18 Inch Bike for What Size Person?

The term 18 inch always pops up on online bike searches, and it can be confusing given that the search results feature bikes with 18-inch wheels and 18-inch frames. So, 18-inch bike for what size person?

Regular bikes with an 18-inch wheel suit 5-9-year-olds while their BMX equivalent suits 7-11-year-olds. In contrast, mountain bikes and hybrid bikes with an 18-inch frame suits riders who are 5’9″ -6’3″ and 6’0″ -6’3″, respectively, while road bikes are best for 4’10” -5’2″.

So, yes, an 18-inch bike can refer to a bike with 18-inch wheels or an 18-inch frame. If you are searching for kids’ bikes or BMX bikes, pay attention to the wheel size but if you are looking for other bikes, then focus on the frame size.

I’ll explain what 18-inch means for various bike types and even compare the size with others.

what age is an 18 inch bike for

In a rush? See our most recommended 18-inch bikes on the hotlist below:

5 Best 18 Inch Bikes

  1. Royal Baby Freestyle Kids Bike: Best 18-inch Kids’ Bike
  2. Mongoose Legion L18: Best 18-inch BMX Bike
  3. Schwinn S29 Mountain Bike: Best 18-inch Mountain Bike
  4. Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike: Best 18-inch Hybrid Bike
  5. Tommaso Imola Endurance Road Bike: Best 18-inch Road Bike

18 Inch Bike for What Size Person?

As mentioned earlier, we use the term 18-inch to refer to either the wheel size or frame size of a bike. That means we match the wheel size with the age (mostly) and the frame size with the height (and sometimes the inseam).

To help you understand how to differentiate the two, let’s look at the relationship between 18-inch bikes and age and height.

Age Vs Height

18 Inch Bike for What Age?

When it comes to matching 18-inch bikes with the rider’s age, only two bikes come to mind; a regular kids’ bike and a BMX. Let’s look at them individually.    

18-inch Kids Bike for What Size Person?

The term 18-inch in kids’ bikes refers to a bike with 18-inch wheel size. Such bikes usually suit 5-9-year-olds or about 48-60 inches tall.

You can use both your kids’ age and height to find a suitable 18-inch bike in such a case.

For comparison reasons, here’s a kids’ size chart for the various wheel sizes:

Wheel Size (Inches)Rider’s Age (Years)Rider’s Height 
12-inch1-428-38 inches
14-inch3-436-40 inches
16-inch3-738-48 inches
18-inch5-942-52 inches
20-inch7-1348-60 inches
24-inch10-1556-66 inches

One 18 inch bike for girl or boy is the Royal Baby Freestyle Kids Bike. This kids’ bike has a BMX design that makes it comfortable for freestyling.

It only weighs 27.9 pounds and comes accessorized with a bell, water bottle, and a kickstand. So, it’s ride-ready, and more importantly, it’s safe owing to its highly responsive brakes, solid steel frame, nonslip pedals, stable pneumatic tire, and a chain guard.

The best bit is that the kids’ bike comes in stunning and charming bright colors to wow your audacious youngster.

is an 18 inch bike too big for a 6 year old

18-inch BMX Bike for What Size Person?

We also resort to the wheel size when referring to an 18-inch BMX bike. Ordinarily, an 18-inch BMX bike suits 7-11-year-olds or about 4’0″ -4’10” tall. So, you can still use the height alongside the age to determine if an 18-inch bike will fit your kid.

Below is a table comparing 18-inch BMX bikes with other BMX wheel sizes:

Wheel SizeRider’s Age (Years)Rider’s Height

One freestyling  18 inch bike for boy or girl is the Mongoose Legion L18. This kids’ BMX comes with a hi-ten steel frame that can take all the physical abuse of the streets.

Its top tube length is slightly smaller than most 18-inch BMX bikes to match kids as young as five and under 4’8″.

The 18 inch bike BMX is generally safe to ride, thanks to its precision-speed control u-brakes and robust hi-ten steel fork and frame. It’s a freestyle BMX, thus perfect for stunts on the streets and parks.

18 Inch Bike for What Height?

While the wheel size dictates the age that an 18-inch bike is best for, the frame size comes in handy in determining the rider’s height. That’s more important when sizing an adult mountain bike, hybrid bike, or road bike.

18-inch Mountain Bike for What Size Person?

An 18-inch mountain bike refers to a mountain bike with an 18-inch frame, which could be a large-size or extra-large option. While a large 18-inch frame suits riders who are 5’9″ -6’0″ tall and an XL 18-inch option suits those who are 6’0″ -6’3″ tall.

Below is a table comparing 18-inch MTB frames with others:

MTB Frame SizeInseam (inches)Rider’s Height
14-inch (X-Small)24-29 inches4’10”-5’1”
15/16-inch (Small)25-30 inches5’1”-5’5”
16/17inch (Medium)26-31 inches5’5”-5’5”
17/18-inch (Large)27-32 inches5’9”-6’0”
18/19-inch (X-Large)28-32 inches6’0”-6’3”
19-inch + (XX-Large)29-34 inches6’1”-6’6”

One fantastic 18-inch MTB for adults is the Schwinn S29 Mountain Bike. This 29er generally suits adults who are 5’9″ -6’2″ tall.

It comes with dual suspension and massive 29-inch wheels to take on just about any trail. With its 21-speed drivetrain comes speed, and with its mechanical disc brakes comes safety.

As long as you aren’t planning to compete with this MTB, it’s perfect for the local trails. You can use it to conquer local trails on weekends or even as your commuter bike.

Overall, you’ll appreciate how adaptive the two-wheel beast is to different terrains.

18 inch bike for boy

18-inch Hybrid Bike for What Size Person?

Hybrid, city, and commuter bikes have the same sizing model. They have the same frame sizes and, at times, similar wheel sizes.

With our focus on the frame, an 18-inch hybrid frame suits riders who are 6’0-6′” tall but with an inseam of 28-33 inches. So, it’s not just about looking at the rider’s height but also the rider’s inseam.

Below is a table comparing an 18-inch hybrid bike frame with others.

Hybrid Frame SizeInseamRider’s Height
14-inch (X-Small)24-29 inches4’10”-5’1”
15-inch (Small)25-30 inches5’1”-5’5”
16-inch (Medium)26-31 inches5’5”-5’9”
17-inch (Large)27-32 inches5’9”-6’0”
18-inch (X-Large)28-33 inches6’0”-6’3”
19-inch (XX-Large)29-34 inches6’1”-6’6”

One 18-inch  hybrid bike you can get is the Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike. This 18-inch hybrid bicycle comes with a lightweight 18-inch aluminum frame and sweep-back handlebars to allow you to ride comfortably.

Its padded seat also promises comfort as you count on its linear-pull brakes for smooth stopping and its 21-speed SRAM shifters for seamless shifting up the hill.

It comes with dual fenders for preventing mud splashes and a rear carrier to haul your groceries and other supplies. Consequently, the hybrid cycle is suitable for commuting and running errands too.

18-inch Road Bike for What Size Person?

It’s worth clarifying that we don’t have a perfect 28-inch road bike. We’ve road bikes with extra-extra-small (XXS) frames measuring 47-48cm. That’s roughly 18.5-18.9 inches.

As far as the XXS frames are concerned, the frame size is best for 4’10” -5’2″ tall.

Below is a road bike sizing guide comparing the various road bike frames and their matching rider’s heights.

Frame Size in CmFrame Size NameRider’s Height
47-48cmExtra-Extra-Small (XXS)4’10”-5’2”
49-50cmExtra-Small (XS)5’0”-5’3”
51-53cmSmall (S)5’3”-5’6”
54-55cmMedium (M)5’6”-5’9”
56-58cmLarge (L)5’9”-6’0”
58-60cmExtra-Large (XL)6’0”-6’3”
61-63cmExtra-Extra-Large (XXL)6’3”-6’6”

One road bike with an XXS frame that suits riders who are 4’10” -5’2″ tall is the Tommaso Imola Endurance Road Bike.

This road bike is for serious road cyclists who cannot afford a high-end racing bike but don’t want to settle for an entry race bike. Its frame comes with a lifetime warranty, and it enjoys a compact geometry that promotes a more relaxed ride.

Its shallow drop bars offer you extra comfort, and the bike generally utilizes 100% Shimano groupsets which promise reliability.

how tall for a 18 inch bike

People Also Ask

1. What Does 18 Inch Bike Frame Mean?

An 18-inch bike frame means the size of the frame is 18 inches. In most cases, this is a large frame size that accommodates riders starting from 5’9″ -6’0″.

2. What Age Is an 18 Inch Bike for?

An 18-inch kids’ bike usually suits kids aged 5-9 years, while an 18-inch BMX bike is best for those 7-11 years. Remember, we are talking about the wheel size here and not the frame size.

3. Is an 18 Inch Bike Too Big for A 6 Year Old?

An 18-inch kids’ bike generally suits kids 5-9 years old. So, no, an 18-inch bicycle is not too big for a 6-year-old. However, an 18-inch BMX bike is too big for a 6-year-old as such a wheel size suits 7-11-year-olds. That’s unless your 6-year-old is 4’0″ -4’11” tall.

4. 18 Inch Frame Bike for What Size Person?

An 18-inch mountain bike frame suits 5’9″ -6’3″ riders, while an 18-inch hybrid, commuter, or city bike suits those 6’0″ -6’3″ tall. However, an 18.5-18.8 inch (XXS) road bike frame fits 4’10” -5’2″ riders.

5. What Size Bike Is 18 Inch?

When referring to the frame size, an 18-inch mountain bike has a large or extra-large frame, while an 18-inch hybrid bike, commuter bike, or city bike has an extra-large frame. But once it comes to road bikes, an 18-inch frame is extra-extra-small (XXS).

6. Is 18 Inch Bike Frame Small?

The only small 18-inch frame is that of a road bike which measures 44-45cm (thus extra-extra-small). Those of a mountain bike, hybrid bike, commuter bike, and city bike start from a medium size that is likely to accommodate 5’6″ -5’9″ tall.

Also Read:

Closing Thought on 18 Inch Bike for What Size Person!

As shared, a bike’s wheel or frame can be 18 inches, which determines who rides it. If it’s the wheel size which is 18 inches, the bike is likely to be a kids’ bike or BMX. And if it’s the frame size that is 18 inches, then it’s likely to be a mountain bike, hybrid, city, or commuter bike.

But if it’s slightly more than 18 inches (18.5-18.9 inches), it’s likely to be a road bike.