You can buy bikes with or without suspension and both will get you from A to B quite happily, so why opt for one that has suspension when it will likely cost you more money? If you’re already a mountain biker you will know why mountain bike suspension is so important. It helps to absorb the shocks you will feel as you go over rough ground and will give you a smoother ride as a result. Try riding a bike that comes equipped with suspension and then go back to a bike that doesn’t. You’ll soon see the benefits!
Mountain bikes fall into several categories. At the cheapest end of the market you’ll find the heavy framed bikes that have no suspension. Then you’ve got the bikes which have suspension on the front only, or a full suspension system which is designed to absorb shocks through both the front and rear wheels. But if you look at a professional high end model mountain bike, you’ll see that it normally has only front end mountain bike suspension. This may seem strange at first. After all, if you have mountain bike suspension on the front and rear wheels, surely you will get a smoother ride?
In truth you will, but the difference in the ride isn’t as noticeable as the difference in energy you will use up riding it. Mountain bike suspension on the front wheel will absorb most of the jolts and bumps you’ll feel when flying down a steep dusty hill filled with potholes and cracks. When you are cycling on the flat however, and relying on pedal power to get yourself further along your route, you’ll perform much better and go much faster without rear suspension to hinder you.
This is because a lot of the energy you are putting into pedalling is absorbed by the rear suspension. In essence you have to pedal faster and use up more energy to cover the same distance you would on a bike which just has front suspension.
Look for a good mountain bike suspension system when you are buying a new bike. Instead of spending money on a so called dual suspension bike, pour that same cash into a bike which has a better front suspension system. Mountain biking is a much loved, fast and frenetic sport which can be enjoyed by people of all ages. But you’ll enjoy it even more if your energy isn’t wasted on riding a bike that isn’t up to scratch.