Are you looking for a new way to enjoy the outdoors and get some exercise? While walking and running have their benefits, they don’t hold up to the joint-preserving yet still heart-healthy effects of cycling.
Electric bikes, even though they do some of the work for you, are just as good for the body as manual bikes. This guide to the best electric bikes for seniors will walk you through the top brands, models, and show you what to look for in an e-bike!
What is an Electric Bike?
Electric bikes are built and appear just like traditional bikes; however, instead of doing all the work of pedaling yourself, electric motors are there to assist you. They shoulder some of the workload for you, allowing you to pedal faster and further with less effort.
There are two types of electric bikes: full electric and electric assist. Electric-assist bicycles have motors that are only engaged when the rider is pedaling. This means that, while you still have to pedal to get anywhere, they have a much longer range and use the batteries more efficiently.
Full-electric bikes don’t require any pedaling; the motors will propel you completely independently. So, though you don’t have to pedal to travel, the bike’s batteries do drain faster. Many full-electric bikes have a function that lets them switch into an electric assist mode, conserving power and range.
Getting an electric bike is a great way to maximize your ability to use a bike for travel, exercise, and recreation. They make riding up hills much easier, and take a lot of the pressure off of your knees. Finally, these bikes, when they include storage baskets, are great for commuting and traveling because you don’t have to pedal the extra weight of whatever you’re storing by yourself.
Electric bikes are growing in popularity because of their convenience and ease of use, but that doesn’t mean that everyone can afford them. The typical cost of an electric bike is about $2,000; some are cheaper, but many are more expensive. The high cost of entry for electric bikes does keep them out of reach for some people, but those who can afford them often find it was worth every penny!
Electric bikes are considered to be a great replacement for a traditional bike for seniors because they promote active lifestyles and are even lighter on the joints.
Pros and Cons of Electric Bike for Seniors
Electric bikes make every push of your foot on the pedal much more efficient. You can ride faster, farther, and get to your destination by expending less energy when using an electric bike.
This advantage is perhaps most noticeable when you need to ride your bike uphill. You can crank up the throttle on the motors and keep your pedaling calm and peaceful while the electric motors do all the work for you. If you live in a hilly area, this is a perk that can’t be ignored.
Most electric bikes have a range of at least 18 miles; you can ride a long, long way before the batteries die. Some models, when in electric-assist mode, can ride more than 50 miles before the batteries die out. Even when you’re exercising, it’s a lot more fun to see how far you can get than it is to turn around simply because you’re tired!
A decent bicycle without electric motors and batteries in it costs less than $500. Paying $500, or even $800, for an electric bike is a recipe for disappointment. You’ll have to spend at least $1,000, if not double, to get yourself a good electric bike. There’s no way around it- electric bikes are expensive!
Putting motors and batteries inside a bicycle makes it heavier; the electrical components of these bikes, combined with the need to use wider frames to hold all the components, makes electric bikes quite heavy.
Best Brands of Electric Bikes
This brand has a great selection of well-priced, stylish and durable electric bikes. Many of their bikes have step-through frames which are great for seniors because they don’t strain the hips. If you’re looking for a city bike with electric power or a true leisurely cruiser, you’ll find it here!
Not a household name by any means, SixThreeZero still has a lot to offer seniors. Their electric bikes are built for performance and are priced very fairly. If you’re looking for a stylish, comfortable bike, this is the place to find it.
The Best Electric Bikes for Seniors in 2021
1. Best Electric Bike for Seniors (Overall): SixThreeZero EvryJourney 500/W
SixThreeZero’s flagship bike, the EvryJourney, has a lot to offer any senior looking for a comfortable, high-quality electric bike. The bike is available in two configurations- one for men, and one for women. It has a range of 40 miles, delivered by efficient 500W motors.
When you’re not using the electric assist, this seven-speed bike is still light enough (70 pounds) to be ridden with just the power of your own legs. The frame and seat are both built in a classic style, built to keep you comfortable even on long rides. The tires are two inches thick and made to handle pavement, light grass, and dirt with ease. No matter where you need to go or how you like to ride, the EvryJourney 500 has both the muscle and grace to handle it.
2. Best 3-Wheel Electric Bike for Seniors: AddMotor M-350-P7 Electric Tricycle
This brand makes rough-and-tumble electric bikes that can go anywhere and handle anything. Three-wheeled bikes aren’t usually known for their versatility or toughness, but the AddMotor M-350-P7 is stronger than most. Three-wheeled bikes are ideal for seniors who have balance issues or who just value the stability and safety that three-wheeled bikes offer.
This bike has a 450-pound weight capacity and two large storage baskets, making it perfect for grocery shopping, commuting, and more. But, we haven’t gotten to the best part of this electric trike for adults. It isn’t the comfortable seat with a backrest, and it isn’t the wide, knobby tires that make riding safe on almost any terrain. No, the best part about the M-350-P7 is that you can ride 55 miles on a single charge!
3. Best Electric Bikes for Urban Seniors: Ancheer 26-Inch Electric City Bike
Riding a bike in the city is a lot different than flat bike paths or riding along country roads. In the city, you have a lot more to worry about than being late for brunch- there are pedestrians, cars, other cyclists, and a myriad of other obstacles. This means your electric bike should be sleek, functional, and come with a great set of breaks!
That’s exactly what you get on this city bike from Ancheer. The front and rear disc brakes help you stop on a dime, as do the easy-to-use electric controls. The bike itself is lightweight, comfortable, and has a rear storage platform to hold your belongings as you ride. If you’re in the market for a great urban electric bike, this one is right for you.
4. Best Folding Electric Bike for Seniors: Macwheel Folding Electric Bike
Weighing in at just under 40 pounds, this electric bike packs a lot of power into a small, folding package. You can ride up to 15 miles per hour and reach a distance of 37 miles on a single charge, more than enough to get from A to B, and back to A.
This bike is also more than affordable; compared to some of the other bikes on our list, it’s practically a bargain considering the performance it delivers. The wheels are designed exclusively for pavement; they’re lightweight and aren’t very large, so it’s best to use this bike only on smooth surfaces. If you need a light, portable electric bike that doesn’t skimp out on range or speed, this model from Macwheel is perfect for you. Whether you’re heading to the grocery store, to a doctor’s appointment, or just to visit a friend, this bike can keep up and keep out of the way.
5. Best Fat Tire Ebike for a Senior Citizen: Rad Power Bikes RadRover Step-Through
Fat tire bikes are great for nearly any situation. Also called “fatbikes”, they use ultra-wide, “go anywhere, do anything” tires that won’t be slowed down by mud, snow, sand, or anything else. The only problem? They’re heavy and bulky, and not usually made with seniors in mind.
The RadRover, however, is perfect for just about any senior because of its powerful motors and step-through frame. The motors can help you tackle any ride imaginable, up to 45 miles per charge, with 7 different gears to help you go as fast or slow as you like. A step-through frame lets you mount the bike without swinging your leg above your hips, lowering the potential of strained muscles and sore hips after riding.
While fatbikes are generally made for rough trails and cross-country cycling (such as this 370-mile ride across Iceland in winter) they can also be used by seniors. If you’re still in half-decent shape and have good balance, you can have a lot of fun- and few worries about getting stranded- with an electric fatbike!
6. Best Step-Through Electric Bicycle for Seniors: Rad Power RadRover City Bike
Step-through frames make it easy to get in and out of the bike because they don’t force your legs into an awkward position that can hurt your hips. This bike from Rad Power has a stylish frame, paint job, and seat that make an already great bike a pleasure to ride.
It’s very similar to the fat tire bike that takes the #5 spot on our list, but it’s designed for the city and suburbs rather than the great open trails. It has a 45-mile range, a rear storage platform, and gears/brakes that’ll help you travel and exercise for years to come. For a truly great step-through electric bike, look no further than the RadRover.
7. Best E-Bike for RV for Seniors: VIVI Folding Electric Bike Electric Mountain Bicycle
If you’re an RVer, you need a bike that is tough enough (and large enough) to be useful at parks and on light trails but still small enough to be packed away for the next destination. The VIVI folding bike is exactly what you’re looking for.
Unfolded, it’s a 26-inch electric mountain bike with the tires, suspension, and power needed to help you ride anywhere you please. In fact, it’s probably more powerful and versatile than you’ll ever need it to be!
The real advantage is what this bike looks like when folded up. It folds up so small that it looks almost mangled as if it were run over by a garbage truck! You can tuck it away anywhere on your RV and it’ll stay right there, out of the way, until you reach your next adventure! For any senior couple with an RV, one or two of these bikes will be more than satisfying, both on the road and off.
FAQs: Electric Bikes for Seniors
Where Can I Find a Senior E-Bike Club Near Me?
Finding a cycling club is easier said than done, unfortunately. While there are a few different ways you can look for them, there is no guarantee that there actually will be a seniors cycling group in your area.
Start your search by checking bulletin boards/asking around at local senior centers, gyms, and bike shops. If there is a group nearby, there’s a chance that someone has posted a flyer there- or at least that a staff member might be able to point you in the right direction. You can also check places like MeetUp and Facebook Groups to see if there are any groups near you.
If there are none? You can start one! Many seniors experience feelings of loneliness; on top of that, people in isolation live shorter lives than those with wide social bonds. Exercise, too, can lengthen your life- even just 11 minutes per day, according to one study. Joining or starting a cycling group in your area is a great way to experience valuable benefits, and have some fun, too!
Are Electric Fat Tire Bikes Safer for Seniors?
Fatbikes are very stable, though they are a bit more difficult to pedal without electric assistance. The wide tires make it easier to stay upright, and they absorb the impacts of rocks and bumps in the road, making them great for seniors. Electric fatbikes are a great idea for any senior who has decent balance and fitness; those with medical concerns or poor balance should seek out a three-wheeled electric bike instead.
What to Look for in an Electric Bike for Seniors
How to Find the Best Price on an Electric Bike for Seniors
Conclusion: Electric Bikes for Seniors
Electric bikes are recommended for seniors because they help them stay active and social. You can find electric bikes in just about every configuration under the sun- mountain bikes, fatbikes, city bikes, and more. Cycling is a wonderful way to stay fit- electric bikes make it even more of a pleasure! Which bike do you think you’ll choose? Let us know in the comments below!