How to Measure a Mountain Bike

How to Measure a Mountain Bike
A properly fitted mountain bike is a comfortable mountain bike that you will enjoy riding for hours. Measuring a bike to fit the rider only takes a few minutes, but makes all the difference in purchasing and adjusting a bicycle that will either delight the rider or cause miserable discomfort. Follow these steps to measure a mountain bike so you'll enjoy the trails.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Flexible tape measure
Step 1
Stand by the side of the bike and place the top of the tape measure against the tube that holds the seat post. Hold the tape measure against the tube, not the seat or the post beneath it.
Step 2
Extend the tape measure straight down to the mountain bike's bottom bracket, which is the sprocket axle holding the bicycle pedals on either side.
Step 3
Note the distance between the seat tube and the bottom bracket in inches. This is the measurement of the mountain bike frame.
Step 4
Determine the correct mountain bike frame size by measuring your inseam.
Step 5
Multiply your inseam by 0.66 to determine the right size mountain bike frame for your height. For example, if your inseam is 35 inches (making you about 6-feet 1-inch tall), you'll need a mountain bike frame 23 to 24 inches tall.
Step 6
Adjust the seat on your mountain bike up or down for a precise fit. There is no need to worry if your inseam measurement does not translate into a perfect match for the available frame sizes of mountain bikes on the market.

Article Written By James Clark

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.

Keep Me Informed

Weekly newsletters, announcements and offers from to your inbox.

Sign me up!

We HATE spam and promise to keep your email addresses safe and secure.