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Want to get into cycling? We help you pick a bike to suit your needs

Walk into a bike shop and you’ll be faced with row after row of shiny models. Where to start? We asked Halford’s cycling expert Natasha Chauhan to help narrow it down.

Which style?

For commuters

A hybrid is a good everyday option for practical uses, such as commuting. It combines the speed of a road bike with the sturdiness of a mountain bike and is upright, to give you a good view of the road. Hybrids have multipurpose tyres so are as good on roads as they are on trails and paths.
Look at the Boardman Hybrid Women’s, £429.99

For convenience

If you just want to cycle to the train station, or don’t have anywhere to lock up your bike at work, consider a folding bike, which you can carry on public transport and stash under your desk.
Look at the Carrera Intercity Folding Bike, £349.99

For traditionalists

Dutch-style bikes have a low crossbar, high handlebars and front basket
Look at the Pendleton Somerby, £249.99

For speed

Racers, or road bikes, are engineered for speed and distance with its light frame, thin wheels and dropped handlebars
Look at the Boardman Road Team Carbon FI, £999.99

Buying tips

Choose your frame

A female-specific bike frame is a good idea for women planning to cycle regularly, as the geometry (dropped crossbar, shorter frame, narrower handlebars) makes it more efficient. You’ll also get a more comfortable saddle – wider at the back and narrower at the front to accommodate female bone structure.

Get it fitted

Fit is vital or you won’t feel comfortable riding. Any good shop should have trained specialists to help you find the right frame for you. Ask to sit on a bike or have a test ride, to see how it feels. The position of the handlebars, brake levers, saddle height and tilt can be adjusted to suit you.

What to pay

You can pay as little as £100 or more than £5,000. As a guide, £150 to £250 will buy a good starter bike for weekenders or part-time commuters. For more regular use, look to spend in the region of £250 to £1,000.

Something cheaper?

Why not consider a second-hand bike, while you’re getting started? Check Gumtree and eBay for bargains. And find out if your employer is signed up to a cycle-to-work scheme, which will get you a discount of around 40% on a new bike and equipment. READ how the scheme works

Need advice on kit? READ Essential cycling kit