Are BMX Bikes Good For Cruising?

If you’re a cyclist who enjoys cruising, you may wonder if a BMX bike is a suitable choice. There’s no doubt that BMX bikes are a lot of fun. They’re perfect for stunts and tricks, but can they also be used for cruising around town?

No! Absolutely not! BMX bikes are designed for tricks and stunts. So they’re not necessarily the best choice for everyday use. In addition, some specialized features on BMX bikes may not be necessary for cruising – like pegs and a tricked-out frame.

In this post, I’ll explain whether you can use a BMX for cruising and, if you want to do it anyway, what are the pros and cons of using one. Then, we will see if it’s the right choice for you.

How Do BMX Bikes Differ from Cruiser Bikes?

Bicycles come in many different styles, each designed for a specific type of riding. BMX and cruiser bikes are two popular choices, but they are built for different riding styles.

Although the two styles have a lot in common and are frequently mistaken for each other, they have several differences.

Size And Weight

BMX bikes are smaller and lighter in size than cruiser bikes. That makes them easier to maneuver and is designed for off-road riding. Cruiser bikes are more prominent and heavier, providing more stability but more challenging to control for a new rider.

Related resource: super light BMX bikes

Frame And Wheel

Cruiser bikes have a longer wheelbase and bigger wheels, making them more stable. Smaller wheels and a shorter wheelbase distinguish BMX from cruiser bikes, making them more maneuverable. They also come with features that include a strong frame, wide tires, and powerful brakes. 

Riding Style

BMX bikes are designed for tricks and racing, while cruiser bikes are designed for comfort and casual riding. Cruisers are best for riding on paved surfaces.

They are larger and heavier than BMX bikes and have comfortable seats, easy-to-use gears, and coaster brakes. In addition, they usually have a more upright riding position, while BMX bikes tend to have a more aggressive, leaned-forward position.

Protective Components

Cruisers have fenders and a chain guard, which protect the rider from getting filthy or caught in the chain. However, BMXs do not include any of these features, as they are more wide open and lack extra protective components.

Seat Position And Bottom Bracket

While BMX bikes are lower to the ground than cruisers, they have a higher bottom bracket, making pedaling for lengthy periods of time more difficult. In addition, some BMX bicycles have such low seats that you can’t even ride them while sitting. 

Gear Ratio

Another difference is that BMX bikes have only one gear. This makes them better for tricks and stunts. While cruiser bikes usually come with multiple gears, it is better for long-distance riding.

Drawbacks of Using A BMX Bike for Cruising

When it comes to BMX bikes, there are a few potential drawbacks that riders should be aware of.

Difficult to Ride

BMX can be difficult to ride if you’re not used to them. Its small wheels and no suspension make for a bumpy ride. It can be hard to stay balanced when the ground is rough. They are also not particularly comfortable and can be difficult to control at high speeds. This can lead to accidents in unique circumstances.

I had a terrible day on my BMX a few years ago. I was racing at top speed with my buddy and came upon a speed break and fell down badly. Couldn’t walk for a time because of the injury. This can happen to you if you aren’t cautious.

Not Comfortable

BMX bikes are not comfortable for long rides because they are not designed for comfort. These bikes are designed for tricks and racing, not for speed like road bikes. They are made to be durable and strong. If you want an enjoyable one for long rides, you should get a mountain or a road bike.

Expensive Than Cruiser Bike

BMX bikes are expensive, and that’s a fact. They can cost up to $1,000, not including the cost of accessories and safety gear. So, if you’re looking to get into BMX racing or even want a bike to ride around, you must be prepared to spend some serious cash.

There are a few things that make them so expensive. They’re built for racing and serious stunt. So, they need to be lightweight and durable. This means these are usually made from high-end materials like titanium or carbon fiber.

BMX is often equipped with premium components, like suspension systems and disc brakes. And, because they’re not mass-produced, there’s a limited supply, which drives up the price.

You can expect to pay anywhere from $200 to $2,000 for a decent BMX bike. Of course, the price will vary depending on the bike’s quality and the features it offers. If you want a top-of-the-line BMX bike, you can expect to pay around $3,000. However, most people will be perfectly happy with a mid-range bike that costs between $500 and $1,000.

Unstable

Smaller wheels and higher handlebars can be a problem for those new to BMX bicycle riding. They are not as stable as other bikes. It can be a problem for beginners, who may find themselves wobbling and falling off more easily than they would on a mountain or road bike. 

BMX doesn’t have a frame that goes all the way around the wheels. This makes them more difficult to control and more likely to crash at high speeds. Additionally, BMX typically doesn’t have shocks, which can also make them less stable than other bikes.

Availability

BMX is not as widely available as other bikes, but they can be found if you know where to look. There are usually found in stores that focus on selling BMX bikes and gear for people who are interested in this type of cycling. You can also find them online, but do your research before buying one.

Also, BMX bikes come in various sizes, so it’s important to know what size you need before making a purchase.

Can You Modify Your BMX for Cruising?

Most BMX bikes are designed for racing and performing tricks and, as such, are not really set up for long-distance riding. However, with a few simple modifications, you can turn your BMX into a comfortable long-distance ride.

Change The Seat

One of the main issues you’ll have with a standard BMX is the seat. Most BMX seats are extremely hard and uncomfortable, so you’ll want to swap out for a more comfortable option. A padded seat or a gel seat cover are both excellent choices. Also, you need to add a taller seat post.

Change The Handlebars

Another issue you may have with a standard BMX is the handlebars. BMX handlebars are often quite low, which can put a strain on your back and shoulders. You may want to look into getting some taller ones, or even handlebar extensions, to help you ride more comfortably. Also, choose something that is a bit more upright, as this will help with your posture and prevent fatigue.

Tires And Wheel

Most BMX bikes come with tires that are 20 inches in diameter. However, for longer rides, you’ll want to switch to 24- or 26-inches diameter tires. So, you will need to change the wheel rim of your bike. This will give you a much smoother ride and make pedaling easier.

You’ll also want to switch to a tire with a lower profile. A lower-profile one will have less rolling resistance, which means you’ll be able to go faster with less effort. Soft tires will make for a more comfortable ride, but you don’t want them so soft that they’re likely to get punctured.

Always make sure your tires are properly inflated. Under-inflated ones will make pedaling harder and can cause flats. And the over-inflated tires will make the ride less comfortable and can cause a burst. 

Tune The Brakes

Some experienced riders remove brakes from their BMX, and sometimes they don’t come with one. So if you are thinking of modifying your bike for a longer ride tune, add a good quality brake to your bike for better safety measures.

You’ll need to ensure that your brakes are up to the task. Luckily, it’s not too difficult to modify your brakes to be better suited for longer rides.

There are many ways to modify your bike brakes for longer-distance riding. For example, you can change the brake pads, use a different type of brake fluid, or even install an aftermarket braking system. 

Install Good Brake Pads

One of the most significant issues you’ll face with long-distance BMX riding is brake fade. This is when your brakes start to lose effectiveness after being used for a while. To prevent this, you’ll need to upgrade your brake pads. There are two main types of brake pads that you can use for your BMX bike – Organic and Metallic.

Organic brake pads are made from materials like Kevlar or Rubber and are designed to be softer and more comfortable. However, they wear out more quickly than metallic brake pads.

Metallic brake pads are made from steel-type materials and last longer, but they can be harsh on your rims. You’ll also need to ensure that your brake cables are in good condition.

Replace Brake Cable

Brake cables are made from steel and can rust over time, which can cause them to break. Inspect your brake cables regularly and replace them if they show any signs of wear. You’ll also need to adjust the tension on your brakes.

This is because the tension on BMX brakes is usually set for tricks and short stops, not for long-distance riding. To adjust it, turn the barrel adjuster on your brake lever clockwise.

Are There Any Benefits of Riding A BMX Bike for Cruising?

The numerous advantages of riding a BMX bike are as follows:

Good for Stunt And Racing

BMX bikes are great for tricks and stunt riding. If you like to ride your bicycle in an adventurous way, then it is perfect for you. They are designed for doing maneuvers and stunts, so they are much more durable than other types of bicycles.

In addition, a BMX bike is an excellent option if you enjoy competitive cycling. These are designed for speed and agility, making them perfect for racing.

Easy to Transport

They’re much smaller than other types of bicycles, which makes them ideal and easy to transport and store. If you need to take your bike with you on the go, then a BMX bike is a great option.

Unique Riding Experience

A BMX bike is an excellent choice if you want to try something new on two wheels. They offer a different riding experience than other types of bicycles, making them a perfect option for riders who want something different.

Good for Relieving Stress

BMX biking is a full-body workout. You’re using your arms and legs to pedal and your core to keep yourself balanced. This exercise is excellent for building muscle and improving cardiovascular health. 

Riding a BMX bike can also be a great way to relieve stress. Being out in the fresh air and getting some exercise can help clear your mind and improve your mood.

Tips for Riding Your BMX Bike Safely and Enjoyably

Whether you are a beginner or have been riding your BMX bike for years, there are always ways to improve your safety and enjoyment while riding. Here are a few tips to get you started: 

Always Wear A Helmet

This cannot be stressed enough. A fall can happen anytime, and a helmet will help protect your head from serious injury. 

Wear Body Protective Gears

Elbow and knee pads can help protect you from scrapes and bruises.

Check Your Bike Before Ride

Make sure your bike is in good working condition. Before you ride, check your tires, brakes, and chain to ensure everything is in proper working order.

Ride in Good Weather

Avoid riding in bad weather conditions, such as high winds or heavy rain.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Pay attention to what’s happening around you, be prepared to avoid obstacles, and plan your route accordingly. 

Are BMX Bikes Suitable for Older Adults Looking for a Comfortable Ride?

Are BMX bikes the best bicycle for 50 year old man looking for a comfortable ride? While BMX bikes are designed for stunts and tricks, they typically have smaller frames and less cushioning, making them less suitable for older adults. Comfort bikes or hybrid bikes with larger frames and more cushioning may be more comfortable options.

Conclusion

BMX bikes are not meant to ride long distances and do not offer as much comfort as cruiser bikes. However, there are some benefits to using a BMX bike, such as the fact that they are lighter and easier to maneuver.

If you are looking for a bike that is good for both cruising around town and doing tricks in the park, then a modified BMX bike is the best option. With some modifications, like adding a larger seat or changing the tires and handlebars, you can turn your BMX bike into a more versatile mode of transportation.

References:

  • https://www.unco.edu/campus-recreation/outdoor-pursuits/bike-program.aspx

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