. Some people are choosing to cycle as a means of transportation on a regular basis. There are also plenty of families that cycle as a hobby. No matter why you are picking your bicycle, here are some ways to help you along.
It goes without saying that choosing the correctly sized bike is of utmost importance. The measurement of your inseam is needed for this. Simply measure through your inner leg from your groin to the bottom of your foot to find out your inseam. When you get a bike you should be able to lay both feet flat to the ground if need be. If you can do this you need not worry about stopping in an emergency if your brakes malfunction.
If you intend to get a road bike then take 9" away from your total inseam. This is to account for the size of tires you will use on a road bike. These tires will be thinner and designed for efficiency on concrete roads or pavements. You will want to subtract 12" for a mountain bike. Again this is to account for the type of tires you will be using. Mountain bike tires will be thick and designed for mountainous terrain. You can use mountain bikes for city cycling, but the opposite is not true and they are nowhere near as good on city streets as road bikes.
You also want to make sure you leave some room between you and the crossbar of your bike. When you choose your bike, adjust the seat up a few inches from the crossbar and then sit on the bike. Make certain you can still place both feet flatly on the ground. Different bikes will need differing clearance amounts. A good example is a touring bike, with these bikes you will only need around 1" difference. With a mountain bike however you will need some more, 3 inches should suffice.
There are many different things you should consider when the time comes to buy the perfect bicycle for yourself. There are so many different bicycles and accessories available that it can feel overwhelming as you try to decide which items are best for you. Don't become discouraged; map out what you need for your bike and you'll be you can find out more on your way in no time.