Nowadays, no one doubts that bike traveling is a healthy and efficient option since it is an economical, ecological, and optimal means of transport for health. As if this were not enough, moving by bike saves time since we avoid traffic jams in big cities, what more could you ask for from this vehicle?
But bikes are not only for enjoying the big cities. Mountain bikes (also known as Mountain Bikes or MTB) are off-road bikes. Designed for use on trails, they are ideal for traversing forests and enjoying rocky trails. Thanks to their excellent functionality, they are among the bestsellers today.
The Most Important Points About Mountain Bikes
- Within the MTB, there are different modalities. The first thing you should do if you have decided to buy a mountain bike defines the style you want to practice. Many of us like an off-road motorcycle.
- One of the biggest mistakes we make when purchasing our first MTB bike is choosing the wrong size for us. This error will make our experience unsatisfactory. If the bike is too big or too small, we won’t get the best result from our purchase.
- If it is your first mountain bike, it would be better not to look for anything too complicated or superior to the use you will give it. It is convenient to check what components it has so that it is easier for you to make the best purchase decision about the quality-price of your new mountain bike.
Our Favorite Mountain Bikes
Next, we show you the best mountain bikes that you can find on the market. In this section, you will discover which one is the most suitable for you. You can also choose the bike characteristics such as size, type of seat, brakes, frame, suspension, or components.
- The best mountain bike for beginners
- The best suspension mountain bike
- The most versatile mountain bike
- Best folding mountain bike
The best mountain bike for beginners
It is a steel mountain bike with a 26-inch frame. It is equipped with a Revo Shift rear derailleur, 6-speed friction sprocket, and 26 x 1.90 tires. The pedals are New Star made of resin. Hubs (elements where the axle rests and rotates) are made of steel with a nut and the derailleur, triple plate; it has a rigid fork and V-
The bicycle is practically assembled, except for the front wheel, saddle, handlebars, and pedals, which are loose. It is straightforward and intuitive to build since it only requires an Allen key as a tool. It is perfect for light riding, but it is not recommended for any mountain trail as it has no suspension.
The best suspension mountain bike
It is an all-terrain mountain bike with an aluminum frame, very light, which is used both for riding in the open field and on mountain trails and commuting around the city every day. Thanks to its front fork, the suspension cushions bumps and ensures a stable and controlled ride.
Built-in front and rear disc brakes, more potent than other braking systems, can withstand fatigue and offer excellent performance in adverse weather conditions, especially with water. Good grip, remarkable acceleration and maneuverability, and reliable both on long climbs and on flat terrain.
The most versatile mountain bike
It is a 26 “MTB with a SHIMANO 21V derailleur. It has disc brakes and full suspension. A versatile and all-terrain mountain bike with a Hi-Ten steel frame, robust and reliable, performs equally well in open field rides as in simple trips around the city.
It is equipped with full suspension, which allows a more comfortable and controlled ride on rougher roads. Its disc brakes handle descents well and offer excellent performance in adverse weather conditions. Besides, its rear suspension is adjustable and has aluminum wheels.
Best folding mountain bike
It is a folding mountain bike, although users who have purchased it emphasize that, given the handlebar’s size, it is difficult to insert it without folding it into the trunk of most cars. They also stand out for their excellent value for money and their agile shipping (it takes less than a week to arrive).
It’s light, has Shimano gears and disc brakes. The material from which the frame is made is aluminum, it has 21 speeds, and the wheel’s size is 26 inches. Easy to transport due to its lightweight, small size, and agile folding, this Ecosmo brand bicycle is ideal.
What You Should Know About Mountain Bikes?
Mountain bikes have more and more followers. If you want to buy one to combine your daily trips and take advantage of it to spend fun days in the field with it, at Fitness Piratas, we guide you to choose the one that best suits your needs. Follow our instructions, and the success of the purchase will be assured.
What is a mountain bike, and what is it for?
Mountain bikes began to be seen in the 70s in the United States. Since then, they have evolved to adapt to the different modes of use on unpaved terrain. That is why it is sometimes confusing to choose the right MTB since multiple factors such as the type of suspension or the wheels’ size are used.
How many types of mountain bikes are there depending on the suspension?
We can find bicycles with different types of damping. Those with front suspension (rigid or semi-rigid) to those with full suspension (also called double suspension). Choosing one suspension or another will depend on where we are going to roll with it. We tell you its characteristics below.
|Rigid or semi-rigid||They lack suspension. They are not advisable on stony sections or long routes||They are cheaper than the others because they are easier to manufacture||They are light, dynamic and agile|
|Double suspension||They are more comfortable. More effort is needed for the climbs because they carry more pieces||Its price is higher||Weigh more|
What wheels to choose when buying a mountain bike?
The smaller wheels (27.5 ”) will provide you with more significant acceleration because they are lighter and provide you with greater rigidity. On the contrary, the larger wheels (29 ”) are more stable, immensely appreciated on uneven terrain. Besides, they allow you to travel more meters with each pedal stroke.
What should I keep in mind before starting mountain biking?
Suppose you are doubtful about whether Mountain Bike is your thing or not, the following interests you. In that case, since you understand that there are aspects that take months of learning in the field, you will save on unnecessary or useless expenses. Please read the following tips carefully and take them into account before starting to practice this sport:
- Runaway from the bargains: beware of prices that are too cheap (below 100 euros). It is preferable to get a more expensive bicycle and gain safety, robustness, manageability, and access to components.
- Be careful with your efforts: you must be consistent when starting to practice this sport. The ideal is to start climbing at a gentle pace and increase it halfway through the route.
- Dose your strength weekly: at the beginning, we want to go out without rest. However, it is preferable to dose our outings and do them more often over time.
- Listen to your teammates: as in this sport, it is common to go out accompanied, especially the first few times, let them advise you, and soak up their wisdom.
- Hydration: our performance will always be better if we hydrate correctly and often.
- Take care of your bike’s drivetrain: when shifting, take a short pause while the chain is shifting. You will thus guarantee more outstanding durability to your bicycle.
- Relax: it is common to feel that your hands go to sleep since when we start in this sport, we tend to go tense and with clenched fists. Let your energy flow without fear.
What types of mountain bikes are there?
Isn’t a car the same as a car from Toledo? Well, the same thing happens with mountain bikes. All of them are designed to roll on unpaved terrain, although there are different types of mountain bikes, each one focused on a specific type of use. We tell you about it in the following table.
|Trail (or All Mountain)||They are used to roll on unpaved sections in general (forest tracks, dirt roads and mountain paths). They are oriented to recreational use to roll at a light pace. They are ideal for beginners|
|Decline||They are used to descend at full speed through the field or through sections with stairs. It can be done with double shock or rigid bikes. They are designed to withstand drops and bumps|
|Cross Country (also known as rally or XC)||They are used to cross mountain sections at high speed. They are used to compete in the Olympic Games, the World Cup and elite races|
|Enduro||They are bikes designed to go up and down. To do routes through mountain paths and trails with wide slopes and some jumps|
What material are mountain bikes made of?
Today, not only are racing bikes made with the right components, but also standard ones. Now, thanks to great competition, MTBs have excellent quality, resistance, and durable suspensions, brakes, and gears at very competitive prices. Here we tell you what materials are made of.
|Steel||The best quality material for money and the pioneer in mountain bikes|
|Aluminum||It is lighter than steel, but less resistant. Very well absorbs impacts|
|Titanium||It is one of the lightest metals, although also more expensive.
Its main characteristic is elasticity.
Due to its price, few brands choose titanium for the frames of their mountain bikes
|Carbon fiber||Absorbs vibrations from the ground well.
It is more flexible than other materials, among its drawbacks is that it breaks easily
What is the most critical part of the mountain bike?
Without a doubt, the chassis or frame is the most critical part of a mountain bike. For simplicity, it is the skeleton of the bike, so it cannot be too big, as it could break. The chassis can be made of different materials, and below we will tell you the characteristics of each one.
|Of steel||They are very affordable. They essentially provide comfort||Steel is less resistant than other materials|
|Carbon fiber||It is a high quality material, great lightness and good resistance||It is very fragile in the event of a fall. Its price is not so affordable|
|Titanium||It is the lightest and strongest of the four. It is the most used in competitions||Its price is the highest|
|Of aluminum||It is as strong as steel, so it allows a great handling of the bike||On uneven floors, its great rigidity can be very unpleasant|
What types of the bike can we find according to the modality that is practiced?
The different mountain biking specialties have adopted specific modalities for the use of bikes with their characteristics. This has meant that the use of these bikes has been relegated to groups of adventurers. We tell you what modalities exist and what each of these specialties is about.
|Free ride||They are light, manageable and resistant bikes and are not designed to support long distances.|
|Of a speed||They are fixed gear bikes and their entire movement depends on the speed with which they are pedaled. They are ridden by people in excellent physical shape.|
|Path||Bicycles for safe descents. They have long-travel suspension.|
|Downhill||They are heavy and reinforced bikes because the terrain is rocky and uneven.|
What is the best mountain bike to start with?
More and more people are practicing mountain biking. If you are also considering starting to practice this sport, the first step is to get a bike. But what is the ideal one for the first contact? Experts recommend a front suspension bike. We tell you why:
- They are cheaper: this is an essential factor since you do not know if you will like them. That is why it is preferable to make a smaller investment.
Although they all require pedaling to move, they are easier to use; front suspension bikes are lighter and more efficient than full-suspension bikes.
- It is more resistant and durable: it does not have shock absorbers that need care or maintenance.
- It is more versatile: this type of bike is used to descend the mountain and travel long distances. With it, you will experience different sensations in this sport thanks to its incredible versatility.
Buying Guide For Mountain Bike
There is a wide variety of brands and models, not only in mountain biking but also in all sports disciplines. This can be an advantage or a disadvantage. In the following lines, we tell you the characteristics that a good mountain bike should have to make your purchase optimal:
Frames are usually standard on beginner and amateur level bikes. The difference, therefore, lies in the assembly and components. Although each brand has its chassis, which can vary in some characteristics, two factors within the frame can guide us when choosing a bike of one type or another:
The height of the standover (top tube): The steeper it is, the better.
Design: The bike should have a more relaxed geometry (with a more open head angle).
According to triathlete Borja Plaza, the ideal size for M, L, and XL bikes is 29″, while for S and XS sizes, it is 27.5. This is so because the smaller wheel is lighter, so it is suitable for shorter riders. If what we want is to start with descents and jumps, we will also choose the smaller wheel”.
It is one of the most critical elements of our mountain bike since it is the only damping element. Below we will tell you what models of forks you can find in the market so that, if you can choose, you know which is the one that best suits your needs.
|Suntour XCM||They are the most basic level of forks and do not have a long life|
|RockShox XC 30||It is of very good quality, as they offer great reliability and resistance|
|Air fork||They are of a higher level and lighter than spring|
|RockShox Recon Gold||They are made of aluminum (lighter than the steel ones)
They are the most professional forks
The best way to start mountain biking is to choose from the second category onwards (RockShox or higher), although air forks are a better option if the budget allows it. If we do not find any of the models mentioned above, it is convenient to determine the equivalents.
Only if it is about the disc and hydraulic brakes are we talking about good brakes. It depends on this factor that we do not destroy our hands when braking and that we get a good response when we want to stop our bike on the way down. The most common brands are Tektro and Shimano.
On a bicycle, the transmission makes us move forward, adapting to the terrain with the different gears. To understand us, it is about what we commonly know as ‘gears,’ ‘gears,’ or ‘speeds.’ The optimal transmission for a beginner level is 2×10 or even 1×11.
Typically, the tires that come standard on our first bike are quickly replaced with better ones. If we want to fit new tires, they are versatile and maintain a good grip. Buying models from previous years is an excellent option to save money since only the design varies.
Its function is to protect the wheel’s contact with the ground’s imperfections (such as stones, mud, grass, or water). They must be carefully selected since a good suspension increases the rider’s comfort, and a lousy suspension will only add weight to the user.
The great tide of components and models of mountain bikes means that, when choosing, we must take into account several factors. The fundamental thing is to know the use that we will give it since it is not the same to go for quiet walks through the field than to train by forcing each component to the maximum due to the terrain’s complications.
Besides, we must be realistic and know what type of terrain we will take our mountain bike on, since the more abrupt and hindered it is, the more demanding and of better quality the components will have to be. We must not forget that our bikes will cross forests, climb mountains and circulate through rocky terrain.