Choosing new Handlebars for BMX can be difficult with so many options. It really doesn't need to be though! They are such an important part of your bike that can greatly affect how it feels to ride so read our guide below to understand more about the options available.
4 Piece BMX bars. What's the difference between 2 piece and 4 piece bars?
There are two main types of handlebars for BMX: 4 piece bars and 2 piece bars, which refer to how many separate pieces of tubing are welded together to make the bars. Both styles are equally strong and the choice between them is purely based on personal preference.
What size BMX handlebars do i need?
When it comes to choosing handlebars, the main factor is the height. This is the measurement from the center of the tube where your stem clamps to the center of the tube at the highest point. Most BMX handlebars are typically available in quarter-inch increments and generally riders will choose something between a 8.5" and 10" bmx handlebar. Sizes are available outside the typical range such as smaller 8” BMX bars and 10 inch bmx handlebars used to rare, but bigger bars are now being ridden by more professional BMX riders leading to sizes getting even bigger such as 11” BMX handlebars. While height is important, personal preference is even more important, especially for young riders. We suggest that riders under 1.4 meters choose BMX bars with a rise of 8” or less, while those up to 1.6 meters can go for 8.5” or less. For anyone taller without a preference, we suggest starting at a 9” or 9.25” handlebar.
Wide BMX handlebars
Bar width is another factor to consider, but it may not impact the bars you ultimately choose. Most BMX bars come in widths from 28-30”, but they can be cut down to size to fit the rider. Wider handlebars for BMX bikes provide more control and stability, but having bars that are too wide can have the opposite effect. Personal preference is key here, and youth riders may need to have some width taken off until they feel comfortable.
What is BMX handlebar upsweep and backsweep?
Other bar measurements you may see listed are back sweep and up sweep. Back sweep is the angle at which the bars bend backward from a perpendicular line from the crossbar and is usually between 9-12°. Upsweep is the angle at which the bars bend upward from a horizontal line across the cross and is between 1-5°. If you're new to BMX, these angles won't have a big impact on your choice of bars, but if you've ridden with a particular set of bars before, you'll likely notice the difference if you choose bars with different angles.