|Less rugged than a mountain bike and more
comfortable than a road bike, hybrids combine
durability and comfort. A hybrid bike is
an excellent selection for pleasure, fitness
and/or commutes under ten miles.
Hybrid bike frames come with a low "standover"
height, which make them easier to mount and
dismount than other bikes. A long wheelbase
makes for a stable, smooth ride. The medium-width
tires, which are knobbier than a road bike
and less knobby than a mountain bike, allow
you to ride on the road, canal paths, or
light off-road bike trails.
Hybrid bike handlebars are straight or longhorn-type.
This can be more comfortable for some riders
that find the hunched-over position of drop
handlebars uncomfortable since that leaned-over
position puts more strain on the back and
neck than an upright position. However, hybrid
bike handlebars do not offer the multiple
hand positions that the drop handlebars offer,
and they shift more weight to the bicycle
seat, which can be uncomfortable on longer
Hybrid frames are made of high-tensile steel,
chromoloy steel, aluminum, or composites.
Hi-tensile steel is strong and affordable
but is heavier than other materials and rusts
if scratched. Chromoly steel is affordable
and lightweight but will rust and is more
expensive than the high-tensile steel. Aluminum
is light, durable, affordable, and corrosion
resistant but more expensive than high-tensile
steel. Other materials, such as carbon fiber
or composites, are light, durable, and corrosion
resistant but are the most expensive frame-material
choice. If you ride the bike as recommended,
any of the frame materials should serve you
Most hybrids are sold with a
rigid front fork and seat post,
now come with suspension stems
vibrations. If a comfortable
ride is especially
important to you, look for a
a suspension system.
Hybrid bikes come with a variety
choices. If your rides will be
flat areas, a bike with seven
or eight gears
will be sufficient. If you will
in hilly areas, or if you plan
to pull a
trailer, you may want 24 or 27
Because hybrids are very popular and competitively
priced, manufacturers cut corners on some
equipment. Equipment that may have to be
upgraded are tires, seats, and/or pedals.