Bike shopping can be a daunting task. You may have seen a 28- or 29-inch bike in a shop and wondered, “wow! Can I ride that?” The answer to “28-inch bike for what size person?” depends on height. A tall bike requires a tall rider, leaning this answer to taller adults. So, how tall do you need to be to ride a 28-inch bike? Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about bikes with 28-inch wheels, including how and why to size yourself for a bike before entering the shop, what bikes come with 28-inch wheels, and what a “29er” is.
Size Matters – Here’s Why
Measuring yourself before you get a bike is important. Getting a bike of the wrong size is more than a waste of money. There can be serious risks to your health and safety. Let’s look at why you should measure yourself for a bike.
Above all, you want to be safe when riding a bike. You want to be able to stretch your leg just enough to be comfortable when pedalling. Your knees should not touch the handlebars as you ride, and you should not strain your legs to reach the pedals. These situations can be dangerous to your health, especially when riding at high speeds!
Likewise, an unsafe bike is an uncomfortable bike. In the case of road bikes, poor riding posture can also lead to back pain and other issues. But perhaps most importantly, the more comfortable your bike is, the more you want to ride it.
Many people buy bikes for exercise. That means they are looking for a physical activity that burns calories effectively. If you can stretch your leg all the way out without straining, it not only feels good but lets you exert the right amount of force for a fast, smooth ride. If your bike is not the right size, you cannot pedal effectively, and you will tire more easily. This will also make it less fun to ride your bike.
Even if your goal is weight loss, you should enjoy riding your bike. Keeping your bike efficient, comfortable, and safe means you can ride farther, longer, and faster!
How to Size Your Bike
Two things are required to find your ideal bike frame: your height and your inseam length. Although your height may be easy to find, the same is not true of your inseam. But what is the inseam, and how do you find it? We will tell you how to do this so that you do not have to go to a bike shop to do it.
You will need to do a few things to measure your inseam length. The first thing to do is take off your shoes for an accurate measurement. You will also need a tape measure and an assistant to help you take the measurements. Ideally, you also want a book roughly as thick as a bike seat to put between your legs. By measuring from the top of the book to the floor, you will have a better idea of how a bike will feel between your legs.
Once you have your inseam and height measurements, please use this size chart to determine if you can handle a frame for a 28-inch wheel. For the most part, 28-inch bikes will be good for taller adults.
|Height||Inseam Length||Frame Size|
|6’4” +||35” +||23” +|
Please note that adult bike sizes are measured by frame height. Even though this piece is about wheels, what matters is that you are safe on your frame. A 26-inch bike frame will not usually be able to hold a 28-inch tire. Please ask a professional what size wheels your bike frame can handle; some road bikes, for example, have bigger allowances than others, meaning that they can handle many different wheel sizes. Buying online will not do these wheels justice.
What Bikes Have 28-Inch Wheels
If you like a certain type of bicycle and need to upgrade, never fear. Many kinds of bikes can come with 28-inch wheels in various tire types. Here are just a few of them:
These bikes are designed with speed in mind. They have light, slender frames and tall, narrow tires. Your ideal posture is leaning over the handlebars, so your knees mustn’t hit them when riding.
Hybrid bikes blend road bikes and mountain bikes to get the best of both worlds. Each hybrid bike is built slightly differently. It is worth seeing a particular hybrid bike in person to see if it meets your needs.
The sport of cyclocross is an intense, all-terrain bike race that often makes riders dismount and remount to overcome obstacles. At first glance. cyclocross bikes look very similar to road bikes, but a closer look will reveal knobby tires and frame features that allow them to be carried easily. If a hybrid bicycle is a blend of road and mountain bikes, a cyclocross bike has to be able to take that idea and run with it.
The bike of the future! Electric bikes come with a motor that either helps you pedal or does some of the work for you. Electric bikes can have almost any kind of tire, but buyer beware—electric bikes get very expensive!
If there is a type of bike you like, there is a decent chance that it can hold a 28-inch wheel. The main exception to this is mountain bikes. Those do not have a standard 28-inch tire option. If you look for a 28-inch mountain bike, you are guaranteed to come across a “29er” instead.
What is a “29er?”
You may have noticed that mountain bikes have been almost absent from this article. That is because mountain bikes do not technically have 28-inch wheels. Instead, they have bikes with 27.5- and 29-inch measurements. This has to do with industry standards; a 29-inch mountain bike tire has the same rim diameter as a 700mm road wheel and a regular 28-inch bike tire. The choice comes down to a 27.5-inch wheel or a 29-inch wheel for mountain bikes. The industry is trending towards 29-inch tires.
By extension, that means more people will soon be able to ride 29ers. The 29er is so popular in mountain bikes that 26-inch tires are becoming rare. Because the industry is leaning so heavily into 29-inch bikes, more companies are making it possible for people who aren’t particularly tall to ride 29ers. If you’ve ever wanted to ride a tall bike as a short person, you may only need to wait for the industry to catch up!
When asking “28-inch bike for what size person?”, the answer will always boil down to height and inseam size. Your bicycle frame will be the next factor in determining whether you can ride a 28-inch bike or not. And, if you want to ride a 29er, there are more and more mountain bikes designed to accommodate people of different heights as time goes on. While we cannot guarantee that there is a 28-inch bike for everyone, we hope this article has made it easier to determine if a 28-inch bike is right for you.