5 Reasons You Should Ride Like The Dutch

Discover the many perks and pleasures of Dutch-style bikes.

Woman riding Dutch bike by the sea

What is a Dutch Bike?

The Dutch may not have invented the bicycle, but a visit to the Netherlands will quickly prove that the Dutch invented and continue to perfect cycling culture. Bikes are everywhere, and riders take all shapes, sizes, and ages. Biking is in Dutch blood! 

All Dutch-style bicycles share a few unique qualities designed to make cycling practical, enjoyable, and above all, a regular part of life, from work to the weekend. Let’s see what sets Dutch bicycles apart from other bikes and what makes them so great to ride…

1. Step-Through or Low-Step Frame

Most traditional Dutch bikes feature a low, or step-through-style frame, which allows for easy mounting and dismounting as well as a comfortable, casual upright riding position. The design of theses popular bikes is especially useful for riders who carry cargo, ride in more formal or rigid attire, or pedal routes where stopping is frequent.

2. Dutch upright bicycles

The upright seating position of the Dutch bike is an unmistakable feature and one with a ton of rider benefits.

  • Weight is shifted onto the legs and hips, reducing pressure on the neck and back, creating a more comfortable ride.
  • Visibility is improved for the rider, not only in the immediate vicinity but also in the distance, as the rider’s sightline is extended.
  • Sitting up taller allows the rider to be more easily seen by motorists, pedestrians, and other cyclists.

3. Fully Loaded and Ready to Ride

Dutch bicycles typically come with everything a rider needs including a headlight, tail light, bell, storage rack, kickstand, and rear-wheel lock. The bikes are very utility-driven and are designed to meet (nearly) every possible need a person might have, and also reduces the demand for car-based trips and errands. They make great city bikes! The rear rack is especially handy for carrying cargo or attaching additional accessories like panniers or even seats for small children.

Dutch bike showing all weather features like covered chain guard and fenders

4. All-Weather Features

Weather, in the Netherlands, ranges from summery to snowy, with salt-tinged air present in every season. With this in mind, Dutch bikes are designed to suit all weather conditions, with a few special features. These include:

  • Front and rear fenders
  • Skirt and mudguards
  • A covered chain guard or belt glider
  • Using rust-resistant materials like aluminum

These high quality features not only protect the bike from the elements, but they also help keep the rider clean and comfortable, and able to wear regular clothes while biking, even to the office. The Dutch have another saying, “dress for the destination, not the ride” and this ethos becomes immediately apparent when you visit. You’ll see people dressed up, dressed down, to the nines, and in their jammies, all riding bikes. It’s easy, practical, and above all natural to do in an environment that has put the bike first and developed the best bikes for doing all the activities of daily life.

5. Ride Like The Dutch, Even on Hills

The Netherlands are famously flat, and for this reason, Dutch bikes are typically on the heavier side. They are also single speed or only have limited speeds. Bikes like this can be challenging to ride in places with more gradients. This is where the wonders of modern technology come to the rescue…hello, ebikes! Here at Gazelle North America, we use top-of-the-line electric bike systems to make every hill feel as flat as Holland. Using low gears and high assist levels neutralizes inclines and puts joy into every cycling experience.

Electric bikes have revolutionized the way people get around and opened up the possibility of cycling to a much wider audience. Many of the typical concerns and obstacles have been reduced or alleviated, from worries about being able to keep up with traffic, to fitness fears, to comfort in the saddle. Taking all the great qualities of the Dutch bike and then supercharging them with the power of a dependable, durable, and natural-feeling motor creates the ultimate ride experience. It’s Dutch with a modern twist. We have combined all our years of expertise with top of the line technology to bring the best of both worlds into our entire fleet of bikes.

Even the Dutch themselves are getting wise to all the perks of ebikes, and it’s common to see them more and more on the streets of Amsterdam, the cycle paths of Utrecht, and the bicycle highways of Nijmegen. We are proud to bring our Dutch bike culture and qualities to the US so even more people can experience the joy of riding like the Dutch.

So what are the five reasons you should ride like the Dutch? Comfort, convenience, durability, and quality, and if you’re open to embracing the latest technology, ease in the form of an ebike. If you want a bike that not only does it all, but also makes the simple act of cycling feel like a luxury, consider a Dutch style bike.

Ready to experience the fun, convenience, and sheer delight of riding like the Dutch?

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