Christmas gift ideas for the beginner cyclist

Get that newbie something great

So someone on your gift giving list has recently taken up cycling and is showing all the signs of infatuation. You know they’ve got the bike, a helmet and some other basics, but what else do they need? We have you covered! Below BikeRadar lists a few gift options for beginner cyclists that will suit a range of budgets.

Cycling gloves

Gloves, yes gloves are an important and easily overlooked part of a cyclist's outfit. What some beginner cyclists may not know is that hand comfort plays a crucial role in riding enjoyment. Gloves serve many purposes, most importantly they protect your hands in case of a crash. They can also add warmth, wind resistance and offer some padding. These Evoc gloves are airy, feature touchscreen compatible fingertips, and the smooth palm resists bunching up. 

Hands are important, and by default so are gloves
Hands are important, and by default so are gloves

  • Price: £35 / $38 / AU$38

Crank Brothers Pica Mini tool

Most on the go bike fixes can be handled by mini tools
Most on the go bike fixes can be handled by mini tools

Mini tools (or multi tools) are small, easily packable tools that cyclists carry with them in case a repair or adjustment is needed while out riding. They vary in capability, but the Crank Bros Pica features common allen keys, Torx heads, a Phillips screwdriver and a chain tool for repairing a chain. If your gift saves your beginner cyclist from having to walk home or call in a rescue pick up they'll be grateful forever!

  • Price: £43 / $55 / AU$44

Knog PC patches

Flats are inevitable, luckily they're pretty easy to overcome with the right equipment
Flats are inevitable, luckily they're pretty easy to overcome with the right equipment

Getting a puncture on the go, or noticing a flat tire when it's time to ride is a serious drain even for experienced cyclists. Having the necessary equipment to fix the tube is something every cyclist should have handy. Knog's PC patches come in a small plastic case housing two levers, one sand paper and eight borderline adult-themed tube patches. 

There's an old saying that patching a tube more than six times is too many, but in reality the patch (when done correctly) is stronger than the tube. Plus, patching tubes is much more environmentally friendly and financially prudent than replacing an entire tube because of one tiny hole.  

  • Price: £8 / $6 / AU$TBC

Bike cleaning

A clean bike is a smooth, happy bike
A clean bike is a smooth, happy bike

Your newly engrossed cyclist probably rides a lot, and therefore their bike likely could use some love. A gift of Maxima's SC1 polish lives up to the hype of being a new bike in a can. Regular use can keep their bike working better and give them an excuse to spend more time with their new hobby.

  • Price: £11 / $10.50 / AU$20

Garmin Edge Explore 1000 cycle computer

They'll never get lost again… maybe
They'll never get lost again… maybe

One of the greatest things about cycling is finding new routes. With that new found freedom, getting lost or somewhat turned around, is a real thing. With Garmin's Edge Explore 1000 those chances go way down. In addition to keeping your gift getter on course, it can display three pages of custom ride data, covering all the usual things like current ride speed (including current/max/average etc), distance, time, elevation and ascent.

  • Price:  £390 / $450 /AU$749

Pactimo Apex MTB Jersey

Cycling specific clothing makes a world of difference
Cycling specific clothing makes a world of difference

Pactimo's Apex MTB Jersey has mountain bike in the title but it's definitely up for any ride. It's super soft, wicks sweat well and comes in five colors from loud to subtle. The best part is that with its relaxed tech tee appearance, the Apex is a fine piece for any athletic activity, not just cycling. 

  • Price: £40 / $50 / Not available in AU

Knog Oi Bell

Small, inexpensive and important, every bike should have a bell on its bars
Small, inexpensive and important, every bike should have a bell on its bars

There's simply no better or more polite way to say "Hey, get out of my way!" or "Look up! Pay attention!" than a friendly bike bell. Like cycling socks, bike bells come in an endless array of styles and colors but Knog's Oi Bell puts a stylish twist on it with a unique look and sound. Whatever design or ring you choose, a bell is a must-have for any cyclist who frequents bike paths or cycling lanes. 

  • Price: £16 / $20 / Not available in AU

Maps

There's nothing quite like gathering around a big map and getting excited for the adventure ahead
There's nothing quite like gathering around a big map and getting excited for the adventure ahead

Sure we live in a digital age, and yes there are plenty of ways to navigate online or on your smartphone but nothing beats unfolding a large paper map and planning out a huge day on the bike. Even if mega miles aren't on the agenda, a map may highlight new routes through familiar terrain, whether it be an extension or a shortcut. Plus, maps never run out of batteries.

  • Prices from:  £9 / $12 /AU$8

Arm and knee warmers

Arm and knee warmers come in styles to suit everyone's taste and are indispensible riding gear
Arm and knee warmers come in styles to suit everyone's taste and are indispensible riding gear

They may look a little funny, but arm and leg covers are a staple in nearly every experienced cyclist's wardrobe. They are used when temperatures may change while out on a ride and help to convert a summer cycling outfit into something well suited to cooler rides.

Look for something that's fleece lined — and black is typically a safe option. They’re size-specific, so buy to match T-shirt size. These Sportful leg warmers are built for the days when the weather takes a major turn for the worse.

  • Price:  £35 / $60 /AU$59

Casual cycling shirts

Even off the bike, they can still show that they're a cyclist
Even off the bike, they can still show that they're a cyclist

When you fall head over heels in love with something, it's often at the forefront of your mind constantly and infiltrates all aspects of your life. Cycling is very much that way and you can usually pick out a cyclist even in their casual attire. 

Like socks and bells, the cycling T-shirt market is vast and colorful, encompassing every discipline from urban commuting to downhill racing. 

  • Price: £17 / $19 / AU$15

Qloom Hey Dude liner shorts

Bike-specific shorts allow for riding longer distances more comfortably
Bike-specific shorts allow for riding longer distances more comfortably

Depending on how new cycling is to your gift recipient, they may or may not have experienced the easy-riding comfort that cycling-specific shorts provide. Cycle shorts have a padded sit area, commonly called a chamois, sewn inside. The chamois, combined with the snug fit, reduces any chance of discomfort for smooth pedaling for miles. 

It’s easy to poke fun at cycling shorts, but a good pair can completely transform one’s comfort in the saddle. Compared with cheap shorts that sag awkwardly and can chafe, a quality pair of shorts makes a huge difference. These Qloom Hey Dude liners are designed to be worn under regular shorts so your giftee gets all the comfort and none of the awkwardness. 

  • Price:  £39 / $55 /Not available in AU

Dakine Drafter 12L hydration pack

Hydration packs are super handy for storing tons of water and gear
Hydration packs are super handy for storing tons of water and gear

Hydration is a good thing. It's especially important for cyclists who might not realize how much water they're losing through sweat. Hydration packs vary in fluid and gear carrying capacity, but most allow riders to bring along more water than bottles alone. Dakine's Drafter 12L pack comes in five colors, hauls 3L (100oz) of water, and can swallow 12L (700 cu in) of gear. Drinking can be done while riding, practically hands free thanks to the tube which runs over the shoulder strap. 

  • Price: £80 / $125 / AU$125

Leyzne Macro Drive 800XL light

No matter the season, or time of day, bright lights and visibility are key
No matter the season, or time of day, bright lights and visibility are key

Day or night, road or mountain, lights are an essential part of every good cycling set up. The Leyzne (pronounced like "design") Macro Drive 800XL throws some serious light into the darkness with 800 lumens and a run time of 1hr 40min. Recharging is simple with a micro USB. Installation and removal is quick as well.

  • Price: £65 / $85 / AU$110

Related: All of our Christmas gift ideas for the cyclists in your life in one big feature

Russell Eich

Tech Writer, US
Russell fell head over heels in love with bikes in the '90s, and has been involved in the bike industry ever since. Between wrenching in bike shops, guiding professionally, and writing about bikes, Russell has honed an appreciation for what works, gained knowledge of what doesn't, and can barely contain his enthusiasm for what comes next. His two-wheeled passion continues in the Rocky Mountains high above Boulder, Colorado.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: High altitudes, forgotten singletracks, bike parks, roads without cars
  • Current Bikes: Custom Meriwether steel hardtail, Specialized S-Works Enduro 29, Kona Jake the Snake, Trek 69er, and a bunch more
  • Dream Bike: Yeti SB5c, Intense Tracer 275C, Black Cat custom road
  • Beer of Choice: Gin + Tonic
  • Location: Rollinsville, CO, USA

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