Ripping around berms, piloting over jumps, and performing advanced tricks such as 180-degres, J hops, bunny hops, spine transfer, and fakie is fun for kids and teens who love to do stunts. But can adults ride BMX bikes too or stick to standard road or mountain bikes instead?
Adults can ride BMX bikes because frame sizes are easily adjustable to fit their height and riding style. With 21-inch top tubes, adult riders get sufficient room to swing the bike and perform short seat stay and advanced airborne tricks.
Provided you can get the bike to fit in regards to handlebar position and seat height, you shouldn’t have a problem riding a BMX bike as an adult. From what I’ve seen lately, it shouldn’t be surprising to see a forty or fifty-something-year-old adults riding a BMX.
In addition to the structural design that allows acrobatic body movements, BMX bikes have saddles that allow you to touch the ground while sitting so you don’t lose your balance.
Moreover, the design of the BMX bikes is such that they are easy to get on. Not to mention that they tend to fit in small areas better than standard bikes.
And if you’re willing to accept it, BMX cycling has nothing to do with age. So you might as well consider bmxing until you breathe your last.
In a hurry? Here are the best BMX bikes for adults you can check out on amazon:
Best BMX Bikes For Adults (Summary)
Schwinn Sting Pro and Predator Cruiser: Best 24-inch Adult BMX Bike
Mongoose Legion Freestyle: Best Fat Tire Adult BMX Bike
Elite BMX Bicycle: Best 20-inch Adult BMX Bike
Framed Impact: 20-inch BMX for Adults
How Can Adults Ride BMX Bikes?
Whether you just hit 30 and you look forward to getting started with BMX bikes or you’re in your 40s and the bmxing fire in you still burns, here’s how you can ride a BMX bike well.
1. Safety Comes Frist
Whether you have experience in bmxing or it’s going to be your first time to try it out as an adult, safety comes first.
Before you go out to try new tricks such as flair, 360 noise pivot, backflip barspin, or 180 hop, bundle up with the right protective gear just to be safe.
Generally, your safety cycling gear will include:
- BMX shoes: I recommend the Etnies Barge LS Skate Shoes (Amazon Link)
- Shin guards: You want to consider a model such as Leatt Dual Axis Shin Guard (Amazon Link)
- Elbow pads I like the JBM BMX Bike Elbow Pads (Amazon Link)
- Cycling gloves: The Speecle Full Finger Bike Gloves (Amazon Link) are great for this.
- Cycling helmet: The Giro Isode MIPS (Amazon Link) is my recommended pick.
Shoes and gloves may not be necessary, but since they make a difference, especially when landing with a huge impact, they may ease the intense of the landing so you don’t strain nearly as much as you would without them.
2. Ride the BMX Bike Standing Up
There’s a reason why BMX bikes have low seats. And it’s not so you can sit on it when riding.
The structure of the BMX bike is so that you ride it when standing up.
If anything, the saddle sits in a lower position to give you the clearance you need for acrobatic body movement. That makes it possible to perform different tricks as you ride.
3. Go Easy on BMX Tricks
There are many BMX tricks you can try, some more challenging and risker than others are.
It’s tempting to go hard on the more advanced stuff, especially if you have prior bmxing experience.
Try to go easy on simple as well as complex tricks instead. Start with the most natural and easy ones and then transition into more complex stunts as you continue to get used to your BMX bike.
What Size BMX Bikes do Adults Use?
Adult riders are 160+cm taller should consider 20-inch wheeled BMX with tubes in the range between 20.5-inches and 21.5-in. Even 22, 24, and 26-inch wheeled BMX bikes make a good option for adults who want to continue to enjoy the value and adventure of bicycling motocross.
If you’re shorter than 1.6 meters, a youth size BMX bike is the best option to consider. These BMX bikes are usually 20-inch wheeled with top tubes in the range of 18.5 and 20.75 inches and they fit riders of height between 130cm and 170cm.
Note that in determining the BMX bike size for an adult, it’s the size of the top tube that counts. So if you’re more on the shorter side, go with the 18.5-inch top tube. If your height sits on the 1.7m mark, the 20.75-inch top tube would be the best option to consider.
Can Adults Ride 20-inch BMX Bikes?
Adults can ride 20-inch BMX bikes provided they have prior experience in cycling. Should it be the first time you’re trying out BMX, wear protective gear to keep yourself self against possible injuries when balancing and coordinating as you do simple and advanced tricks.
The type of protective gear to use to ride safety on a 20-inch BMX bike depends on your riding experience and skills. If you’re already familiar with bmxing, you only need protection from falls. In such a case, knee and elbow pads can make a big difference because they provide cushioning against forceful impact to keep you safe.
If you’re up for some challenging bmxing sports, where you jump over obstacle, do down rumps, or jump off walls, you will need more protective gears. You should consider getting full-face helmets, shin guards, as well as cycling gloves.
For a 20-inch bike, the Elite BMX Bicycle (Amazon Link) can make good option.
Can Adults Ride 24-inch BMX Bikes?
Adults can ride 24-inch BMX bikes provided they stand over 170cm height. 24-inch BMX bikes provide more predictability and stability, but they tend to be longer and require more reach. Also, they’re heavier than 20-inch models and may be challenging to maneuver for complex tricks.
Some riders argue that bigger wheels on a BMX bike don’t mean overall stability. But even if that were the case, you can easily feel the comfort and stability that the bike offers as you ride.
In any case, 24-inch means quick handling and a tighter wheelbase, which you don’t get if you drop all the way to a 20-inch. You will also love a 24-inch BMX bike more because it handles jumps and berms better.
I recommend Schwinn Sting Pro and Predator Cruiser (Amazon Link) for adults interested in 24-inch bikes. The hi-ten steel makes it lightweight without compromising the build. And the large wheel provides more stability for easy bmxing.
As you can see, adults can ride BMX bikes and perform simple tricks and complex stunts just like older kids and teenagers do. Moreover, the effort by manufacturers to make BMX bikes for adults goes a long way to confirm that indeed an adult can ride a BMX.