Any keen eye cannot fail to see the difference between men’s and women’s bicycles. All the same, why do women’s bikes have a lower crossbar? Does it have any significant effect on comfort?
Women bikes have a lower crossbar that makes mounting and dismounting easy and modest for the ladies. Also, a low bar creates space for the skirts as the ladies go riding.
All the same, modern-day women rarely wear skirts while riding, and therefore, women’s bikes with low crossbars are not as popular as they were a few decades ago.
Are you in a rush? Here are five of the best women’s bikes that have low crossbars.
Why Do Women’s Bikes Have A Lower Cross Bar? – Detailed Answer
Women’s bicycles have a lower crossbar because in the late 1800s, when bicycles were first invented, women wore tight corsets and skirts. Women’s clothing was not adaptable to riding bikes in the same way men’s pants were.
To accommodate women’s fashion, manufacturers made a bicycle crossbar that would be much lower than a man’s bike. This would keep the woman’s skirt out of the way while she was cycling.
Today, most women wear pants or skirts that they can easily straddle a bike with. There is no justified purpose for the lower crossbar on women’s bikes.
As women started wearing less restrictive clothing, there was no need for a lower crossbar on bikes. However, because many people have grown to expect this design element, it has remained on nearly all women’s bicycles ever since.
What’s The Difference Between Women’s And Men’s Bikes?
Bicycles for men and women can be different in design, component quality, geometry construction, and tire type, to name a few things.
Women’s bikes are typically more upright – meaning the rider sits upright on the bicycle. This position leaves the leg muscles relaxed and avoids excessive strain on thigh muscles like what often happens with male riders who adopt an athletic stance (i.e., their legs come up too high to make contact with the pedals.)
Women-specific frames have shorter top tubes to create a better fit for women who have proportionately shorter torsos.
In addition, the saddles on most women’s bikes are designed specifically for females, and they also feature narrower handlebars that enable the rider to cycle in an upright position with their wrists held straight.
Typically, men’s bikes are equipped with more gears and braking systems, while women’s bikes will have a less steep angle on the frame, making riding or getting off the bike without placing excess stress on your knees.
What Is A Women’s Bike Crossbar Adapter – Is It Worth Buying?
A bike crossbar adapter is an accessory that you can add to your step-through bike or a low crossbar bike to form a temporary top tube. With such an accessory, it is possible to transport your bike to a car rack.
Actually, a bike crossbar adapter is a practical and inexpensive way to carry your bike in a car.
Bike crossbar adapters are inconspicuous and hold up well. They can also be easily taken off again, stowed away, and used as soon as you want to take your bike with you in the car again.
Just because your bike doesn’t have a top tube that’s high enough for the rack shouldn’t make you not enjoy your camping. Get a crossbar adaptor, and let’s go for the beach camp.
One of the best adapters you can go for is the Thule Bicycle Frame Cross-Bar adapter (View on Amazon), a universal fit accessory and only weighs 45g. In addition, it is ideal for bicycles with stem to Seatpost measurements ranging from 18” to 28”.
Notably, you don’t need any special tools or skills to mount the top tube adaptor.
What Are The Advantages Of Bikes Low Cross Bars?
Lower crossbars create a lower stand-over height and a more comfortable riding position for shorter people.
People with mobility issues might also choose bikes with low crossbars because it’s easier to get on and off of them.
If you are short or have a back injury, these bikes provide a more comfortable saddle height.
The handlebars are closer to the rider. Therefore, if you have a neck injury, this is a better setup as it reduces strains on your neck and lower back.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Are Women’s Bikes Step Through?
Step-through bikes allow women to wear dresses and skirts without having to lift them up before climbing on.
This makes it much easier to climb on and off the bike. Many women feel safer wearing dresses when riding a step-through frame since the design allows them to easily mount and dismount without showing too much leg.
Actually, women in dresses or skirts, find it hard to ride a bike that has a high crossbar.
In addition, step-through bikes also help shorter riders who would otherwise have a hard time reaching over the crossbar with their feet and then mounting and riding away.
Can A Man Ride A Women’s Bike?
A man can ride a women’s bicycle without much of a fuss. The difference between a women’s bike and men’s is typically in size, weight, height, and geometry.
The features of a women’s bike are designed to fit the average woman. However, the geometry of a mountain bike is still designed with a man’s physique in mind.
So if you’re shorter than 5’8” or you have short arms and legs, a woman’s specific bike may be right for you.
The major difference, however, is with the accessories found on women’s bikes. For example, a man may have to change the bike saddle for one that is ideal for male riders.
Can A woman Ride A Men’s Bike?
Absolutely, a woman can ride a men’s bike without much problem.
However, it might be a bit challenging because the frames aren’t usually adjustable to fit women’s shorter torsos. On the other hand, many bikes come with an adjustable height and tilt that should do just fine for you.
At the same time, one may have to change the bike saddle for one that is ideal for women’s anatomy.
In Summary – Why Do Women’s Bikes Have A Lower Crossbar?
Women bikes have a lower crossbar to allow easier mounting, better posture, and lighter weight.
Women bikes often provide shorter top tubes (distance between the seat and the handlebar) to allow for a more upright riding posture. This riding position is more comfortable for casual riders.
For smaller-sized men, ladies specific bike geometry may offer improved fit over their “one size fits all” approach.
If you are endowed with short legs and a long torso, a ladies’ bike may be the correct choice for you as well.