Bikes for short people

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6 replies [Last post]
Anonymous's picture

"I know that there have been posts about this before, but I can't seem to find them.
I'm a short (5'3"") woman, interested in getting my first road bike. I'm carrying some extra weight, and want a bike that will support me. I also want it to be able to withstand city riding and city streets, and still give me as many possible benefits of a road bike. I've been riding a makeshift hybrid for the last 6 years (mountain bike adapted with slick tires).
The Bianchi Volpe appeals to me, but I'm not sure that even their smallest size will fit me.
All suggestions appreciated. Thanks."

Anonymous's picture
Andy (not verified)
There are more and more out there.


I've seen that Specialized now offers XS in their bikes. They have a couple designed specifically for women:

They have a Dolce (mid-range) and a Ruby (top-range) built for women's geometries and others with small sizes (like XS). All have various pricing/component options. They make fine and attractive bikes. Check 'em out.

A Giant OCR/TCR may fit as well; you'd have to swap out the stem for a shorter one and possibly the bars for ones with shorter reach, but any shop would be willing to do this at little if any additional charge. Nonetheless, bike fit is CRITICAL and makes all the difference in the world. If the bike doesn't fit, you may be in for pains here or there. Don't settle for a too-big bike. The Specializeds should fit you very nicely. Best of luck.

Anonymous's picture
another short person (not verified)

you may want to try a womens specific road bike. Im 5'3"" and ride the Bella by Litespeed. Trek also makes womens specific frames."

Anonymous's picture
Neile (not verified)
Surly Long Haul Trucker


Saw one of these on the street the other day and it looked SWEET.

Similar to the Volpe. Strong steel frame, with plenty of clearance and ""braze-ons"" to accommodate wider tires, fender, racks, etc. -- so the commuting chores will be handled with ease.

The LHT comes in small sizes (as low as 42CM with a 27.7"" standover) and uses 26"" (559mm radius) wheels rather than the 650c (571mm radius) typically used on women's road bikes -- so you have a lot more options in rims/tires to go fast or go strong.

If it were my only bike, I'd get two sets of wheels; one for commuting/touring and a fast set (sans rack/fenders) for club rides.

Figure $400 for the frame, then you have the shop accessorize it.

Admit it, wouldn't you like telling your Colnago-Lightspeed-Sachs riding friends that you're showing up with a Long Haul Trucker?"

Anonymous's picture
<a href="">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
Dahon HammerHead 'Mini Bike'

"Dahon is coming out with a new series of bikes in 2006 for designed short riders.

Here's a brief link to an article:


Anonymous's picture
Eric Faber (not verified)
Road bike for a short person

"I'm 5'4"" and I have a Giant Aluminum OCR 3 frame. The bike in ""small"" is very adjustable to your needs and is the best bang for the buck hands down."

Anonymous's picture
Christian Edstrom (not verified)

"This thread has some good info:

Basically, at 5'3"" to get a good fitting and _handling_ bike, you'll need 650c (571mm radius) wheels.

Also the OCR's have very steep seattubes and subsequent long effective reach in small sizes. I definitely recommend a very thorough fitting if that bike is of interest.

- Christian"

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