- When it comes to buying a new bike,
it's absolutely paramount that you pick the right size.
There are loads of different adjustments
you can make to your bike, like the stem,
the saddle, even the seat post or the crank length.
But, every different adaptation you make to your bike
will affect the way it performs and the way it feels.
Ultimately, if you're buying a too small bike
or even a too big bike,
it's never going to feel quite right.
So in this video, we're going to help you choose
the perfect bike size for you.
(upbeat electronic music)
- Before we start, let me explain sizing.
'Cause it's not quite as simple as just
basing the bike around how tall you are.
Most manufacturers will label their bike
in sizes small, medium, or large et cetera.
But others will also label them with a number.
These generally range from 48 to 62,
and that corresponds to measurement in centimeters
from the bottom bracket, which is down here,
to the top of the top tube.
There is however, nothing consistent
about the way manufacturers measure their bikes.
Just because you've always had a 54 from one brand,
doesn't mean that a 54 from another brand will fit you.
The effective seat tube length
is just one of three really important ways
of measuring your next bike.
The other two ways of measuring your bike
are known as reach and stack,
and these are internationally regarded standards.
The reach refers to a center line from the bottom bracket
measured to the center line of the head tube.
And your stack refers to a very similar measurement,
but then includes the height of the bike as well.
It might sound slightly complicated,
but hopefully the graphic on your screen will help.
It's kind of like buying a pair of trousers.
Trousers come with a waist size,
but they also come with a leg length.
And much like buying trousers,
you will have to try on several pairs,
or ride several different bikes,
to find the perfect fit for you.
- Before we get onto that, though,
let's get one easy but fundamental point
under our belts first.
Now, that is what is our saddle height
and how can we find it?
Now, a really easy way is to find a wall like this,
get onto your bike, placing both hands on the handlebars,
place on pedal all the way down to six o'clock.
Now put your heel on the pedal.
Now you should find your leg straight.
Then when you go to clip in,
and put it back into normal position,
you find that your leg is slightly bent.
Really easy, but really effective way
of finding the right saddle height for you.
- Finding your correct saddle height
is relatively easy and that's because
you've got plenty of scope for adjustment.
When it comes to setting your reach, though,
you're much more restricted in the adjustments
that you can make, even though it's potentially
more important to your comfort on the bike.
Now, the reach of different bikes will vary
within a manufacturer, but also from brand to brand
and this depends on the type of riding
the bike is designed for,
but also the size of the bike you're riding.
Racing bikes, like the ones you'll see at the Tour de France
is generally really long and really low.
Whereas a gravel bike will be
a little bit shorter and higher.
The numbers that refer to how the bike will be
are known as stack and reach,
if you remember those from earlier.
If you're new to cycling, you're relatively more relaxed
about your riding, or you're a little bit less flexible,
you'll probably favor something that's shorter and higher.
Whereas if you're into racing,
you'll probably favor something that's longer and lower.
For example, of different types of geometry,
Canyon put their three bikes into different categories,
Pro, Pro Sport, and Sport geometry.
So how will you decide on where your bars need to go?
Well this is going to depend on a few things.
If you have long arms, a long back,
and you're very flexible, you'll probably be able
to get yourself into a longer, lower position.
If you're less flexible,
or you have a shorter back and arms,
then the opposite is of course true as well.
And then finally, the type of riding that you do
is going to play a factor as well.
Generally speaking, though, with your saddle
in the correct position, the relationship
from your shoulder to hip angle
should be 40 to 45 degrees to horizontal
underneath your wheels, with your arms then protruding
at 80 to 90 degrees down the the bars.
If you do need to adjust the height of your bars,
this is relatively quick and easy to do so
by adjusting the spaces, whipping them out
and putting them beneath to raise your bars
or vice versa to lower them.
But if you do need to adjust the reach,
this is going to be a little trickier.
You'll probably need to buy a new stem, or in my case,
you'd need to swap the entire handlebar setup.
However, if you do need to adjust your stem
by more than two or three centimeters,
you probably should have a different size frame.
And whilst you can move your saddle fore and aft
by a few centimeters, this should never be done
to affect your reach.
Your saddle should be dictated only by your legs,
so put it in the correct position,
and leave that where it is.
(upbeat electronic music)
- So, you've found the bike you absolutely love
but you're kind of in between sizes.
Maybe it's a 54 or a 56, a medium or a large.
Now, the difference between both of these bikes
is the stack and the reach.
The reach being this, and the stack being here.
If you're a larger rider,
you're going to have a larger seat post,
meaning you need the handlebars
that little bit higher, hence the stack.
But, if you want a more racier style
and more racier feeling bike,
then most riders go for a smaller bike
and adding a longer stem.
But, if you want a more stable
and more upright position on the bike,
then go for the larger bike with that higher stack.
Ultimately, you can pick a frame size
on your height and your saddle height alone.
But you really need to ascertain
what kind of frame you want.
Do you want long and low or do want upright?
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