Choosing your first motorcycle can be tricky but it is a bit more difficult for women, especially short women. There are a lot of things to consider including seat height and the weight of the motorcycle overall. However, at the end of the day, choosing a bike comes down to the personal preference of design, style, or type of riding you’re planning to use your bike for and it wouldn’t be right to restrict women from riding a bigger engine motorcycle just because of their physical appearance. Always remember, the best motorcycle is the one you feel comfortable on and are confident that you can ride safely. The only thing to think about is whether you can put your foot down. In this article, we’ll explore the best motorcycles for short women and what makes them a great choice.
Suitable Two-Wheelers for Petite Female Riders
Perhaps you’re curious about the reason for indicating which types of two-wheelers are more suitable for petite female riders. Typically, women tend to be smaller in stature than men on average. Female riders, statistically speaking, have a height range of 5 feet to 5 feet 4 inches and weigh around 100 to 170 pounds on average. In contrast, men are generally about 5 inches taller and heavier than most women, and this discrepancy in height can significantly impact the length of the inseam and, subsequently, the height of the seat. In addition to the seat’s height being lower for short female riders, it’s important for both experienced and novice riders to have a motorcycle that they can confidently handle. This requires the bike to be lightweight and provide a smooth and stable ride experience.
If you’re ever having doubts about riding a motorcycle because of your height, here is some inspiration for you:
To make women’s choices easier, I’ve put together some the tips and tricks to make your riding more accessible on any model of motorcycle and picked up 10 of the best motorcycles for short women.
What to consider
The height of the seat is an essential factor to consider when buying a new motorcycle because it affects the overall comfort and usability of the bike. It is due to the seat height can determine whether or not you can easily touch the ground while seated, which is especially important when starting and stopping the bike.
Low seat height can even affect many riders’ ability to reach and operate the handlebars and foot pegs and to shift weight to control the bike. While a higher seat can provide a better view of the road, a lower seat guarantees better control and maneuverability.
Your inseam is the distance from the floor to the top of your inner thigh, and it is essential to know your inseam before you purchase a motorcycle.
The inseam will help you determine the size and type of bike that best suits you and your riding position.
When you’re shorter than some motorcycles are made for, you may need to adjust the height and other specs of the machine to fit your needs. That’s what lowering kits are for. Adjusting a motorcycle’s seat height and handlebars makes reaching the ground with a flat foot and handling the bike easier. However, there are some consequences of lowering your motorcycle. For example, it reduces cornering clearance, and you can’t lean the machine as far.
To adjust your motorcycle you can also get wider bars, pullback risers and orthick or platform sole shoes.
Tips and tricks for short women riders
- Change the technique you mount the motorcycle – change the way you throw your leg over your bike. Try mounting from the right side of the motorcycle using a foot peg as a stool to stand on while you throw your leg over the bike.
- Put only your left foot down when stopping – Putting both feet down may feel confident but when you’re a short rider you have to put the tiptoes on the ground trying to balance the bike. The truth is you’re not going to need to lean the bike so far to get it too heavy to hold. If that’s not helping, here are some fun ways to stop your motorcycle too:
- Choose a higher angle of the road to put your foot down when stopping to avoid crashing your bike.
- Get a lower seat – this is the best way of altering your seat height without changing your suspension geometry
- Get crash protection – to avoid crashing your bike as the chances of dropping it may be higher if you’re a short rider and are not able to fully put your feet on the ground.
- Turn the handlebars away from the kickstand first – in case the bike is really heavy and then use the weight of your body to swirl everything else in the other direction.
Motorcycle Gear for Short Women
The available options for apparel are going to be very limited, particularly for the arms, legs, and knees. You will consistently find the slimmest options from Italian brands such as Dainese, Spidi, and Alpinestars, as well as a few others like Rokker from Switzerland which offers a slim fit. You can easily browse through all of these brands and discover a diverse range of options suitable for all types of riding. Doodle also offers her pick of Spring – Summer motorcycle gear.
10 Best Motorcycles for Short Women
Triumph Street Twin
The seat height of the 900cc Street Twin is a mere 29.5 inches from the ground, which is low enough for almost all riders to place both feet flat on the pavement. The slim profile of the motorcycle’s parallel-twin engine and fuel tank makes it possible for even the shortest riders to feel confident when straddling the bike. The Street Twin is a classic motorcycle that delivers a smooth, comfortable ride while also being highly capable. It’s a fantastic addition to the Triumph Bonneville lineup, maintaining its reputation as a bike that both beginners and seasoned riders can enjoy. The Street Twin is a cost-effective option that comes with a high-torque engine, excellent braking system, and stable suspension, all of which are hallmarks of Triumph motorcycles.
The Street Twin boasts comfortable ergonomics, thanks to a well-positioned seat and handlebars, which provide excellent stability. It’s a motorcycle that riders can learn and progress on as they become more experienced, making it a bike that they can grow with over time. While it’s an excellent option for shorter riders, the Street Twin is also an ideal choice for beginners due to its forgiving nature and ease of operation.
Kawasaki Ninja 400
Female riders will surely appreciate the classic and stylish appearance of the Kawasaki sportbike, which features a sleek and aggressive design. Even novice riders will find it hard to complain about this fully-loaded machine that’s ready to hit the road.
The Kawasaki Ninja 400 may have a slightly taller seat height, but its narrow body allows riders with a shorter inseam to comfortably plant their feet on the ground. The seat height of the Ninja 400 is around 30.9 inches, which is low enough to give shorter riders sufficient control. Weighing just 366 pounds, this motorcycle is lightweight and easy to maneuver, making it an ideal choice for female riders. Even if you can’t place both feet flat on the ground, you’ll likely feel confident with one foot and the tips of your toes on the other side.
Harley Davidson Street 500
The Harley Davidson Street 500 is a fantastic option for petite women as well. With a slender frame weighing only 492 pounds, it’s simple to maneuver and manage. The seat height of 28 inches is a perfect match for smaller riders. Not only is the Street 500 a fashionable bike, but it’s also versatile, serving both recreational and utilitarian purposes. Its key characteristics include a V-Twin engine, dual-disc front brakes, and a six-speed gearbox.
Harley-Davidson is not typically associated with producing compact and light motorcycles. However, Street 500 is an exception to this rule. This cruiser model is an excellent option for individuals who are short in height, with a seat height of only 640 mm (26 inches) – the lowest in this list. Additionally, the bike is surprisingly light and has a low center of gravity, making it easy to get off the kickstand.
While the Street 500’s power output of 32.5 HP may be lower than other motorcycles, this is not a significant factor for Harley-Davidson riders. Harley bikes are not designed for high-performance riding but rather for a relaxed and enjoyable cruise down the road. The Street 500 offers precisely that, with the added benefit of stylish design features that enhance its overall appeal.
Kawasaki Vulcan 900
The Kawasaki Vulcan 900 is a boulevard-style cruiser that any woman will like at first glance. This is one of those powerful cruisers that shorter riders can enjoy riding. This motorcycle is a robust cruiser that can be ridden by children under six years old. Its engine has a displacement of 903cc and is a liquid-cooled V-twin 4-stroke, providing more power and torque for an exceptional riding experience. However, due to its weight of approximately 610.8 pounds, it might be challenging for women with smaller body frames to ride.
The bike’s seat height is only 26.8 inches, which means even the shortest riders can comfortably mount it. With its mighty 903cc liquid-cooled V-twin engine, this motorcycle is one of the top performers in its category. However, the weight of this motorcycle is around 619.6 lbs (280 Kg) which is pretty heavy and might need strong legs and a fair amount of motorcycle experience to handle this bike.
The key factor for the Scout is its very low seat height of 25.6”. This is a bike that anyone should be able to sit on and be comfortable reaching the floor on.
When you’re sitting on this bike, you’ll feel stable thanks to its chunky tires and stretched-out wheelbase. This stability is especially evident when you come to a stop, as you’ll be able to put your foot down and maintain balance with ease. For example, if you’re doing a slow turn in a tight space like a car park, the reassuring feeling of being able to put your foot down will help you stay upright.
Indian offers a variety of accessories for this bike so you can customize it to your preferences. With a forward-reaching seat and handlebars, you can have complete control over your ride. This means you’ll be able to adjust the bike to fit you perfectly and have a comfortable, enjoyable experience.
See how 5 ft girl rides Indian Scout:
Honda CBR 300R
The Honda CBR300R is a sportbike that serves as Honda’s entry-level offering. It boasts exceptional sportbike features that cater to riders of all kinds. With a narrow build, lightweight construction, and a sleek Grand Prix design, it’s perfect for navigating through city streets. Additionally, it’s fully customizable and enjoys excellent aftermarket support. The bike’s slim design is particularly appealing to riders with a smaller build Considering its seat height of 30.7 inches.
Despite being a small bike, the Honda CBR300R still packs a punch. Its engine is powerful, and the six-speed transmission is user-friendly. The steering wheel can be adjusted, and the seat is comfortable, making it an excellent fit for smaller women. While the bike’s compact size might be off-putting to some, it’s still adequately sized to offer a thrilling riding experience.
Short women seeking a motorcycle that blends innovation and tradition should consider the Ducati Scrambler Icon. This updated Scrambler model is not only more comfortable and contemporary but also offers enhanced safety features.
The Scrambler’s seat height is a manageable 30.6 inches, which allows smaller riders to handle and maneuver it with ease. Weighing 417 pounds it’s also relatively lightweight, making it accessible for most short riders. Additionally, its dependable road clearance and ground reach make for a comfortable and stable ride.
One of the Scrambler Icon’s standout features is the Ducati Multimedia System, which offers hydraulic clutch control and a new handlebar switch. Short women looking for a modern, user-friendly motorcycle will appreciate these features, which enhance the riding experience and make it more enjoyable overall. The Scrambler is a stylish bike intended for comfort and convenience over performance.
Honda Rebel 500
Shorter people may find that Cruiser Motorcycles are a good choice due to their lower seat height. The Honda Rebel 500, in particular, is a great option for beginners, with a smooth and easy-to-handle powerband that makes for an enjoyable ride.
The Rebel 500 is available in both ABS and non-ABS models, and Honda offers a variety of additional accessories that riders can customize to their liking. Whether you’re looking for a beginner-friendly bike or simply want to enjoy the smooth ride of a Cruiser, the Honda Rebel 500 is a solid choice.
With a seat height of 27.2 inches and a weight of approximately 408 pounds, the Honda Rebel 500 is an ideal motorcycle for short women who stand at least 5 feet tall. Its lightweight design and lower center of gravity make it easy to handle and maneuver, allowing for a comfortable and safe ride. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced rider, the Rebel 500 is an excellent choice for cruising around town or exploring scenic roads.
The BMW G 310 R is a motorcycle that’s tailored to fit the needs of female riders. It boasts a sporty feel, as well as easy handling and maneuverability, making it an excellent choice for those looking for a thrilling ride.
This bike has a strong, stylish design that features minimalistic elements, which is perfect for shorter riders. The G 310 R is also relatively light, weighing only around 361 pounds, which means that it’s easy for riders with smaller builds to handle and maneuver.
While the seat height of the BMW G 310 R is around 30.9 inches, which may not be considered low, it’s still a good fit for shorter riders as it’s easy to get on and off.
Additionally, the tubular space frame chassis is exceptionally sturdy, providing strength in any direction. The bike also has a low road clearance, which gives it an excellent center of mass for added stability. All in all, the BMW G 310 R is an excellent motorcycle for shorter riders who are looking for a stylish, high-performance bike that’s easy to handle.
Yamaha V-Star 250
For beginner riders, the Yamaha V-Star 250 is an excellent option thanks to its lightweight design and manageable power. Weighing in at just 324 pounds, this bike is easy to handle and control. Plus, with a seat height of 27 inches, even shorter women riders can comfortably touch the ground and feel confident on the road.
Despite its beginner-friendly nature, the V-Star 250 still boasts a classic V-Twin engine that delivers reliable power for cruising and everyday riding. And with its affordable price tag, this bike is a great choice for touring and commuting as well. If you’re looking for a lightweight, versatile motorcycle that won’t break the bank, the Yamaha V-Star 250 is worth considering. And it can even become your soulmate:
|Harley Davidson Street 500
|Kawasaki Vulcan 900
|Yamaha V-Star 250
|Honda Rebel 500
|Triumph Street Twin
|Honda CBR 300R
|Kawasaki Ninja 400
Bruce was born in Atlanta. He started riding motorcycles when he was 10 and has been passionate about them since. Bruce says he feels absolute freedom when he’s on two wheels. He prefers riding his bike slowly and smoothly along a country road and hardly ever enjoys wildly speedy rides. With a strong Ducati Multistrada 1200 in the current stable, Bruce enjoys his super powerful, comfortable and easy rides. Ducati Diavel is the beast he’s currently dreaming about…