Are BMX Bikes Good For Cruising?

Are-BMX-Bikes-good-for-cruising

BMX bikes are great!

If you want a good bike for cruising around on, then steer clear of BMX bikes.

Are BMX bikes good for cruising? No. BMX are not good for cruising, at least if you are cruising for more than an hour or so. These bikes have been designed for one very specific purpose, and cruising is not that purpose.

Let’s take a look at why shall we?

Are BMX Bikes Good for Cruising?

When you say that you are cruising on your bike, we assume that you are just riding the bike around. No tricks or anything. Just riding from Point A to Point B.

It could be a commute to work, or it could just be a general cycle for exercise. It doesn’t matter. This is what we are classing as cruising. Just general cycling.

We are also assuming that when you are cruising on your bike, you really don’t want to be putting a huge amount of effort into it. Even if it is cycling for exercise, the pace is going to be quite leisurely.

With that in mind, we are going to tell you right now that BMX bikes are not good for cruising at all. Not for more than a couple of miles, at least. Certainly not if you want to do it with speed.

? The major issue with BMX bikes is that the seat on them is very low. As you may well know, in order to pedal on your bike, you need to have a decent amount of leg extension.

That is how you get power into the pedals. With a BMX bike, the only way you are getting full power into the pedaling action is if you are standing up on the bike.

You cannot feasibly sit down on one of these and pedal efficiently. If you are standing up, then you are going to be tired out after not too long.

Not to mention the fact that you may end up suffering an injury to your knee.

? Not only this but if your cruising session involves a climb up a hill, then the BMX bike is not going to be able to cope.

The gearing ratio on the bike is going to be all wrong. The bike is far too short. Plus you still have the low seat thing to worry about.

You will get up a hill, but it is going to be an awful, awful experience. It isn’t going to be cruising, it is going to be absolute torture. 

What About BMX Cruiser Bikes?

You would think that a bicycle with the name ‘cruiser’ in the name would be good for cruising, right? Well, no.

BMX cruiser bikes will have slightly larger wheels. They are either going to be 24″ or 26″.

This means that while you may eliminate some of the disadvantages of BMX bikes for longer rides, you are still going to have those inherent disadvantages such as a lower seat and the frame being a little bit shorter.

BMX cruiser bikes really exist because they are brilliant at jumping and rolling. They aren’t really built to be agile and to move around a track, but more as a proper stunt bike.

Are There Times BMX Bikes Are Great for Cruising?

For shorter distances, we see no reason why a BMX bike wouldn’t be good for cruising.

It probably isn’t going to be as decent as another type of bike, but it will certainly get you from point A to point B. That much is certain.

The only time we would really recommend that you cruise about on a BMX bike is if you are dealing with trickier terrain, or there may be some ‘jumps’ along the way.

Although, at that point, you probably aren’t even cruising anymore. You are just doing the ‘fun’ part of riding a BMX bike.

Can You Convert BMX Bikes for Cruising?

Sort-of. However, probably not to the point where you would be happy to be cruising around on the BMX bike for long periods of time.

Let’s take the BMX cruiser bikes, for instance. This is a brilliant start because they have larger wheels.

This means that your pedaling is instantly going to be more efficient.

So, if you do want a BMX bike that could possibly cruise for long periods of time, then these are the type of bike that you will want to be starting with.

You still have the frame problem and the seat problem to correct, though.

The frame problem cannot be fixed. We don’t think the technology is there for you to increase the length of your BMX frame.

You may find that some BMX cruiser bikes will have slightly longer frames than their smaller counterparts, but they aren’t going to be as long as a bike that has actually been built for cruising.

So, if you are serious about cruising, then you probably wouldn’t be buying a BMX bike anyway.

The seat problem can be dealt with:

? One thing we didn’t mention before is that BMX bikes have uncomfortable seats. This is because they are not designed to be sat on for long periods of time.

This means that if you want to be riding a BMX bike for greater distances while cruising then you will need to get yourself a padded seat.

You can either swap out the seat or just buy a quality seat cover online or from your local bike store.

? The second issue with the seat is that it is going to sit low. The best you can really do here is raise it as much as possible.

It won’t be as high as with a normal bike, but that is fine. You will at least be able to stretch your legs a little bit better while sitting.

This means that if you do need a break from all of that pedaling you have had to do standing up, then you can just sit down for a little bit.

? Finally, you may find that some BMX bikes on the market have a brake only on the front wheel. This isn’t something that you see on BMX cruiser bikes as much, but you may still need to check.

This is all down to the way that they have been designed to be ridden. In the interest of safety, you will need to install a U-brake on the back wheel. This should be a fairly simple job.

Once you have done all of that, then your BMX bike is going to feel a little bit more comfortable when you are cruising around.

It isn’t going to be perfect, but you are never going to be able to get a bike like this absolutely perfect. 

Conclusion

While you can probably cruise on a BMX bike, if you have any love for your knees, then you wouldn’t want to! It is just too difficult to ride a bike like this for anything outside of stunts, and maybe a small amount of racing around a BMX track.

If you are really looking to cruise about on a bike, then you seriously need to be investing in something other than a BMX.

Although, if you do already own one, there are limited numbers of conversions that you can do to make it perform the job a little better.

References

https://www.bikeforums.net/bmx/1059757-bmx-bike-cruising-around.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BMX_racing#Bikes_sizes

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John Muranko

John is Founder and Senior Bike Editor at ProBikeCorner. John is a bike and travel addict who has cycled through 17+ countries and doesn't really have any plans of stopping. He´s passionate about helping others by creating technical resources, in-depth reviews and more…

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