Sooo, I’ve been seeing a lot of debate about using a BMX for commuting.
I get it, you’re all hyped up to ride as much as possible, so you want to go with your BMX EVERYWHERE.
Going to school once or twice, going to work once or twice, even going to coffee once or twice might be exciting.
However, when you do it daily, and if it’s for longer distances, here’s the brutal truth: You’ll hate it.
This post covers:
- Are BMX Bikes Good For Commuting?
- Cons Of Using A BMX Bike For Commuting
- Pros Of Using A BMX Bike For Commuting
- Best BMX Alternative For Commuting
Note: Do you know what does BMX stand for?
Are BMX Bikes Good For Commuting?
No matter how much you enjoy riding BMX, it’s just not the right bike for commuting. Period.
You might use it for one or max two miles, but anything longer, it’s a no-no.
Don’t believe me? Well, try it and you’ll see for yourself.
Sure, a BMX bike is extremely durable, but pedaling for twenty minutes or half an hour, heck, even longer, is tiresome.
Remember, a BMX bike only has one gear.
Moreover, the seat is also very low, so it doesn’t feel comfortable at all. Unless you have the 320mm longer S&M Long Johnson seat post.
But even then, your legs, your hips and your back will start hurting during a longer commute.
In other words, a BMX doesn’t allow full leg extension, which can work for really short distances but becomes painful for longer ones.
I know what you’ll say, “I have strong legs, I’ll stand all the time.” Let me tell you something – no, you won’t.
If you have 15-20 mins to pedal to your local skatepark or street spots, that’s great!
Why? Because you can use this time as an excellent warmup technique.
Cons Of Using A BMX Bike For Commuting
BMX bikes, originally designed for motocross-inspired cycling events, are known for their agility, durability, and compact design.
While these characteristics make BMX bikes suitable for specific riding styles like tricks, jumps, or short-distance cruising, they present several drawbacks when used for daily commuting.
Here are some reasons why a BMX bike may not be the best choice for this purpose:
1. Reduced Comfort
BMX bikes have a compact frame and small wheels, 20 inches in diameter, which leads to a less comfortable ride over long distances.
The seat on most BMX bikes is designed for occasional sitting rather than extended periods of comfort.
As mentioned earlier, sure, you can get a longer seat post, but it still won’t do the trick.
2. Limited Speed
BMX bikes are single-geared and have a low gear ratio.
This configuration limits the bike’s top speed, making it less efficient for covering long distances quickly.
Not to mention, climbing hills is extra challenging. And no, you don’t want to be a leg day every day. (By the way, find out whether BMX is a good exercise or not.)
Many foldable bikes also have a single speed, but the gear ratio is much higher and more versatile.
3. Limited Carrying Capacity
BMX bikes lack the racks, panniers, or other storage options that make commuting easier.
You can do some DIY work on your bike but even then, you won’t be able to store much.
Carrying a backpack for long periods while riding a BMX bike can become uncomfortable and affect your balance.
4. Lack Of Versatility
BMX bikes are optimized for specific types of riding and are less versatile than other types of bikes such as road bikes or hybrid bikes, which can be adapted for various terrains and uses.
5. Safety Concerns
BMX bikes are designed for agility rather than stability, which may make them less safe for navigating through heavy traffic.
Their small size can make them less visible to drivers, and they usually lack features like fenders and lights that can make commuting safer.
6. Inefficient Energy Use
The smaller wheels and lack of multiple gears mean you’ll need to pedal harder and expend more energy to cover the same distance as a road bike.
7. BMX Brakes Aren’t The Safest
While BMX bikes often have robust braking systems suitable for stunts and tricks, these might not offer the progressive and efficient stopping power desirable for commuting, especially in emergency situations and wet weather.
However, you can still get really solid braking, but only when picking an aftermarket braking system.
Stock brakes are usually poor-quality unless they are of a high-end BMX bike.
Pros Of Using A BMX Bike For Commuting
Despite their commuting drawbacks, BMX bikes offer some advantages that could make them a suitable choice for certain types of commuters.
Here’s why a BMX might be good for your commute:
BMX bikes are exceptionally agile, allowing for quick changes in direction and an easier time navigating through traffic, tight spaces, or obstacles on your route.
2. Compact Size
The small frame and wheel size make BMX bikes easy to store and transport.
They are ideal for those with limited storage space at home or work and can be easily carried onto public transportation.
3. Low Maintenance
BMX bikes have a straightforward design, often lacking complex gearing systems.
This simplicity can make them easier and less expensive to maintain.
Here’s how to maintain a BMX bike like a pro.
4. Fun Factor
If you’re looking to add some excitement to your daily commute, the capability of a BMX bike to handle jumps and tricks can make your ride more enjoyable.
Not just that, the more time you spend on your bike, the better because it will help with learning tricks.
5. Community & Culture
Riding a BMX can connect you to a larger community of BMX riders. It provides an identity and a sense of belonging that other types of bikes might not offer.
Best BMX Alternative For Commuting
So, you’re thinking about making your commute a bit more eco-friendly and fun by switching to two wheels, huh?
But if you’ve been pondering the pros and cons of using a BMX for your daily trek to work or school, let me throw another exciting option into the mix: a 20″ foldable bike.
Trust me, this could be the best BMX alternative for commuting, and here’s why:
It’s Super Convenient
Firstly, let’s talk about convenience. One of the best things about a 20″ foldable bike is just how portable it is.
You can easily fold it up and carry it onto a train, bus, or even in the trunk of a car. No need for a bike rack or any other cumbersome equipment.
Speed & Efficiency
If you’re worried about speed—don’t be! Foldable bikes with 20″ wheels offer a pretty smooth and speedy ride.
Unlike a BMX, which usually has a single gear, many foldable bikes come with multiple gears.
That means you can zip through flat roads and tackle those pesky hills without breaking a sweat (well, maybe just a little sweat).
Comfort Is Key
Oh, the comfort! Unlike the BMX, which often sacrifices comfort for performance, foldable bikes are designed for longer, more comfortable rides.
With a more ergonomic design and the option to adjust your saddle and handlebars, your back and wrists will thank you.
A 20″ foldable bike usually comes with or has the option for racks, panniers, and even built-in bags.
You can easily carry your laptop, a change of clothes, or your groceries. Try doing that comfortably on a BMX!
The beauty of a foldable bike is that it’s incredibly versatile.
Whether commuting, going for a leisurely ride, or tackling some light gravel over the weekend, this bike can do it all.
With fewer intricate parts than other geared bikes, foldable bikes can be easier and cheaper to maintain. Plus, you can easily store it indoors, keeping it safe from the elements and potential thieves.
If you’re considering ditching your car or just adding some activity to your daily routine, a 20″ foldable bike is a fantastic, versatile choice that I think you’ll love as much as I do.
And will make you feel way more comfortable than your BMX bike. Hey, you don’t want to arrive tired and sweaty at work or school.
So, we’ve taken a fun ride through the ins and outs of using a BMX for your daily commute.
While it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, there’s no denying the cool factor and maneuverability that a BMX brings to the table.
If you’re all about quick turns, a durable ride, and the freedom to throw in a trick or two on your way to work, then a BMX could add a whole new level of excitement to your commute.
However, if some of the BMX limitations are causing you second thoughts — like the lack of gears for those grueling hills or the absence of storage options — a 20″ foldable bike ticks many commuting-friendly boxes.
Why is this foldable friend a worthy alternative?
Well, it’s compact just like a BMX, but it folds up, making it a breeze to take on public transportation or store in your office.
Plus, it offers a range of gears for more comfortable cruising and climbing, and it usually has plenty of options for attaching bags or baskets.
So, whether you decide to embrace the BMX lifestyle or opt for the foldability and practicality of a folding bike, the most important thing is that you’re getting out there on two wheels.
No matter your choice, you’re doing a solid for your health, your wallet, and even the planet.
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