Why Are BMX Bikes So Small? 5 Reasons Explained!

Why Are BMX Bikes So Small? 5 Reasons Explained!
Why Are BMX Bikes So Small? 5 Reasons Explained!

Are you considering buying your next bicycle but all that flies around you is a BMX bike? You continue your search but think, why are BMX bikes small?

BMX bikes are compact because they come with tiny wheels and sprockets that are compact with smaller cranks and low seating and were initially intended for kids. The smaller size reduces the bike’s overall weight, making them ideal for use in tricks and stunts.

The small size BMX bikes have several benefits that we’ll review in the future. This article will discuss the reasons BMX bikes are small and provide you with the sizing guidelines to follow when purchasing that new BMX bike.

As a bonus, I will also address some questions regarding the topic.

Let’s get started!

Five reasons why BMX Bikes are so small

Below are five reasons BMX bikes aren’t big enough:

They have small Wheels

BBM bikes do have smaller wheels. They can behave and have wheels as small as 16 inches. But, the most popular BMX bike is available with 20-inch wheels. This is the standard and primary reason BMX bikes are small.

Although they might look strange even if you’re a tall adult, The smaller size of their wheels has the following advantages:

  • Speed and acceleration are enhanced due to weight reduction
  • Easier to maneuver
  • More portable

They have small sprockets

BMX bikes are equipped with small, compact sprockets that offer several advantages. They are:

  • The chain isn’t likely to break easily.
  • The bike is stronger and is less bendable

This means you’re within the realm of performance. Smaller sprockets carry less weight, so you’ll have a lighter bike. This is a benefit in performing techniques.

They have small cranks.

Typically, BMX bikes come with a shorter length of cranks, approximately 145mm to around 190mm. But most freestyle riders would prefer a crank that is 165mm or less.

The more compact your crank is, the higher the clearance to ground, which can come in handy when doing tricks. In addition, the shorter cranks can also result in an easier bike and ensure that the pedals will be more close to the center of the bike, and you’ll be able to spot the pedals easily while thumping.

Short cranks are great for riding on flat land and are typical for racing BMX. They allow you to race BMX more quickly.

They have low seats.

As you are aware, BMX bikes come with low seats, which makes them smaller. However, the seat’s low position allows for better clearance and agility when performing tricks and stunts.

The lower seats make standing while pedaling much more accessible and let you quickly reach and grab the chair using your legs while performing the trick.

Was it First Designed to be used by children?

At first, BMX bikes were meant for children in the 6-17 age group. But they gradually became popular, and growing interest from adults. Their bikes, however, haven’t evolved significantly, so the bikes are small. This is the primary reason why BMX bikes are small.

Another thing to note is that BMX bikes have smaller components than other bikes. This makes them more suitable for children as they are easy to move and manage.

The positive side is that the maker has begun to produce a variety of frames and wheels that can meet the needs of adults.

They also give the flexibility to customize the product to suit your specific needs, particularly when you’re tall.

Benefits of BMX Bikes Being small

Here are some benefits of the smaller BMX size:

They are Lightweight

You’ll often see BMX bikes weighing 10 and 28 pounds, which is why they are light. Their light weight is because they do not have many moving parts, unlike other types of bikes.

The lower weight of the bike can help you navigate and control the bicycle. They are usually light and well-built, allowing you to do tricks and stunts easily.

They typically have Chromoly steel or aluminum frames. The aluminum frames are lighter, whereas the steel options weigh a little more.

Performs Well in High-Risk Tricks and Stunts

You can ask Pro BMX riders, and they’ll inform you that the less your bike is, the greater it will fly into the air when performing risky stunts.

In that mind, BMX bicycles excel at jumping higher than other bicycle models, which is why BMX is an Olympic sport.

If you’re searching for a BMX bike that will give you a 360-degree turn or take huge leaps in the air, it is the Mongoose Legion Mag Freestyle BMX will be able to perform admirably.

The 20-inch freestyle BMX comes with a hi-ten steel frame, which makes it sturdy enough for high-risk moves and stunts. It’s an excellent choice for beginners as well as advanced cyclists.

It makes them more mobile.

Traveling with a smaller bike is more convenient than a big one. Right? The BMX bikes permit you to transport them wherever you want since they’re more mobile because of their lightweight.

Due to their compact dimensions, they are less difficult to maneuver and endure the most severe road crashes.

A more agile BMX can provide more ease of movement while making aerial and flatland tricks seamless. It also allows you to turn quickly, particularly on wet ground.

Small Bikes are Speedy

Since BMX bicycles are compact and light, they have smaller wheels and spokes.

This reduces friction more than larger wheels. This is why many Olympic BMX riders use alternatives with smaller wheels.

Also, you’ll require a BMX motorcycle with small wheels for riding in a crowded area. You might need to make quick stops due to its rapid acceleration and power.

What Size are BMX Bikes?

The most important thing to consider when buying any bike is its size. The BMX makers are aware of this, which is why they offer eight sizes of bikes available.

If you’re a young child and are less than 5’4″ inches, it is recommended to select the smallest size BMX within the category of micro, mini expert, or junior and if you are over 5’4″ inches, then you need to look into a pro-sized bike or pro-XL, proXXL, the pro-XXX, or a cruiser BMX.


Here’s a table summary that you can use when buying a BMX bike:

Bike Size Frame Size (Inches) Wheel Size ( Inches)
Micro 15 – 16¨ 16¨
Mini 16 – 17¨ 18¨
Junior 17 – 18.5¨ 20¨
Expert 18.5 – 19.5¨ 20¨
Pro 20 – 20.5¨ 20¨
Pro XL 20.7 – 21¨ 22¨
Pro XXL 21.5 – 22¨ 24¨
Pro XXX 22¨ 24¨
Cruiser 21.5 – 21.75¨ 24¨

People Also Ask

Are BMX Bikes supposed to be Small?

BMX bicycles were initially made for children, which is why they have smaller angles. With time, they’ve become more popular among adults. But their compact dimensions mean they are more agile, light, and comfortable to ride, which makes them suitable for racing and freestyle.

Why are Olympic Bikes so small?

The reason that Olympic BMX bikes are small is that they allow for larger leaps. As we’ve said before, the shorter the bicycle, the greater the jump. Therefore, Olympic BMX riders understand this, and that’s why they generally choose the smaller BMX alternatives.

In addition, the smaller the bike is, the lighter it is, which can be an advantage after landing one of the biggest jumps.

Are BMX Bikes Still Popular?

BMX has been widespread across the USA and the globe since the 1980s. After its inclusion into the Olympics, BMX sport has never been more well-known than it is today. Race and freestyle BMX sports are prevalent across the globe.

Additionally, BMX bikes are generally priced reasonably, allowing buyers to purchase them. There are many bikes for BMX under 500 dollars (Check for a BMX bike on Amazon). This makes them accessible to the majority of customers and hence becoming popular.

Is 20 BMX too small?

No! The 20 inch BMX bikes fit the standard BMX size. Most users who stand five feet three” inches tall and weigh between 110 and 150 pounds can comfortably ride 20 inches BMX bike. Yet some bikes can be used by adults.

Why are BMX Bikes so expensive?

BMX bicycles are not costly, as you can find most options for less than $500. However, some top-of-the-line options cost a lot due to their quality of construction. Manufacturers invest in top-of-the-line specifications and the latest technologies, making the bikes pricey.

Additionally, BMX bikes are built with high responsiveness. They can endure rough use and are light. They are also priced accordingly.

What is BMX mean?

BMX is a shorter form of Bicycle Motocross. In reality, BMX is an Olympic cycling sport. We have freestyle BMX, in which riders do extreme jumps and stunts, and racing BMX, in which riders race on dirt tracks and track pathways.

Why are BMX bikes so small? Ending Remarks!

Here you go! The factors that make BMX bikes tiny. They are small due to their smaller wheels, shorter cranks, and sprockets. They also have lower seats. They were initially designed for children.

But don’t be deceived by their tiny sizes. You will indeed find the adult BMX bike that will suit your needs.

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