Recommended Bike for 5 Foot Beginner Rider- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    37

    Recommended Bike for 5 Foot Beginner Rider

    Hello Ladies and Gents,

    My fiance and I are planning a bike-cation to the Asheville / Brevard area in about a month. I am an intermediate rider, while my fiance is a beginner rider. A few years ago when we both got into riding, she had a decent crash and has been fearful to ride on trail since. She's willing of course to give it another shot and I think that Dupont Forest seems like a good place for her to get back into it.

    Right now, she takes indoor cycling classes regularly and enjoys distance riding on a local rail trail. I am looking to upgrade her current bike with something that is more capable for our trip, and hopefully something that will inspire confidence not just for the vacation, but to explore our local trails as well.

    With that said, I was looking for some recommendations on bikes. In a recent trip to my LBS we were having discussions about possible bikes for her (Santa Cruz Chameleon 27.5+, Kona Big Honzo, Trek Procaliber). In some cases with today's trends, the top tube may be a little long for her. LBS was suggestion that a plus bike might help with her confidence. The Procaliber of course, is not a plus but they thought the geometry would work well for her with the possibility of putting a 2.6 or 2.8 on front. We tried a small Fuel Ex but the 30 inch standover was a real issue.

    I'm hoping that someone can recommend a bike for a shorter rider, or let me know if any shorter riders might have experience with any of the aforementioned. My fiance is 5 foot even. Her inseam is about 27. From mid saddle to mid peddle on her current setup is 28.5 inches, and the distance from mid saddle to the middle of the stem is 23.5 inches.

    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MSU Alum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    4,883
    If you are travelling, would it make sense to demo when you get there? That way, more than one bike could be tried and you're not committing a bunch of money.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    37
    We have definitely considered going this route to test a few things out. Renting bikes on a per-day basis for the length of time that we plan to be there is about $450 dollars or so, and I would love to just put that into her new bike if possible. I definitely understand the benefit though as I'd rather not make a $2K mistake.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mLeier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    371
    I'm 5'2" and really love my 2015 Liv Lust. I was going to go with a brand new Liv Embolden, but ended up picking this one up used instead. It's so light and fun and responsive! Standover height is comfortably low as well. My bike is a size S, but I probably would have gone with the XS if I had had the choice.

    The Liv Embolden is such a great price too. Around $1,500 US? Perfect full featured bike for getting into riding without breaking the bank, but good enough that an upgrade may never even be required!

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MSU Alum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    4,883
    Yeah....BTW, mLeier, I'm not stalking you....I was also thinking that Giant makes great bikes, with very nice componentry and a really effective rear suspension. I don't think you could go wrong.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mLeier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    371
    Haha!

    They really are great bikes. I'm amazed at how much more fun a good bike made biking and how much more confidence it gave me. There are some great deals on last years models to be had right now too. One of our local shops has a brand new 2017 XS Liv Embolden on for $1,000 CAD right now. I'm sooooo tempted to buy it for my daughter but she would be close to outgrowing it and I can't buy her a FS bike without buying my son one too (unless I want to listen to him whine about it all summer!).

  7. #7
    L1MEY
    Reputation: mahgnillig's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,487
    If I was choosing a bike for a beginner rider I'd definitely be looking at a plus bike... having 3" tyres is a real confidence booster, especially if they're set up tubeless and run at super low pressure. At her height, she'll need an XS (I'm 5'2.5" and was on the borderline between XS and small in brands that offered both, went with small in the end as the XS models felt like I was perching on top of the bike). I don't have any input on those specific bikes you mentioned, but standover is always an issue with bikes that don't have a dropped top tube (ie. most hardtails) so sitting on them is going to be crucial. That said, if the bike has a dropper then it won't be so much of a problem as she can just drop the saddle when she stops. One crucial thing is getting a fork that will work for a lighter rider. I did a lot of testing last season and found that a stock Pike was much smoother and more compliant at my weight (115) than a stock Fox 34 or 36. Of course she can pay to get the fork tuned properly for her weight, but if she wants something that will work right away then a Pike is the better option in my opinion.

    Sent from my SM-T800 using Tapatalk
    Ride like a girl! :cornut:

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    37
    Quote Originally Posted by mahgnillig View Post
    If I was choosing a bike for a beginner rider I'd definitely be looking at a plus bike... having 3" tyres is a real confidence booster, especially if they're set up tubeless and run at super low pressure. At her height, she'll need an XS (I'm 5'2.5" and was on the borderline between XS and small in brands that offered both, went with small in the end as the XS models felt like I was perching on top of the bike). I don't have any input on those specific bikes you mentioned, but standover is always an issue with bikes that don't have a dropped top tube (ie. most hardtails) so sitting on them is going to be crucial. That said, if the bike has a dropper then it won't be so much of a problem as she can just drop the saddle when she stops. One crucial thing is getting a fork that will work for a lighter rider. I did a lot of testing last season and found that a stock Pike was much smoother and more compliant at my weight (115) than a stock Fox 34 or 36. Of course she can pay to get the fork tuned properly for her weight, but if she wants something that will work right away then a Pike is the better option in my opinion.

    Sent from my SM-T800 using Tapatalk
    Hello All,

    Thank you so much for your input thus far please keep it coming. Regarding a dropper post. This was becoming a real issue as "most" of the bikes had enough room for 3-4 inches of seat post sticking out of the frame. A standard dropper on most of the bikes at it's lowest dropped position and maximum insert would be okay, but if she raised it or opened it up then she wouldn't be able to reach the pedals. In that situation we would swap the dropper for a rigid post. Also thank you for the frame suggestions on XS vs S and the suggestion of a pike vs fox 34. I have a new pike on my Santa Cruz Tallboy custom build and I love it. The Kona that we had looked at for her had a Yari (which I call the cousin of the Pike) on it where the SC had a Fox, and the Trek has a Reba. Agree that a three inch tire would be great for confidence, just a matter of finding the right frame to fit.

  9. #9
    L1MEY
    Reputation: mahgnillig's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,487
    I think Norco makes an XS plus bike that might be worth checking out.

    Sent from my SM-T800 using Tapatalk
    Ride like a girl! :cornut:

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mLeier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    371
    Yes, with regards to dropper posts, my post is down as far as it can go and I cannot extend the dropper fully and still be able to reach the pedals comfortably. I don't find it that annoying to not let it extend fully though, even for quick changes on the fly. It's easy enough to get it to a comfortable height.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    2
    ---
    Last edited by FranklinG; 05-06-2018 at 11:52 PM.

Similar Threads

  1. Foot Pain: Ball of Foot
    By thepedalingfool in forum Singlespeed
    Replies: 46
    Last Post: 10-16-2019, 04:46 PM
  2. Right foot or Left foot forward when in attack position
    By horriefic in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 54
    Last Post: 06-17-2017, 10:58 PM
  3. Replies: 7
    Last Post: 08-12-2016, 10:45 AM
  4. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 05-25-2016, 02:39 PM
  5. Recommended/Non-Recommended Tires for Clydes
    By SeaHag in forum Clydesdales/Tall Riders
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 06-05-2015, 11:42 PM

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.