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The 'Great Bicycle Shortage' is over, but prices are still up

Bikes shops finally restocking after a 2-year shortage
REI Black Friday
Posted at 6:00 AM, May 25, 2022

The good news is that the "Great Bicycle Shortage" of 2021 is finally over.

The bad news, just like with everything else, you'll have to pay more in 2022.

Lori Van Maluka remembers the bike shortage too well.

One year ago, bike shops were empty, and she had no other choice but to buy used.

She is now trying to fix the older bike she bought last year.

"It was really hard to find a bike," she said. "All the bike stores were out of stock, so my husband found one on Facebook."

But fast forward one year, and the pandemic bike shortage is finally coming to an end, according to Jason Reser, owner of Reser Bicycle Outfitters in Newport, KY.

"A year ago, we were experiencing big supply chain disruptions that slowed our ability to get a lot of bikes," Reser said.

One year ago, their racks were empty. You’d be lucky to find any bicycle to buy.

Now though, you can choose any type of bike you want except those inexpensive bikes that manufacturers just don’t make money selling anymore.

"Now it's more like $150 or $200 for that same quality," Reser said, "so they have jumped in price."

But despite the price hikes, many parents are now heading out to buy bikes for their children.

How to choose the right kids' bike

So, if you decide to buy, how do you ensure you purchase the right size?

Chris Winn manages a bike education program for the organization Bicycle Colorado.

"We know that kids grow fast," he said, "but we want them to have an enjoyable and comfortable experience on the bike that they do have."

Winn says before making a purchase, make sure the frame size is correct.

"We want kids to be able to stand over that frame and have their feet flat on the floor," he explained.

He cautions that a bike is too big, "it can be a little bit cumbersome. And hard to handle for that kid."

Finally, he says don't forget to buy a properly fitted helmet using the two-finger rule.

"That means you can fit two fingers above the eyebrows and the top of the helmet," he said, "and two fingers underneath that chin strap."

Ensuring a bike is the proper fit guarantees that the cycle will be out on the pavement and not sitting in your garage.

That way, you don't waste your money.
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