You might have heard that fixed gear bikes are “the” bike to ride, but you’re not sure why. I mean, don’t get me wrong, they look cool and all. But what’s the real reason people say a fixed gear is better?
What is a fixed gear bicycle?
Before we discuss the upsides, and of course the few downsides of a fixed gear bicycle, we should quickly discuss what a fixed gear cycle is! A fixed gear cycle (aka fixie) is a bike with no derailleur, and thus no freewheel (which is different from a single speed). This means that when the bike is in motion, the pedals are always in motion too. There is a direct relationship between your cadence and the speed of the bike.
The fixed gear bicycle originated from track racing, where the rider would use a fixed gear to ride around a velodrome. These days, people use fixed-gear bikes for all sorts of riding, from commuting to fixed-gear tricks.
1. Flips and bunny hops are easier
A fixed-gear bicycle has no freewheel, which means you can do more tricks. You can bunny hop, flip, and do wheelies. You can also do a lot of other tricks that are harder to do on a regular bike.
Trading freewheel for fixed gear is easier once you learn how to ride a bicycle. You can get a fixed-gear bike with no brakes. Once you master riding it and the tricks, you’ll have more fun on your bike. A fixed-gear bike is also lighter than other bikes because there are fewer parts on the frame.
2. They look cool
Fixed gear bicycles have a classic style (like this one) that is a statement of individuality. It’s an easy way to show off your personality and distinguish yourself from others.
Fixed gear bikes have been around for a long time, so they’re well-established as an iconic piece of street fashion. You can pick one up at any time and know that it’ll look great in your living room or out on the road!
3. Traffic filtering is easier
When you ride a fixed-gear bike, you can filter through traffic much more easily. You can move in and out of traffic with ease.
This makes it easier for you to weave through cars or change lanes when necessary. You can also ride in a more relaxed manner since you don’t have to worry about shifting gears.
This makes fixed-gear bikes a great option for those who commute by bike or who want to be able to move around quickly and easily on their bike.
What are some downsides to a fixie?
No coasting, ever
You can’t coast on a fixed-gear bicycle. You have to pedal to slow down, even when going up a hill or riding through windy conditions.
This means that you have to be more careful about your speed when riding on slippery surfaces or in high winds. If you are not used to not being able to coast, it may take some time before you get used to it; don’t let this discourage you from trying out this type of bike!
A fixed-gear bicycle is also different from other bikes because when going down hills, there is no way for you (or anyone else) to take advantage of gravity by “coasting” downward at a fast speed without pedaling at all like we can with other types of bicycles such as mountain bikes and hybrid cruisers/comfort bikes.
You need to be aware of your surroundings
The first thing you need to know is that you are the bike. You have to be aware of your speed, your surroundings and conditions, and the road surface. This can sound daunting but is a great way to practice mindfulness on a bike!
There are no brakes on a fixed-gear bicycle. This means that everything must be done by pedaling backward: if you want to slow down or stop, you need to increase resistance by pedaling backward more slowly or pushing down harder with each stroke.
If you want to go faster or start climbing a hill without losing speed, then your cadence must stay consistent so that there aren’t any jerky movements when changing gears (or lack thereof).
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Fixed gear bikes are fun but you need to be careful with the brakes!
Fixed gear bikes are a lot of fun, but they require a little more attention than other kinds of bikes. You can’t coast, so when you want to slow down or stop you have to do it by pedaling backward.
This can be tricky on steep hills and when turning. It’s important to practice riding your fixed-gear bike before going on any long rides or taking it out in traffic where there are lots of cars around (especially if you’re new to fixed gears).
You’ll also need to be careful about how much weight you put on the front wheel when going downhill or around corners because that’s where most accidents happen with fixed-gear riders.
Are BMX bikes fixed gear?
BMX bikes like this one are one of the most popular styles of fixed gear bicycles, but they’re not the only kind. You can find fixed gear bikes in all sorts of different styles, from racing bikes to cruiser bikes.
These bicycles (as mentioned earlier in this article) are great for tricks, which is perfect for riders that would opt for a BMX bike. While you may not be able to get a ton of speed, or be able to go off-road, a BMX bike’s geometry and ability to do tricks due to its fixed gear build is perfect.
Okay, so now you know why fixed gear bikes are awesome. They’re the best way to get around town, they look cool and they make riding feel like a challenge.
But you should be careful with the brakes! If you want to learn more about how to ride a fixie or where to buy one, there are lots of resources out there that can help. Just make sure you do your research before diving in. Thanks for reading!