What is a Hybrid bicycle?

I see them in the bicycle shops and hear people talk about them but honestly I don’t really understand what a hybrid bicycle is, why it’s different than the other types and who makes them.  I figured I better do a blog post on them because I know I’m not the only one wondering this, so I did some research.

First, we’ll start with the WHAT:

A hybrid bicycle is one that blends the best characteristics of both road and mountain bikes into a sturdy, comfortable and fast bike that’s ideal for streets and bike paths.

Second, we have the WHY:

A hybrid bicycle features from a mountain bike, such as:

  • a more upright frame for a more comfortable riding position
  • a stouter frame that can handle more weight and absorb the everyday punishment your riding may encounter
  • slightly wider tires for better traction and stability

A hybrid bicycle also has features from a road bike, such as:

  • lighter rims for faster riding
  • lighter components and taller gearing for going faster

 The wheels on a hybrid bicycle are a true combination of what you would find on road and mountain bikes.  They can handle a higher air pressure level, which allows them to go faster by reducing rolling resistance.  The rims and spokes are lighter like a road bike.

The frame is made of lightweight aluminum or steel for strenght and durability.

The handlebars are usually flat like a mountain bike and have a wider grip allowing the rider to sit upright for better vision and control.

Hybrid bicycles have a wide range of gearing, which allows riders to climb hills as well as go fast on flats and downhills, more similar to a road bike.  Typically the crank assembly will allow for anywhere from 16 to 27 possible gear combinations, which will account for nearly ever need a rider will have in town or on the bike path.

Hybrids come equipped with platform pedals for riders who put their feet down frequently.

Finally, we get to the WHO:

The major brands for hybrid bicycles are Cannondale, Specialized and Trek.  I’ve seen them in places like Dick’s Sporting Goods as well by Diamond Back, which is a less expensive brand.

Need to figure out which frame size you should buy, go to:  http://bicycling.about.com/od/howtoride/a/bike_sizing.htm

Ride, live, have fun.  Cindy 🙂

One response to this post.

  1. Differentiating hybrid vs road bike may be important in deciding what kind of bike to buy. However, prior to this requirement is determining the purpose of your ride. If you are into real ports where speed and performance matter, a road bike is the better choice. But if you want a casual or pleasure ride with just the right amount of speed, you should go for a hybrid bike.


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