How to Choose Mountain Bike

Mountain bikes come in various sizes and with a different type of specifications. If you are new in this field, choosing one can be daunting. There are several things to consider when buying one.

Choosing the right mountain bike is vital for your riding. The best one will give you maximum enjoyment on your excursions. However, finding the right product in a crowded field can be difficult.

You do not have to worry anymore because this is an ultimate guide that provides the solution for selecting a mountain bike. We will help you choose the one that fits your budget while matching your riding style.

Read the article for more information.

Types of mountain bike

Before choosing the mountain bike, it is ideal to know the different types of these machines. They are:

Trail bikes

They are the most common mountain bikes you see on the road daily. The reason is their category is not grounded in any specific racing type. They are ideal for fun and weight regulation, including other outdoor activities.

Its specifications are suspension travel between 120 to 140mm, and 67 to 69⁰ head-tube angle.

If you are wondering what suspension travel is, it is the amount of movement offered by the rear and front suspension.

The head-tube angle is the angle at which the head tubes form with the ground.

A steeper angle indicates that the bike will climb better and turn faster. On the other hand, a lower one will give better stability at high speeds, but climbing is slower.

All-mountain bikes

These bikes are for riding in mountainous areas. Its features include longer scarier descents, burning climbs, large legs, and other technical specifications.

They are designed to perform best in steep descents and are easy to peddle uphill.

Its specifications are suspension travel between 140 to 170mm, and 65 to 68⁰ head-tube angle.

Fat-tire bikes

As the name says, they have larger tires than the usual ones. Their tires range from 3.7 inches to more than 5.

These fat tires give the bike excellent traction, especially when riding or training in snow or sand. It is for this reason that they lack additional travel suspension. The head tube angle is 90⁰ for small-size bikes and 130⁰ for XL models.

Cross-country bikes

They are ideal for fast riding and best for climbing, and they cover a long distance, approximately 25km/h and more. They focus on efficiency and low weight.

They are the best brands for sporting or competitions.

Its specifications are suspension travel of between 80 to 100mm, and 70 to 71⁰ head-tube angle.

Downhill-Park bikes

They are larger than other bikes and tough to ride, and they mostly move in serviced bike parks. The riders must wear full-body protective clothes such as helmets and body armor because of the terrain. Such areas include rocky surfaces and wooden ladders.

Its specifications are suspension travel between 170 to 200mm, and 63 to 65⁰ head-tube angle.

How to choose a mountain bike

how to pick a mountain bike

You are now aware of the different types of mountain bikes. Whatever is remaining now is how to choose one. Here is how to do it:


Hardtails bikes

Some bikes have front suspension and while others have rear one. A bike such as a hardtail is ideal for first-time users because of the front suspension.

Such models are fast and cheap, making them suitable for new commuters.

Full suspension bikes

They have both front and rear suspensions. Unlike the hardtails, these models are ideal for new beginners who want to venture on off-road rides.

They come with a higher price tag and are not affordable for many. On the flip side, these mountain bikes are comfortable, providing confidence for control.

Suspension travel

Both wheels have a defined amount of travel. The bike is ideal for persons who love riding down and uphill.

Sport and recreation

Some of the models are ideal for sporting. Though most are for commuting, almost all brands can do sporting activities. However, some are specifically for this purpose.

Fast-rolling bikes

They are also known as cross-country bikes. These models are best for long-distance rides and other recreational activities.

The hardtails in this category enable maximum power output during the rides. Full-suspension bikes, on the other hand, provide greater comfort and control.

Cross-country bikes have less suspension than a hardtail. They are also light and stiff but built for speed, distance, and mountain climbing.

All mountain bikes

These bikes are super-fast when going uphill and fun while riding downwards. It is one of the best choices for beginners and experienced riders.


They are the best choice for anyone who likes rough terrain riding and maneuvers through steep descents with a lot of ease.

They are superfast bikes but very stable, especially when going downhill. You can also ride them uphill with ease.


These models are for riders who love riding in extreme conditions. The rider requires a high level of adrenaline.

They are heavy, burly, and go straight down in one direction.

The wheel size

Mountain bikes come with different wheel sizes, depending on the model. The adult bikes have three-wheel sizes, 26-inch, 27.5-inch, and 29-inch wheels.

The 27.5-inch wheel is increasingly phasing out. On the other hand, the 29-inch wheel is becoming more popular.

The frame material

The main options are carbon, steel, and alloy. Carbon is light, making the bike have less weight. Alloy is cheap and more durable. It is also heavy and less comfortable to ride.

Steel is a hard metal and does not easily rust. It offers a quality ride but is much weightier.

Bike size

Measure the size of the bike before buying one. Alternatively, you can refer to the manufacturer’s website for the size chart.

Choose a bike that you are comfortable standing over its top and comfortable riding without leaning too much to the front.

Adjust the seat appropriately to configure the bike to the desired height.


Choosing a mountain bike is not an easy task. You require a lot of information about various models and the place ideal for riding. First-time users have the biggest challenge in this case.

However, you do not need to worry as this article contains all the information necessary for choosing one. You can always read it side-by-side with the user manual to get in-depth information about a particular brand. As a side effect, you will know how to choose a mountain bike.

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