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Bikes with adjustable handlebars to match smaller frames (especially for women)

Michaela D
Michaela D Oct 08, 2021
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The handlebar is one of the bike parts that cannot be adjusted, even though shoulder width varies significantly between people. Narrow handlebars are better for speed and agility (mainly for road bikes) whereas wider handlebars are better for control and stability (mainly for mountain bikes).

Ideal narrow bars are considered 38-46cm and ideal wider handlebars 74-76cm. This is perfect for the male anatomy, with the average shoulder width being between 39-41 cm. However, the average shoulder width of a woman is 35-36cm. This means that an average woman (not a professional rider) uses handlebars too wide for her. As a result, there is a loss of speed, agility and comfort.

In order to accommodate for female anatomy as well as varied male anatomy, handlebars could have adjustable width the way the bike seats have an adjustable height.
Creative contributions

A DIY solution

Darko Savic
Darko Savic Oct 08, 2021
If you just wanted to solve the problem for yourself, you could buy some cool grips online, then cut off the existing grips. Use a metal saw to cut off the excess handlebar on each side, and glue on the new grips.

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Michaela D
Michaela Da year ago
This is a cool idea especially if the gear shifters are not blocking the grips. Another DIY solution is to change the whole handle bar for a more narrow one.
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General comments

Darko Savic
Darko Savica year ago
The narrower the grip, the more difficult it is to pivot the front wheel because the leverage is reduced. Does that play a role in the above problem?
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Michaela D
Michaela Da year ago
The leverage is reduced but unless there is a lot of weight I don't think it would make much of a difference for everyday biking. For stability, a wider grip is better, but even in this case, it needs to be proportional to someone's body. With many standard city bikes, I have noticed my ideal relaxed hand position is half on the gear shifter and half on the handle. And my frame is not on the narrow side for a woman! That's why I think it would be great if the handle bar could be adjusted based on the body and the use of the bike.
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