How To Choose The Size Of A Mountain Bike?

How To Choose The Size Of A Mountain Bike

Many people are scared of riding a mountain bike because they think it is not easy to ride. But this is not the case. Riding a mountain bike is very easy, and the ride is even more enjoyable and exciting if you have a perfect sized mountain bike. If your mountain bike does not fit your size, this might create a few problems, and your riding experience would be the most uncomfortable one. 

For getting the best riding experience, people want to know how to choose the size of a mountain bike? 

How To Choose The Size Of A Mountain Bike

How are mountain bikes sized?

Some indicators tell us what size of mountain bike is suitable for you? 

  • Top tube length
  • Reach
  • Stand over height
  • Seat height

Frame sizes measure most bikes, but nowadays, the shapes are different and unique, so it seems difficult or sometimes impossible to measure the size from the frame. Another technique of measuring the bike is to stand flat-footed while remain seated In the bike. But it is not the most accurate thing, so you should go to the manufacturer’s recommendation if you are going to buy a mountain bike.

Frame categories:

The manufacturers have made a frame size chart for people to know their accurate frame six for the mountain bike. Some charts have five, but some have six categories. Mountain bikes are sized into extra small, small, medium, large, extra-large. These sizes are ideal, and people usually buy these. In most bikes, only frame sizes change; other components like wheel size and suspension remain the same in a particular company’s mountain bikes. 

Between sizes :

People usually buy the basic size of mountain bikes from the size chart, but the problem occurs when a rider is between sizes. Then the rider needs to understand his riding style. Because other them height the size of mountain bike depends upon the riding style.  The rider needs to confirm that he needs a size up mountain bike or size down mountain bike. The rider should get to know his comfort because riding a mountain bike is a pleasant experience, but if you feel distressing, there is something wrong with your mountain bike. 

Size chart

Bike sizeFrame sizeRiders height
Extra-small13 inches – 14 inches152 cm – 162 cm ( 5 ft – 5 ft 2 in )
Small14 inches – 16 inches162 cm – 170 cm ( 5 ft 4 in – 5 ft 7 in )
Medium16 inches – 18 inches170 cm – 178 cm ( 5 ft 7 in – 5 ft 10 in )
Large18 inches – 20 inches178 cm – 185 cm (5 ft 10 in – 6 ft 1 in )
Extra large20 inches – 22 inches185 cm plus ( 6ft 1 in plus )

Some mountain bike stores have a separate chart for women. The sizes are slightly different, but it doesn’t matter; you can always try unisex mountain bikes. 

How To Choose The Size Of A Mountain Bike

How to measure:

The perfect way to measure the frame of a mountain bike is to know its components accurately. You should know of its seat, tube, brackets, etc. After knowing them to take a measuring tape and measure the distance between the top of the seat tube and the bottom brackets’ centre. Note the measurements on the notebook both in inches and centimetres. Now measure the height of the bike rider in both inches and centimetres. Go through the size chart and select the perfect size of the mountain bike according to the rider’s height.


What size mountain bike should I buy for my height?

You should check the size chart given by the manufacturers of mountain bikes. These size charts show the size of the bike according to your height. If your height is 159 cm to 168 cm, you should buy a mountain bike of 15 inches – 16 inches. The easiest way is to measure your height and note it down. Go through the size chart and select the bike that goes with your height. 

Should I size up or down for a mountain bike?

You should buy the exact size of the mountain bike, but if you are between sizes, that would be a problem for you. So then, the accurate size of a mountain bike for you will depend upon your riding style. If you want quick and sharp turns and smooth landing, you should go for a size down of a mountain bike, but you should go for a size up mountain bike if you want high speed with more stability. 

Should your feet touch the ground on the mountain bike?

Yes, your feet should touch the ground when you are sitting on a mountain bike. This is the most obvious thing to determine that you have a perfect-sized mountain bike. The height of the saddle is essential for a stable and smooth ride with a comfortable position. When you are sitting on the seat, both of your feet should touch the ground, and your feet’ heels should be resting straight on the ground.

Do wheel size matter on the mountain bike?

Wheel size does matter on the mountain bike. The riders riding style is greatly affected by the wheel size. The bigger size of a wheel is for uphill riding or riding on the straight line, while the smaller wheels have more suspension travel. Both have their particular pros and cons; it just depends upon the rider what he wants.

How do you know if the bike is too big for me?

Many visible symptoms can tell you that the mountain bike is too big for you.
If the mountain bike feels too heavy
If the handlebars are too away from you
If your feet do not touch the ground.

The accurate size of a mountain bike is very important; the wrong-sized mountain bike can never give you the best riding experience; the sharp turns and hurdles of the trail can never be upheld by a wrong-sized mountain bike. By knowing about mountain bikes, you’ll know how to choose the size of a mountain bike.

Johan Oakley

Hi, I am John Oakley- The Guy behind this site. I am an avid hiker and love to try new mountain bikes. I love to experiment with new gear for biking and cycling and this site is a result of my passion for reviewing and checking the best mountain bikes and accessories.

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