Riding a bike that is customized to your body's measurements ensures a more comfortable ride.

How to Measure Torso & Arm Length for a Road Bike Fit

by Dan Howard

Customizing the fit of your road bike is a sure bet for making long treks more comfortable and more enjoyable. Riding a well-proportioned bike also goes a long way toward minimizing your muscle and joint pain the next day. Get help from a friend to accurately measure your torso and arm length and ensure that the bike shop customizes your ride to perfectly match your dimensions.

1. Measure Torso Length

1 Take off your shoes.

2. Measure Torso Length

2 Stand on a flat surface with your back pressed against a wall.

3. Measure Torso Length

3 Spread your feet out so that there are about 6 inches of space between them.

4. Measure Torso Length

4 Locate the top of the sternum, which is the point just below your throat where your collarbone forms a "V" shape.

5. Measure Torso Length

5 Place a hardcover book on the ground in between your feet, standing up with the book spine pressed vertically against the wall.

6. Measure Torso Length

6 Lift the book up the wall toward your inseam, stopping when the book rests under your body similarly to a bike seat.

7. Measure Torso Length

7 Measure the distance, in inches, from the top edge of the book to the top of the sternum. The resulting measurement is your torso length.

8. Measure Arm Length

1 Hold your arms stretched straight out to the sides, with palms facing forward.

9. Measure Arm Length

2 Grasp a pen in one hand and make a fist.

10. Measure Arm Length

3 Locate the edge of your collarbone, just above the tip of your shoulder.

11. Measure Arm Length

4 Measure the distance from the edge of your collarbone to the pen. This measurement is your arm length, in inches.

Items you will need

  • Hardcover book
  • Tape measure

Photo Credits

  • Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images