With so many bikes being made today, it may seem like the differences between men’s and women’s bicycles are hardly noticeable, if they exist at all. In fact, many women ride men’s bikes and prefer it over bicycles made for women. But there are differences that you need to know about before choosing the right bike for you.
It’s subtle, but the handlebars on a man’s bike tends to be a little wider compared to a woman’s bike. The difference is not much, often just a couple of inches. But this is because men tend to have broader shoulders compared to women which accounts for the wider handlebars.
In addition, men tend to have longer arms as well, which accounts for the stem of the handlebars to be longer. Again, the differences are subtle, and most may not notice, but they are there and an important consideration when choosing which bike is for you.
For the most part the seats tend to be the same if only because it is less expensive for manufactures to make bike seats of different shapes and sizes without accounting for the differences between men and women. However, for the more expensive seats you’ll notice that men tend to have longer, narrow seats compared to women. This accounts for the subtle difference generally speaking between men and women in terms of the pelvic area and the bone structure which is used when sitting down.
Plus, the higher-grade seats will have a space in the middle to relieve pressure on the perineum which otherwise might cause discomfort or numbness to occur. For those who are serious about riding, choosing a top-of-the-line seat should be a priority when selecting a bike.
Structure of the Frame
The traditional differences in bikes made for men and women go back to a time when most women wore dresses. On men’s bikes, there is a horizontal bar from the handlebars to the seat. Whereas on women’s bikes the bar starts at the handlebars, but slopes down until it connects just above the gear and pedals.
The reason for the difference was that several decades ago most women wore dresses and the lower placement of the bar allowed for those wearing dresses to mount the bike easier. Today, the top bar on women’s bikes do not slope down nearly as much, but it is still shorter and often set lower compared to a man’s bike.
This is because women tend to have shorter torsos and longer legs compared to men of the same height. You will often see the seat of a women’s bike sit higher up compared to a man’s bike as well. This accounts for the longer legs and lower center of gravity which offers better control.
The Final Word
Overall, the differences between men’s and women’s bike will need to be considered before you make a purchase. The differences themselves are based on the general distinctions between the anatomy of men and women which may not apply to specific persons.