Are Fixies Illegal Around The World?

Are Fixed Gear Bikes Illegal Around The World? All In One

Are fixed gear bikes illegal? well, fixed gear bikes are illegal when used without brakes. In most states, the law states that the bike should have at least one brake. The main issue with fixed gear bikes is that lack of brakes may cause accidents on the public roads.

Different countries however have regulations that can allow the fixed bikes on public roads under several conditions. On this article, we shall discuss more about what fixed gear bikes are, their advantages and disadvantages.

Later we shall have a look at various regulations that different states have set up for fixed gear bikes for them to be on public roads. If you are a rider or wants to be a rider in future, you will learn what is expected from you to own a fixed bike.

What are Fixed Gear Bikes?

Fixed gear bikes are bikes that are acquired from the machines that are used for track racing. The main character for fixed bikes is that they do not have a free wheel, you must pedal for movement to occur.

What are Fixed Gear Bikes?

Since the bike is free wheel, pedaling all the time helps you stay in shape especially during winter. The fixed gear bikes mostly lack brakes since they have velodrome.

To use a fixed gear bike however may need a front brake. Unlike the other bikes, the fixed gear bike does not allow you to coast.

Most of the modern bikes are freewheel whereby the rear wheel can help you once you stop pedaling. The first bikes in the world imitated the modern fixies where they lacked free wheel and had one gear ratio.

In the traditional times, fixies were best during winter. They need you to keep pedaling during winter which is a good source of energy.

Advantages of A Fixed Gear Bike

i. Low or no maintenance

Bikes that do not have ear shifter need low maintenance. This is the main reason why most urban New Yorkers choose to use the fixed gear bikes.

The bikes also have less components compared to other bikes making it easier to maintain the lesser components.

ii. Easy to customize

The fixed gear bikes are sleek and streamlined. Their design is a combination of modern design and simple mechanical design that makes them look very appealing. With their own identity, it is easy for an owner to customize their bike to look how they want.

Since the bicycle has fewer components is easy to change the look and make it look better in terms of color and other components.

Disadvantages of A Fixed Gear Bike

i. Getting used to a fixed gear bike may take some time.

If you are used to the braked bike, a fixed gear might give you a hard time. The bike needs pedaling at all-time unlike the other bikes which might take too much time to adapt.

ii. Going up the hill may be difficult since there is no gear shift available in fixed gear bikes.

This makes it hard going up and down the hill. The fixed gear bike is illegal in some states while others have established by laws that must be followed to own a fixed gear bike.

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in USA?

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in USA?

A. Arizona.

The bike must have a seat attached well, functioning brakes and the rider must use the traffic lanes.

B. California

No rider is allowed to ride a bike on a hallway unless it has braking system that can help them reduce accidents caused by riders.

C. Florida

Every bike needs at least one brake that enables you make braked wheels move on dry and leveled pavements. The bike does not really require a separate brake.

D. Michigan

You need a good braking system, a bell and a reflector. The bike should not carry more than two people.

E. Oklahoma

The bike must have at least one brake and a bell to be used on public roads.

F. Texas

The bike needs to have a brake to be used on public transport system.

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in UK?

Using fixed gear bikes in UK can be considered legal. However, the bike must have functioned braking system that function independently.

The brakes must be placed on the front wheel and the other one on the back wheel.

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in Canada?

The fixed gear bikes are booming in Canada. In every province in Canada there are different regulations regarding fixed gear bikes. For instance, in Ontario, it is illegal to have a bike without brakes.

A rider may end up paying $85 of fine when caught with a brakeless bike.

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in Australia?

Are Fixed Gear Bikes illegal in Australia?

In 2010, Australia stopped the sale of fixed gear bikes. A fine of 1.1 AUD million could be imposed in case you are caught selling or hiring them to the public. Any bikes sold in Australia must have a front and rear gear. It must also have two hand brakes.

The Australian law states that there is a high chance of a rider losing control and cause accident with other public road users.

Once you buy a fixie you can get brakes fixed on it to avoid colliding with the law.

Are Fixies illegal in European Union?

There are different laws in Europe concerning the fixed gear bike.

01. Austria

The bike must have independent brakes on each wheel. The bike must also have lights on the front and back of the bike.

02. Belgium

The bike must have a bell that can be heard clearly and brakes that function well on both wheels.

03. Denmark

All bikes need brakes on both wheels that are functioning a bell and a reflector.

04. France

The bike must have two brakes, two lights and many reflectors and a bell for a rider to ride on public roads.

05. Germany

The bike must have functioning brakes on both wheels, reflectors and a bell for you to ride on public roads. There were high profile cases in Berlin therefore the fixed back wheel must have an adequate braking system.

06. Hungary

All bikes need to have two sets of independent brakes. The bike must also have a bell, lighting systems and reflectors.

07. Italy

The bikes need to have to adequate braking system, bell, white lamp for visibility and a rider need a reflector. The pedals need amber reflectors on both sides. However, these laws are hardly enforced in Italy.

08. Netherlands

The bike needs to have a functioning braking system.

09. Poland

The bike needs to have at least one functioning brake

10. Spain

The bikes need a braking system, at the front and back rear and a bell.

11. Sweden

The bikes are supposed to have brake and bell. When riding during the night, the rules are a bit strict in regards to visibility.


In conclusion, fixed gear bikes are very efficient especially for riders. In most states, the fixed gear bikes are not illegal. However, there are some regulations that must be followed for an efficient use of the fixed gear bike on the public roads.

In most cases the main requirement is a functioning braking system.

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