If you are used to riding frequently, a mountain bike will be a good investment. However, there are different models of mountain bikes available on the market and you need to consider several factors before selecting the right one.
You first need to consider your riding style
Think about the majority of the riding terrains you are accustomed to in your area or whether you are used to biking when you go camping or hiking. These can be two very different terrains. You need to select a bike out of the categories of trail riding, all mountain and cross-country. Some people cycle for leisure while others take it up as a competitive sport. If you are used to cross-country riding, you will be going on mostly smooth trails with a few obstacles in the way.
You will be able to ride faster on these types of trails. It gets a little bit more challenging when it comes to trail riding as you will need to ride on a trail with tree roots, rocks and changing slopes. Advanced riders tend to choose all-mountain riding where the ride is a lot more challenging with steep slopes and hills with ever-changing terrain. Therefore, the bike you select should be compatible with the terrain you are riding on.
There are many shops where you can find mountain bikes for sale but you should have a good idea of the specific features of the bike you are looking for. For example, the wheel size is one of the features you should decide on. Generally, a smaller wheel that has a 26” diameter has a higher degree of maneuverability. With larger wheel sizes, you can priorities on speed and stability. This would be a wheel with a 29” diameter. Then there are wheel sizes in between the two that will give you a mix of these features.
The comfort of the ride depends largely on the suspension of the bike. You will come across two suspension types which are full suspension and hard-tail bikes. The latter is a good option for cross country riding but if you are choosing a challenging terrain, and then it is best to purchase a full suspension bike that can absorb the majority of the shocks from the terrain.
Consider the material of the frame
Some of the materials you will see advertised are titanium, aluminum and carbon fiber. If you are looking for an affordable mountain bike, aluminum frame is a good choice and you will also be able to have a lightweight and durable bike. These are mostly recommended for beginners. High performance bikes have frames of carbon fiber and titanium with the latter being the most durable and expensive.
Carbon fiber is also a good choice as it is lighter than aluminum with more stiffness. Think about what kind of budget you are comfortable with as well. There is a large range of available prices and this is affected by the quality of the materials and components used in the bike. You have to consider the frequency of use along with the terrain you are used to when making the final choice.