womens bike sizing

Last updated: Nov, Mon, 2020

What size bike should I get? Here’s the guide for womens bike sizing, which is divided into tables for road bikes, mountain bikes and hybrid bikes.

bike size guide

Popular bike styles are everywhere. Therefore, if you do not want backache, choosing a bike size that suits your height and body ratio is the key to comfortable riding.

So you need to know few sets of figures about your body. As a general starting point, the fit size of the bike depends on the height of the rider. Followed by the inside leg and arm length.

Measure your height

Womens bike sizing target your height. With your shoes off, stand upright against a wall, with your shoulders back and legs together. Use a pencil to make a small mark on the wall above your head.

Make sure you hold the pencil parallel to the floor. Then measure from the floor to your mark, in centimetres or feet and inches.

measure your inside leg length

With your shoes off, stand upright with your back against a wall. Place a book/ruler between your legs, level with your crotch.

Then measure from the floor to the top of the book/ruler, in centimetres or feet and inches (it’s easier if a friend helps).

If you’re a short woman, it is necessary to measure your inside leg length. Compare the data in womens bike sizing chart, which can pull you out of the two sizes.

How to convert feet and inches to centimeters

While most of the world uses the metric system to measure length, the United States still uses feet and inches (called the imperial system).

To convert your height to its metric equivalent, start by calculating your height in inches only. A woman who’s 5 feet, 4 inches tall is 64 inches.

One inch equals 2.54 centimeters (cm). So, to make the conversion, simply multiply your height in inches by 2.54 to get your height in centimeters.

In this case, a person who’s 5 feet, 6 inches tall, once converted to the metric system, is 162.56 cm tall (64 x 2.54).

In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the average height for women is about 5 feet, 4 inches and the average height for men is about 5 feet, 9 inches.

Say another word, The average height for men and women differs throughout the world. And the womens bike size chart also not, too.

womens road bike size chart

Rider HeightWomen’s Road Frame Size
4’10” – 5’1″(147cm – 155cm)XX-Small (44cm – 46cm)
5’1″ – 5’3″(155cm – 160cm)X-Small (47cm – 49cm)
5’3″ – 5’5″(160cm – 165cm)Small (50cm – 52cm)
5’5″ – 5’8″(165cm – 172cm)Medium (53cm – 55cm)
5’8″ – 5’10″(172cm – 180cm)Large (56cm – 57cm)

If you like a faster, more aggressive positioning, then you may want to try a road bike that suits you.

Today, the top tube of many road bikes inclines slightly downward (we call it the compact frame). And you hard to find a bike with a diamond frame.

The tilted top-tube can be better compatible with riders of different heights. Especially for short women, but is easier to find a suitable size.

Another advantage is that you don’t have to worry about scratching your crotch. That allows a rider to safely stand over the bicycle at stops.

The womens road bike size chart just as a overview only. More often, you should match the frame size recommended by the manufacturer.

women’s mountain bike size chart

Rider HeightWomen’s Mountain Frame Size
4’10” – 5’2″(148cm – 158cm)X-Small(13″ ~ 14″)
5’2″ – 5’6″(158cm – 168cm)Small(15″ ~ 16″)
5’7″ – 5’9″(168cm – 178cm)Medium(17″ ~ 18″)
5’10” – 6’1″(178cm – 185cm)Large(19″~ 20″)

MTB’s are engineered for off-road riding. Traditionally, they feature 26-inch wheels, but they are hardly visible on the market today.

What we see more is the launch of 29″ and 27.5″ (650b) wheeled bikes. These new size bikes provide faster speeds and are generally better able to absorb bumps.

Again, this women’s mountain bike size chart just a rough guide. You should follow the form given womens bike frame size by the manufacturer unless you do not find the chart.

women’s hybrid bike size chart

Rider HeightWomen’s Hybrid Frame Size
4’10” – 5’2″(148cm – 158cm)X-Small(13″ – 14″)
5’2″ – 5’6″(158cm – 168cm)Small(15″ – 16″)
5’6″ – 5′ 10″(168cm – 178cm)Medium(17″ – 18″)
5’10” – 6’1″(178cm – 185cm)Large(19″- 20″)

Hybrid bikes are usually used for commuting, city or leisure riding. They are have mountain bike style, or look like a road bike but have a flat handlebar.

When choosing your hybrid bike, it’s best to consider whether you’ll be riding mainly on-road or off-road. As it has different sub-types.

frame size measurement

The industry has no standard way to describing the sizing of a (womens) bicycle. Because the bike frame of each model is different(that means you have so options).

The manufacturer usually attaches its own bicycle data sheet so that you can find the size that matches your body proportions. Even better, many manufacturers give a recommended range of height.

First of all, you don’t have to be bothered the table chart provided from the bicycle manufacturer. You just have to stay in the height column.

Also, when people talk about bike size, they are specifically referring to frame size, so bike size and frame size are often used interchangeably.

The size of adult bicycles is determined by the length of the seat-tube (CT). Or it depends on the height from the center of the pedal to the effective top-tube (CC).

Whether it’s women bike sizing or not, this involves the calculation of trigonometric functions, and the value may contain a decimal point.

Some manufacturers may round up, while others may erase the decimal point. This means that even (50cm) or odd (49cm, 51cm) frames are actually the same size.

Although there may be differences between different models, but more useful to use small, medium, and large names to describe the size when you search.

For urban or mountain bikes that typically range from XS or S to M or L, it’s easy to estimate the required size based on your height.

But what if you get stuck? You might like the size bigger or smaller, depending on how you like to feel on the bike.

However, a short woman like you (check your inseam and look at stand-over height by the bike chart), I would recommend you to choose the small one. Especially when choosing a road bike.

Instead, your arm length can farther reach(check your bike effective top-tube digit), I would suggest you try the larger one.

As for some one-size bicycle models, like beach cruiser bike be fond of tagged 26 inch or 24-inch, which refers to the diameter of the wheel.

By the way, the average inside leg of 8-12 years old is 24″. This is why you can guess that the kids bike size is based on the wheel size.

Wheel diameters for adult bike common come in three sizes: 26in, 27.5in(650b or 700C) and 29-inch. If you are short and thin, check out bikes designed for young riders(24in or 26in).

sizing for short or tall women

There are sure to be benefits to purchase a women bike. It saves the extra cost of changing the contact point to a women-special saddle and narrower handlebars.

Some manufacturers argue that differences in limb length and weight distribution mean that women are best served using female-specific frame, which are created from scratch based on female data.

However, choosing a women-specific bike is not suitable for every female rider, it only depends on your body and riding preferences. You can also take a unisex bike.

Unisex means that they are all women’s bikes, and are all men’s bikes. If you’re a tall woman, don’t tie yourself down.

Just because they didn’t mark a bike as a “womens bike”, there doesn’t mean those can’t be ridden by a woman.

On the other hand, women’s bikes seems to be a game for short riders, and almost do not store X-large or larger sizes for tall.

Specialized and Trek believe that tall ladies and men usually do not show statistical differences between genders.

They deem that adjusting the contact points of the bicycle (saddle, handlebars and pedal) can make tall ladies reach a desired comfort point.

overweight riders

It’s not just bike size that’s bothering you. Obesity is very common in our lives. Are you looking for a plus size bike? If you are over 250 pounds, then road bikes are basically not for you.

As road cycling is a sport for thin riders. Those bikes are usually limited to weight below 250 lbs, which is also one of the conditions for providing after-sales service.

If you’re wish find out bikes for overweight riders (even over 300 lbs), you can attempt one in the hybrid category.

The tires of hybrid bikes are relatively wider and have a larger contact area with the ground, which means that they can withstand greater pressure and will not sink into soft surfaces (such as dirt and gravel).

Wide tires can also better absorb bumps and provide higher comfort. The disadvantage is that riding on a smooth asphalt road will hinder your speed.

Road bikes have thinner tires and are more likely to blow out for obese riders. Even or at the moment of a puncture, the bike will hurt you. Or you squash the bicycle frame or wheels. Sorry.

If you want to check a mountain bike, i will recommend the fat bike. Those bikes have really big wheels, and have fun.

OK. Let’s go back to the title. I hope you have a clear understanding of this womens bike sizing guide.

Last, it is worth noting that when you get a new bicycle, you still need to make slight adjustments to the height of the saddle and handlebars so that you can get a comfortable posture. Thank you.