If you’ve decided it’s time to invest in a recumbent trike, you want to take your time and find the best trike for you. This is an investment that should provide you with years of enjoyment and many health benefits. Therefore, you want to avoid just focusing on price. The most expensive trike could have too many features you don’t need so the cheapest model might be perfectly fine, and vice versa.
The last thing you want is to invest the money in an adult trike that you end up not enjoying, or worse have it sit around and gather dust in your garage. Here we offer simple tips to help you choose the best recumbent trike for your needs.
Consider Why You Want a Recumbent Trike
This is the most important question. For example, some people love having the latest thing and purchase a recumbent trike just because their budget allows. Others can no longer cycle due to issues with joint or back pain, and still others are less confident out cycling so want something more stable. You might also find you can’t cycle as far as you used to. All these factors impact the types of recumbent trike features you need for the safest and most enjoyable ride.
Where Will I Ride?
Where you ride is important because it contributes to the features you’ll need. For example, if you just ride to and from work or take short rides for exercise, storage for things like food, water or weather gear isn’t a major consideration. If you ride to work along busier roads, you might want more power to keep up with local traffic. On the other hand, long trips not only call for more storage but also a more comfortable seat.
If you love more challenging trails, safety and stability become far more important. Not all 3 wheel bikes will allow you to hit the challenging trails or high hills, so you might want to consider a motor for example. Wheel size also impacts the trike’s ability to handle the roads or trails where you ride. Small wheels make it difficult to hit the dirt or gravel trails, while large wheels aren’t as practical if you need to transport your trike to your favorite trails.
What Do I Plan To Do In The Future?
You’ll want your trike to adapt to changes in your lifestyle so you don’t have to invest in a new trike down the road. If you choose a trike that meets your general needs, you might find in a few years the trike no longer suits your life. For example, you might have more time when you retire, so you start taking longer trips.
In this case, it would help to have a motor. While you might not think you need a motor today, changes to your life might make a motor far more desirable. You can travel further, but also apply less effort if you find you’re slowing down more easily. You might even want to join a trike or cycling club and find you can’t keep up with the group.
How Does the Adult Tricycle Feel?
You never want to buy a bike of any kind without spending some serious time testing out how it feels. How is it on the road? Is the seat in a position that will work for longer distances? Can you get in and out of the trike without too much trouble? When you’re seated in the trike does it feel too low to the ground? Do you feel vulnerable alongside other bikes or passing traffic? Can you keep a pace you usually would need when out cycling? Do you feel in control when you take a turn at higher speeds?
If you like to go faster and travel trails with twists and turns, then a lower model is better. However, if getting down low is not possible, and you stick to basic trails in your area, then a higher seat is safer and easier to get in and out of.
The topic of suspension takes us back to the types of surfaces you’ll ride on. Although the seat of the recumbent trike helps take the load when riding on a paved, smooth surface, it doesn’t do much when on rough terrain, or hitting a bump in the road. So, if you plan to ride the rougher trails, be sure the suspension of your trike is up to the challenge. Keep in mind suspension systems add to the cost and the list of things that can wrong with your trike. Therefore, quality suspension is not only more expensive at the time of the purchase, but also for future maintenance and repairs.
Transporting Your Trike
If you only plan to ride your trike directly from your home, transporting your trike is not an issue. Because trikes are wider and longer than a traditional bike, if you plan to travel with your trike to your destination, then you’ll need to make sure it will fit in your vehicle. Some will fit on a trike rack for cars or trucks, while others can slide into an SUV or hatchback.
If you travel with a friend or partner, you’ll need space enough for both trikes. If you have a smaller vehicle or transport more than one trike, you might consider getting folding trikes. Another consideration when it comes to transporting your trike is the weight. Are you able to lift your trike into your vehicle or onto the rack
There are so many recumbent trikes to choose from which can be a little overwhelming when you start shopping. Hopefully, this list will make it easier. We’re also here to answer your questions and help you find the perfect trike.