Best Beginner Mountain Bikes

Beginner Mountain Bikes - Reviews & Guides For 2020

Our Top Beginner Mountain Bikes

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Beginner Mountain Bike Buyers Guide

Are you looking for a beginner mountain bike? Then you will undoubtedly find this guide to be highly informative. What makes mountain bikes such an excellent choice for beginners? How can you buy the best mountain bike in your budget? If you have these questions and other similar questions, then this guide will help you out.

More importantly, you will learn about all the essential factors. Don't you worry! We won't dive into the technical fluff that would intimidate you. This article aims to be simple and easy to understand for anyone to make the right choice regarding mountain bikes.

Whether you seek to use it occasionally, daily commute, or for vocational activities, read ahead! Because as you will read, all of your confusion will get a proper solution. You will have clarity by the end of the article regarding the type of beginner mountain bike you want!

What is a beginner mountain bike? How is it different from other MTBs?

A mountain bike is a performance-oriented counterpart of standard road bikes.

Road bikes are great for pavement roads, speed, and long-distance travel. A mountain bike brings you all of these options for other trails. You may say that a mountain bike is more of a well-versed and 'all-terrain' type of bike.

However, due to its heavier frame and wider tires, it lacks speed compared to a road bike. Regardless, it brings a lot to the table with better performance, durability, and ease of maintenance. Often, these bikes are the best user-friendly bike.

A road bike is great for city streets and roads. In contrast, a mountain bike brings you an option to roll down any rudder off-road path to enjoy a blissful ride! Let's learn more about what makes mountain bikes so enticing!

Reasons to get a beginner mountain bike

It's exciting to own a mountain bike. You get a user-friendly bike that is easy to maintain. It is highly durable and can work for years to come. In general, a mountain bike is a safer investment if you don't want to buy a new bike every couple of years. Let's look into some other reasons to get a mountain bike.

Commute faster

If you live in a city or have a busy road, you will most likely get stuck in the traffic. Now, most of the vehicles and bikes are not built for off-roading. However, you can detour from those trails with a mountain bike that doesn't have cement or pavement.

You can take 'that' short cut to reach your destination faster.

Explore the world

If you want to go on road trips or picnics with your friends, a bike would be a fantastic choice. You can explore the woods or a mountain without getting on foot. Thus, it will save you time, and you will have more fun exploring the world.

More importantly, you will be more efficient and cover the distance better. Mountain bikes are great to get you anywhere. Whether you want to socialize with people or travel a distance, it is a versatile choice.

Polish your skills

Whether you seek to enhance your speed or control over the bike, a mountain bike is excellent. Are you more of a stuntman type? Then to survive all of those nasty falls and crashes, you certainly need a strong cycle. That's where a mountain bike would be a perfect choice.

A heady-duty choice

Yes, a mountain bike is one of the most durable bikes available in the market. A road bike is most likely to break if you crash often or if it falls. As mountain bikes are lighter, they are easier to carry and steal. However, you can prevent all the trouble by getting a mountain bike.

Now for a beginner mountain bike is a boon. If you want to give some kid a bike, it would be better to provide them with a mountain bike.

Fun of customization

Your mountain bike will support almost any type of update due to its robust construction. Therefore, you have the freedom to customize it. As mountain bikes are globally used, you get options to make changes and tweaks in tires, wheels, brakes, paddles, chain, gear, speed system, and much more.

Overall, if you want your bike to be 'your style' and 'define' you, you need a mountain bike.

Lead a healthier lifestyle

A mountain bike is significantly more comfortable to ride than any other bikes. It is the best choice for kids to the elderly if you want to maintain a certain fitness level. It will get you working and provide a full-body workout if you know how to use it.

Thus, you can get better sleep, relieve stress, and enjoy one of the most natural ways to travel by biking around.

Factors to consider when buying a mountain bike

Here is a list of factors that you should check when buying a mountain bike for beginners. A bike for beginners is different from other MTBs, and is easy to ride.

Check the below-mentioned factors to buy the best mountain bike.

Consider your budget

The first thing you need to consider the budget. Mountain bikes can be an expensive investment if you don't know what you're getting yourself into. Even if you go for a beginner mountain bike, there are different categories.

More importantly, stick to the budget you originally planned. As a general rule, try to get a bike under 70-80% of what you initially plan on spending. That way, you will most likely find a bike that falls under your budget.

Don't fall for the design.

If you go to a bike showroom or workshop, they will most likely try to attract you with the bike's design. Some will say it has a better color theme, the looks are great. However, looks should be the last thing in your mind when choosing a mountain bike. It is a performance-oriented bike, so consider those factors first.

Forget about technicalities

The next thing you will see is a lot of technicality and people talking about aerodynamics. Some will tell you that it has better acceleration, paddling is more effortless, and so on. Forget about these points. Those are factors for professionals. As a beginner, your focus should be on choosing the right type of a beginner mountain bike.

Understand your requirements

Once you are hard set on the budget, you can move to consider the bike's purpose. How often do you plan on using it? Is it for everyday use or casual rides on weekends?

What's your trail?

The trail is the kind of road you will ride the bike on. Your route is important because it will directly affect the type of mountain bike you should get. If you have a pavement road, a mountain bike is not the best choice. However, if you have muddy or uneven roads with rocks and stones, mountain trails, and other off-roading requirements, then a mountain bike would be a perfect addition.

How do you ride?

The way you ride matters. Some love to feel each obstacle they encounter, while others love a comfortable ride without much disturbance. Are you a speed rider? Perhaps you are more into performing tricks? Yes, each of these factors would matter and help you understand the type of bike you require.

Different types of mountain bikes

The primary reason why we asked you to consider the budget and the requirements to help you choose the perfect kind of beginner mountain bike. For a professional, there are countless options and styles. However, as a beginner, there are four fundamental mountain bikes available in the market:

Cross country

If you're looking for a road-bike counterpart in a mountain bike, then this is the best you can do. A cross country mountain bike is the fastest mountain bikes. It offers better paddling and higher acceleration. In many aspects, it is similar to a road bike, but for more rugged roads.

If you love speed and usually need to overcome tall ascends, climb the mountains, and love racing, then a cross country is best. It is among the lightest models in beginner mountain bikes, as well. In other words, if you want to cover a longer distance faster with a mountain bike, this is the one.

Trail

Do you seek to enjoy your bike riding? If you're looking to have an all-rounder mountain bike with balanced performance in every sector, a trail bike is perfect. It is what most people nowadays know as a mountain bike. Yes, it is the mountain bike you use for off-roading and to ride on the paved roads.

These are suitable for different terrains from muddy to sandy and rocky. Overall, if you're looking for an authentic or 'original' mountain bike, this is the way to go.

All mountain

Think of these as a twin of trail mountain bikes, but for mountains specifically. What does it mean? A trail mountain bike is more of an all-terrain type that you can use around any road. However, mountain roads have elevated pathways. You will come across roads that require climbing or descending.

Often, you require a bike with a better grip that would allow you to stride up the slope and provide control while rolling down the hill. If you plan on going for the original 'mountain bike riding' activity and cover classic trails, you will need this bike.

Downhill

These are not the best choice for a beginner mountain bike and tend to be for those who are just looking for the thrill of 'descent.' In other words, once you climb the highest slope, you can roll down with better control on the bike.

A downhill bike can be dangerous, but it makes descent easier. These are more suitable for a specific sport, including stunts. These are not made for climbing or covering a long distance, nor are these great for anything else a standard bike mountain would be suitable for.

Downhill bike is more of a 'stuntman' bike.

The big three

Now here are the three crucial factors that you have to consider while selecting a bike. These will impact the life and overall performance of your bike. It will affect your well-being, as well. The big three are paramount to ensure that you get a robust bike

Frame

Mountain bikes generally have a heavy frame. It is to ensure durability while handling offroading tasks. However, modern mountain bikes are available in steel, aluminum, carbon, titanium, and alloy frames. Out of these, aluminum is the commonly used frame because it is highly affordable and lightweight. Alloys come second to aluminum in availability with apt flexibility.

Steel is a solid frame but makes the bike heavier. Titanium is a premium-grade and robust frame that is usually found in high-end bikes. Carbon frames can vary in integrity. Most of these are for high-end, tend to be very lightweight with optimum durability. To understand whether it is excellent for you or not, an aluminum frame would be best for a beginner mountain bike.

Suspension

Apart from the frame, how well can your bike cushion impact you would depend on the suspension. There are full suspension, front suspension, and no-suspension options available for a mountain bike. Comparatively, you shouldn't aim for full suspension for a mountain bike unless you're looking for optimum comfort. The full-suspension system doesn't go well with a mountain bike. However, for a beginner, it could be the right choice.

Front-suspension is pivotal to maintain the integrity of the bike and deliver a comfortable ride. It is the best option because it doesn't impact the mountain bike's primary objective while also making a ride comfortable for you. No suspension mountain bikes are not suitable for beginners. They are for more hardcore riders.

Handle

There are different types of handle models and designs that you can get. A handle will decide your riding position, and you can't help it. Mountain bikes are compatible with handle change, but the best option is to go for a flat handlebar. A curved handlebar is more for speed bikes and worse for control; you will inevitably encounter some falls.

Any other handle bike won't be as comfortable as a flat handle. A flat handlebar makes the ride comfortable with an upright position, and you can bike for longer times. Most of the time, it offers different handling positions comfortably. Thus, you can control your bike to the best of your capabilities.

The optional components

As we've mentioned above, you don't need to get into the technicalities. However, there are some factors people think are essential. It's true that these factors matter, but not for a beginner mountain bike. These are more for consideration once you start enjoying mountain biking.

Still, here are some specifications that may or may not matter to you.

Tire specifications

The size of a tire in your bike matters for better clearance, easier acceleration, and speed maintenance. It starts with the quality of the tire, especially the rubber. The type of rubber directly affects the terrain, and the tread of your tire affects the grip.

If we talk about size, then large tires are better for off-roading, while smaller tires are great for standard roads. So, if you plan on using mountain bikes for a daily commute, go for a smaller size (Around 27.5 inches). However, if you have mostly off-road trails, then get a bigger tire.

Don't get tires that are too wide or big because that is just asking to input more physical efforts that will lead to minimum results. If you don't want to invest in tires, then get the standard ones. They deliver balanced performance.

Gear system

Also known as 'speed' settings, a gear system allows you to shift your bike's chain to offer different speeds and meet paddling requirements. While it is excellent for better control, performance training, or general exercise, the gear system is not vital.

If you want to save some bucks and not get a gear system, then go for it. Most mountain bikes are better off with a one-speed setting because of the sudden changes in the terrain, ascends, and descents. In these cases, as a beginner, you might not manage to shift the speed dial adequately and result in accidents.

Thus, for a beginner mountain bike, this is not a necessity. Once you grow some skills and understanding of the mountain bike and trails, you may reconsider it.

Brakes

Once again, if you're not a performance-oriented person, then brakes wouldn't matter either. There are two types of brakes available for mountain bikes. You can get the standard rim brakes that are easy to replace and economical. These are the best choice for beginners but don't offer much control or performance. They work like any standard braking system.

Disc brakes (mechanical and hydraulic) are also available for mountain bikes. However, these are heavier and for people that want performance. If you're not into the sport of mountain biking, there's genuinely no requirement for you to invest in these. Disc brakes are more costly, as well.

Think about the future

When you invest in a mountain bike, you're investing in the future. Mainly because a mountain bike is a long-lasting choice. However, its maintenance and upkeep should undergo a vital consideration. That's generally a breeze.

The more important aspect is to look for replacement and upgrades. You won't always stay a beginner. Thus, you need a bike that you can change as you improve. Mountain bikes are generally suitable for it. However, to double-sure, get a futureproof bike.

There are investments that you'll have to make inevitably to upkeep your bike. You will come across more innovations, better components, and such. Ensure that your bike is compatible enough for you to get this done in the future.

Proper size matters

Regardless of the bike type, you need to have a proper size. According to your height and body proportions, the bike should fit you well. Now, you can get an expert's help for it as they are available in the workshops.

A proper bike size would lead you to have better control and eliminate any chance of discomfort.

Always test your bike

Final and the best tip for a beginner mountain bike is that you should certainly take it out on a ride. Always test-ride your bike to see if it is the right one. Riding on a cycle can tell you a lot about it, from your style to the way it feels. Sometimes, a bike feels like riding from a test drive.

Dealers sometimes confuse people by saying they need specific components or additions. You can see if you genuinely need it by taking your bike for a spin.

FAQs: Best Beginner Mountain Bike

Q: How much does a mountain bike cost?

A: The cost of the mountain bike depends primarily on its frame type. Then the components such as disc brakes and suspension systems will make a significant impact. After that, if you decide to go for different tires, that would increase the cost further. Overall, a mountain bike can cost as much as other bikes or very heavily into thousands of bucks.

Q: Is mountain bike good for pavement roads?

A: Mountain bikes can deliver you commute options and cover the pavement road. However, road bikes are more suitable for pavement roads. A mountain bike would decline in performance, especially on extended pavement trails. Meanwhile, if you want mountain and road bike options in a single cycle, you can opt for a hybrid bike.

Q: What are the tools you should have for a mountain bike?

A: An air pump is an indispensable requirement you should always have at home. A portable air pump would be great if you're going on a trip. A compact multiple-tool set to maintain your bikes, such as tightening its suspension system and brakes, would also be handy. You don't need to invest too much in the tools. However, you may have to invest in a helmet and other essential gear.

Conclusion

This is a beginner mountain bike buyers guide. Therefore, we didn't provide the in-depth knowledge that a seasoned rider requires. However, we did make sure to help you get most of the vital information that every rider should know, rookie or veteran. We hope that our tips and how you can impact the cost would also help you in future endeavors.

Remember that a mountain bike is a steady investment, and you should buy it only if you can spare some bucks for its maintenance. It is perfect for fun, recreational activities that bike riding offers. So, grab a beginner mountain bike, and ride the streets with your friends!

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