All About 3 Wheel Bicycles ( The Ultimate Guide )

Ultimate Guide to 3 Wheel Bicycles – A Whole New Ride!

3 wheel bicycles also known as a “trike” or “tricycle” is safe to ride ( incredible stability ), convenient, a great learning way ( for kids ) and an effective way to carry cargo. It differ from traditional bicycle in the form of an additional rear wheel.

The cycling community may be mainly taken up by 2 wheel bike riders, but 3 wheel bicycles have more uses than you may imagine. Though they are not necessarily designed for everyone, for leisurely trips into town, 3 wheel bicycles offer an impressive amount of convenience.

Step-through-frames, built-in baskets, and incredible stability make these adult tricycles perfect for quick outings and gentle tours.

3-wheel bikes come in many different forms, from simple cruisers to recumbent-style performance machines to drift tricycles for adrenaline-filled downhill runs.

If you’re worried about keeping your balance on a bike, you want a convenient way to carry cargo, or you just want to try out a new way of getting around, a 3-wheel bike might be for you.

Who Is A Tricycle Appropriate For?

3 Wheel Bicycles Made For Kids

When we think of tricycles, our minds first go to kids. These 3 wheelers are a great way to get children used to being on a bike, but without the instability of learning to ride a 2-wheel bicycle.

Children need help developing their balance and motor skills before they can move onto a 2-wheel bike, so a tricycle is the perfect way to keep them safe and steady.

You’ll also be able to relax more while your kid uses a tricycle.

They can ride independently and start to gain speed without assistance. The seats of children’s 3-wheel bikes often have a back, so you don’t even need to tech your child cycling posture to keep them upright.

Due to their popularity, you should be able to find a 3-wheel bike made for kids at the majority of retailers selling children’s bicycles.

3 Wheel Bicycles Made For Seniors

3 Wheel Bicycles Made For Seniors

Seniors may have trouble with their balance no longer being as good as it once was, so a tricycle offers them much more support than a bike.

A 3-wheel bike designed for an adult will be bigger than a child’s tricycle, but the seat will still be closer to the ground than on a bike, so it is easier to mount.

The feet don’t need to be lifted a lot higher to cycle, so seniors will be able to stretch their legs out a bit more.

Your posture is also more relaxed on a tricycle, making them the perfect choice for anyone who may struggle to retain the upright cycling position for an entire ride.

To purchase a tricycle for adults, you should consult with a bike retailer to see what they offer and then choose the one with the best benefits for you.

3 Wheel Bicycles Made For Carrying Cargo

Finally, 3-wheel bikes are also appropriate if you are looking to carry cargo. 2-wheel bicycles are slim and streamlined, so piling too much weight on them will make riding very difficult.

The extra stability of a tricycle is much more efficient for this purpose.

Cargo bikes” can have 2 wheels as well, but you’ll have better handling of a 3-wheel bike that is transporting goods. They have rear platforms that you can put anything on.

Some people use tricycles to carry cargo, whereas others use the extra space to fit a child’s seat. Whatever you put on the back, you can rest assured that your 3-wheel cargo bike will keep it secured.

These are less commonly found in bike stores, so you’ll have to do some research and find the best cargo-carrying tricycle for you.

The Importance Of 3 Wheel Bicycles


The purpose of the additional wheel is to increase stability. Riding a 2-wheel bicycle can be very difficult at times, even for experienced cyclists.

The lightweight materials and slim wheels are much more easily affected by wind, rain, and uneven terrain. After all, there is a reason that children learn to ride a bike with stabilizer wheels on the back.

It is much easier to navigate the road ahead and focus on your handling when you know the bike is stabilized whether you’re moving or at a stop.

The size of the front wheel evens out with the two smaller rear wheels, so you won’t sway about at all. Even better, the extra wheel makes you feel as if your bike is perfectly balanced, so you can relax as you ride.

Ultimate Guide to 3 Wheel Bicycles - A Whole New Ride!

Cargo Space

One common complaint with a lot of 2-wheel bikes is that they have barely any cargo space at all.

You can have a basket on the front and a rear rack to carry extra items, but otherwise your options are pretty limited. Because of their maximized stability, 3-wheel bikes are the perfect solution.

Some include a cargo space at the back, but others may require you to purchase a cart to attach to the rear and pull with you.

Either way, the tricycle will support this extra weight because it isn’t being piled onto the bike itself, like it would be on a 2-wheeler. Tricycles have excellent balance, so you’ll hardly notice the extra weight on the back.

The only downside is that it will make the 3-wheel bike move slower, but you wouldn’t choose a tricycle for speedy cycling.

Rider’s Position

One of the most important things to do as a cyclist is ensure that you know the correct rider’s position, else you may fall off the bike and get hurt, or strain your muscles due to bad posture.

Children’s tricycles usually have high backs on the saddles as an extra safety measure, so this isn’t an issue. However, 3-wheel bikes for adults typically don’t have backs on the seats but are easy to fit.

The good news is that you posture can relax more despite that because the handlebars are much more in line with the saddle than they are on a 2-wheel bicycle.

Tricycle riders can sit comfortably without constantly thinking about having the perfect riding position.

This is a great factor for those who may not be able to hold that posture for long, or those who have had problems with their backs.

Is Easier To Ride

Because of the three above factors, 3-wheel bikes are easier to ride than 2-wheel bikes.

You should never disregard all that you know about cycling on a 2-wheeler because you must still take safety precautions, but you won’t need to have your mind on balance, steering, and the road ahead all at once.

Knowing that you are as stable as you can possibly be on a tricycle is the most important thing.

Not everybody wants to cycle challenging routes and experience off-road terrain, so tricycles are a great alternative to 2-wheel bicycles.

A slow, easy ride is good enough for plenty of casual cyclists, which may actually make a tricycle ride more enjoyable than a ride on a 2-wheeler. If cycling is difficult then lots of people might give up.

But with an easier 3-wheel bike, that won’t happen.


The improved balance of a tricycle is integral for efficient handling.

Some people are afraid to ride bikes around the city because there is so much navigation required, so the simpler handling of a 3-wheel bike is important for giving them a way to get around too.

The high saddle in line with the handlebars give you the best position to navigate around obstacles.

You’ll find that handling the tricycle on uphill routes is a lot easier as well. This is because you’re closer to the ground than you are on a 2-wheel bike, so there is no need to lean your body forwards to pick up momentum.

Less pressure on your body as you ride means a lower chance of you wearing yourself out or getting a strain.

Importance Of 3 Wheel Bicycles
Image Credit: woodleywonderworks | license: CC BY 2.0

Can Go A Lot Slower

Bicycles are always associated with speed, but not everyone can pedal that fast. It is almost impossible to completely relax on a 2-wheeler because your legs and feet need to be moving at a prolonged pace.

On a tricycle, that isn’t an issue.

You can take things much more slowly, which also makes a 3-wheeler safer to ride around other people because you won’t accidentally barrel into anyone if you don’t spot them right away.

People who are just learning to ride a bike, whether an adult or a child, will benefit from starting with a 3-wheel bike because it teaches pedaling, navigation and decent riding posture without the extra pressure of needing to retain balance.

The tricycle itself is your biggest support, and this is an important way to get more people into riding.

Are 3 Wheel Bicycles Safe To Ride?

3-wheel bikes are absolutely safe to ride. Of course, you should wear a helmet, just as you would on a 2-wheel bike, but tricycles are designed to give you much more support than you would have on a 2-wheeler.

You’ll be able to navigate the road ahead much better, especially if it is bumpy.

Tricycles may not be the best choice for off-road cycling because they can’t weave about the same way as 2-wheel bikes, but they’ll keep you much steadier.

You’ll be safest sticking to roads that you know a 3-wheel bike will have no trouble riding on.

Pedaling is simplified, so you barely even have to think about it, which allows you to be more aware of what is going on around you.

If you need to bring heavier items on a ride and aren’t confident cycling on a heavily laden bicycle, go for a tricycle. Just knowing that you’ll be safer before you’ve even got on the bike will ease your mind.

To sum up, you’ll only feel unsafe on a 3-wheel bike if you are riding recklessly, though this is much harder to do because of how a tricycle stabilizes you.

Wearing a helmet, paying attention and avoiding roads that are too rough are all you need to do; the bike will do the rest.

Different Types of 3 Wheel Bikes

Adult Tricycles

One of the biggest misconceptions about tricycles is that they are only designed for children. While they are more commonly used by children, adults can also ride tricycles.

Anybody who struggles with balance on a bicycle would benefit from the extra wheel on a tricycle.

3-wheel bikes are made for gentle cruising. They have one wheel in the front and two wheels in the back. This makes steering easy, as the vehicle turns like a conventional bicycle.

Modern 3-wheelers often have differentials on the rear axle, helping to maintain comfort and control during turns.

Your posture will be much more relaxed and can ride with your own pace; as there is no extra burden to either maintain pace to keep it balance.

These are preferred by adults with leg or back issues or seniors in their late seventy. You can use them to ride around town and stay active irrespective of your condition or age.

In my personal view its great for light exercise and easy to maintain. Have recently gifted one to my own grandfather and he seems quite happy about it.

Electric Cargo 3 Wheel Bikes

As said above three wheel bicycles are great at carrying cargo; especially if they have electric power assist.

Even when they are not electric powered 2-wheel bicycles are slim and streamlined, so piling too much weight on them will make riding very difficult.

The extra stability of a tricycle is much more efficient for this purpose.

I have also seen people modifying their cargo e-bikes to carry kids and all. As long as there is anything to carry in quantity or large weight there is nothing better than a tricycle at short distance.

Ultimate Guide to 3 Wheel Bicycles - A Whole New Ride!
Image Credit: Kamyar Adl | License: CC BY 2.0

Recumbent Tricycles

A recumbent bike allows you to sit back and pedal to your destination in comfort and style.

Instead of being upright with no back support, a recumbent bike gives you support and a more comfortable riding position for long rides on the road. The recumbent tricycle goes even further.

A Recumbent tricycle has the benefits of a recumbent bike, but now you have three wheels, two in the front, and one in the back. This gives you even more stability and control.

Being low to the ground, in contrast to regular upright bikes, gives you a lower center of gravity with added stability and control.

Recumbent tricycles are a safe and comfortable way to enjoy bike riding, especially long touring rides.

No matter if you are young or old, recumbent tricycles allow you to ride the open road safely and comfortably.

Semi Recumbent Bike

A semi recumbent bike is the latest addition to comfortable bikes for old and adults. Being the cross between the comfort and recumbent bike it features the best of both worlds.

While traditional comfort bikes give you a better riding position it still requires you to lean forward sitting on that skinny high seat. A semi recumbent bike feels comfortable to seniors and adults with back issues.

The semi-recumbent bikes comes with a wider seat, lumbar support, low step-through design and natural riding position with easy to reach handlebars. Thus punting less strain on your legs

Are 3 Speed Bikes are Good For Seniors?

Bicycles aren’t amazing at going slow. The faster you’re going on a bicycle, the easier it is to stay upright. As people get older, falls become an increasingly large concern, especially when you’re going fast.

This means that bicycling can become a risky endeavor for some older people.

3-wheel bikes, by contrast, are stable at all speeds. This makes them amazing for riders who might prefer to go more slowly or riders who might have difficulty keeping a two-wheel bicycle upright.

Upright adult tricycles are usually created with seniors in mind, meaning they’re easier to get on and off than a normal bicycle and are commonly sized to fit through standard doors.

Staying active is an important concern for some seniors.

A 3-speed bike of any sort can be a great way to get a bit of regular exercise in for people of all ages.

Bikes are perfect for short rides to the grocery store, quick jaunts around the neighborhood, and scenic rides down local paved bike routes. Not only do these activities give you plenty of cardio, they’ll also help keep seniors social and even strengthen their bones.

5 Reasons To get 3 Wheel Bicycles

Cycling Reduce Stress

Studies have shown over and over again that getting a little bit of exercise can tremendously improve your quality of life. Cycling for 30 minutes a day improves sleep, lifts your mood, and gives you a break from everyday life so you can reset your brain.

It can help give you new perspectives on the problems you’re working on, and has been proven to reduce stress. It’s one of the smartest things you can do for yourself.

Using Trikes is Easy, Safe & Stable

Traditional bicycles aren’t always made to be accessible.

A fancy road bike might have a seat that’s difficult to climb into, weird pedals that require special shoes, and will require special parking considerations when you arrive at your destination so it won’t fall over.

On top of that, it probably can’t carry a gallon of milk back from the grocery store. A trike, by contrast, will have a step-through frame, can be pedaled in any sort of shoes, and has a basket to make carrying things easy.

It’s also stable at any speed, making it easy to slow down and stop without having to find something to balance against or get off the bike.

Helps You Stay Fit & Healthy

Cardio doesn’t just have mental benefits. The name “cardiovascular” refers to the systems your body uses to distribute oxygenated blood throughout all of its blood vessels.

Biking helps strengthen your lungs and heart in a major way. It’ll also help build muscles in your legs and lower body, ensuring that you stay fit and healthy.

Prevents Injury & Strengthen Bones

Any part of your body that’s left unused grows weaker. By engaging your legs and biking regularly, you can help ensure that you’re getting enough activity so your body stays strong.

Even if you’re somewhat active at home, having a routine of regular physical exercise can massively help reduce your susceptibility to some types of injuries, especially as you grow older.

Improves Social Life

Not only are three-wheel bikes a gateway to the world around you, they’re also a social activity in and of themselves. Many adult riders ride in groups, giving them the opportunity to explore their towns at their own pace and travel to fun locations with ease.

Adult trikes are great at providing transportation to social hubs and events, like parks, classes, church, and meetups with friends.

Their range might not be as large as a car, but they’re a lot more fun to ride and you get the benefit of exercise along the way.

Even if you’re not going to a specific place, adult tricycles can be a perfect way to meet new people.

Simply riding through a park can give you opportunities to talk and socialize, allowing you to expand your circle of friends. You never know who you’re going to meet!

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