Kickstands are the unsung heroes of cycling, especially if you like nothing more than loading your bike and touring. No more looking for an elusive wall when you need to rifle through your many bags to find something. No more leaning your bike on the ground and potentially damaging components.
They might not be to everyone’s taste (we are looking at you, road cyclists!) but a lot of riders could benefit from fitting the right kickstand.
Here we take a look at the best kickstands for bikes and how to choose the right one, no matter your riding style.
- Pletscher Zoom ESGE Kickstand (Best Rear Kickstand)
- BV Adjustable Rear Mount Kickstand (Best For Mountain Bikes)
- Sataway Bike Kickstand (Best Adjustable Rear Kickstand)
- Topcabin Bike Kickstand (Best Budget Rear Kickstand)
- EVO Axle Mount Kickstand for 16 in. Wheels (Best Kids Kickstand)
- Ursus Jumbo Double Leg Kickstand (Best Double Leg)
- Greenfield Kickstand (Best Single Leg Center Mount Stand)
- AMS Kickstand (Best Portable Kickstand)
- Electra GO! Dual Leg Adjustable Kickstand (Best Trek Kickstand)
- Schwinn Bike Stand (Best Schwinn Stand)
Best Rear Mount Kickstands
1. Pletscher Zoom ESGE Kickstand (Best Rear Kickstand)
- Material: Aluminum
- Weight: 11.9oz
The Swiss-made Pletscher Zoom ESGE Kickstand is a durable yet lightweight aluminum kickstand that is a firm favorite among touring bike riders.
This kickstand will keep on working no matter how much abuse you put it through on the road.
- Lightweight – you will barely notice the additional weight on the bike.
- Adjustable – the length can be easily adjusted for 26-inch to 28-inch wheels.
- Long-Lasting – the aluminum construction and solid spring are built to last.
2. BV Adjustable Rear Mount Kickstand (Best For Mountain Bikes)
- Material: Aluminum
If the chainstay on your mountain bike has two holes (18mm or 40mm) the BV Adjustable Rear Mount Kickstand is a solid option.
The wide foot helps to keep the kickstand secure when deployed and it is easy to adjust the length using the latch to get the perfect resting angle.
- Adjustable – tool-free adjustability to fit bikes with 24-inch to 29-inch wheels.
- Non-slip sole – keeps the bike secure and stable.
- Easy installation – great for bikes with 18mm or 40mm mounting bosses.
3. Sataway Bike Kickstand (Best Adjustable Rear Kickstand)
- Material: Aluminum
- Weight: 14oz
For bikes without mounting eyelets at the rear, the two-point mounting mechanism on the Sataway Bike Kickstand helps to give maximum stability.
The angle between the two mounting points can be adjusted to give maximum compatibility between different bikes.
- Adjustable – easily adjustable to cover bikes with 24-inch to 28-inch wheels.
- Stability – the two-point mounting system gives this stand much more stability when holding a loaded bike.
- Non-slip – the foot works well even on wet surfaces.
4. Topcabin Bike Kickstand (Best Budget Rear Kickstand)
- Material: Aluminum
- Weight: 4.8oz
The Topcabin Kickstand is a great value rear kickstand, great for students on a budget who want something solid and easy to install on their college commuter bike.
- Adjustable – using the supplied wrench, the length of the kickstand can be adjusted for 22-inch to 28-inch wheels.
- Durable – well-built aluminum kickstand that won’t break the bank.
- Easy to install – attaches conveniently to the chainstays.
5. EVO Axle Mount Kickstand for 16 in. Wheels (Best Kids Kickstand)
- Material: Steel
- Weight: 16oz
Fitting a kickstand to a kid’s bike is a great way to protect the fragile components and keep the bike in good condition for longer. This is especially true if you hope to pass it on to your younger kids as they grow into it.
The EVO Axle Mount Kickstand is a simple, hard-wearing kickstand that might just do the trick.
- Sturdy – the steel construction can withstand the abuse only a child can dish out.
- Great for 16-inch wheels – not every stand will work with kids’ bikes but this one definitely will.
- Easy installation – mounts directly on to the axle.
Best Center Mount Kickstands
1. Ursus Jumbo Double Leg Kickstand (Best Double Leg)
- Material: Aluminum
- Weight: 45oz
The Ursus Jumbo is a sturdy kickstand that has been made with heavy touring bikes in mind. The feet fold down reassuringly to a 14-inch (or 18-inch when the legs are expanded) stance which helps to keep the bike steady even on uneven ground.
When folded, the feet have plenty of offset from the pedal stroke whilst still giving plenty of clearance for thicker tires.
This is a stand that is built to last!
- Sturdy – the maximum load weight makes this a great choice for tourers. It is also great for the additional weight of e-bikes.
- Expanding legs – compact on the bike when folded but the expandable legs offer extra stability when down.
- Compatibility – suitable for bikes with 24-inch to 28-inch wheels.
2. Greenfield Kickstand (Best Single Leg Center Mount Stand)
- Material: Metal alloy
- Weight: 8oz
The Greenfield Kickstand is a great option for riders on a budget. It might not be adjustable but it would pair well with a trusty commuter bike. It is easy to install and sturdy enough to hold moderately loaded bikes.
- Great for 26-inch wheels – works best with 26-inch wheels but can be cut down to the right length.
- Lightweight – won’t add much weight to your bike set-up.
- Great value – about as cheap as it gets for a kickstand.
3. AMS Kickstand (Best Portable Kickstand)
- Material: Aluminum
- Weight: 3oz
The All Mountain Style (AMS) Kickstand is for cyclists that love actually useful gadgets.
Instead of being permanently attached to your frame, the AMS kickstand slips over the pedal crank and can then be broken down into a package that will easily fit inside your jersey pocket.
Perfect for capturing the classic bike shot for social media.
- Adjustable – easy to get the perfect length for your bike.
- Discrete – folds down when not in use to fit inside your jersey pocket.
- Safe – since it is detachable there is no risk of impalement (perceived or real)
4. Electra GO! Dual Leg Adjustable Kickstand (Best Trek Kickstand)
The Trek Electra Go! Kickstand is designed to work with the brand’s range of electric bikes and as a result, is a suitably sturdy kickstand that can hold the additional weight of electric bikes.
- Sturdy – designed for the extra weight of e-bikes
- Adjustable – adaptable for bikes with 24-inch to 29-inch wheels.
- Easy to install – comes with easy to mount bracket.
5. Schwinn Bike Stand (Best Schwinn Stand)
This Schwinn Bike Stand comes with an easy to install fixture to mount it right in the center of the bike behind the bottom bracket. The build quality is excellent and the action is reassuringly smooth.
Overall, this is a great value kickstand option for 20-inch to 27-inch bikes.
- Adjustable – the telescopic leg works well with bikes with 20-inch to 27-inch wheels.
- Smooth pivot – kid-friendly stand that is popped back up with minimal effort.
- Great value – inexpensive stand that doesn’t compromise on build quality.
Do I Need A Kickstand For My Bike?
Kickstands are one of those bike accessories that you don’t realize you need until you use one. After that, it is hard to go back to living without it.
For cycle tourers, kickstands are as essential as panniers and a cool beard. Sure, you could prop your bike against a wall, a table, or an innocent bystander but these might be in short supply in the middle of nowhere.
A kickstand makes it much more convenient to pack and unpack on the go. The main problem here will be finding a kickstand that can handle the weight of a fully laden touring bike.
If you own a hybrid or a cruiser then you are likely to be hopping from place to place and always looking for somewhere to rest your bike whilst you grab a coffee. A kickstand solves this problem.
Kids’ bikes usually come with kickstands as they are a great way to teach kids to take care of their bikes and should stop them from throwing them down and buckling the delicate rear derailer.
Given that road cyclists resent putting even a saddle bag on their frame, which is at least vastly practical, it should come as no surprise that they turn their nose up at kickstands. They add weight and are not made for carbon frames.
Even stopping is an insult to some road cyclists, making a kickstand a preposterous accessory. Pedal up to your local club ride with a kickstand and be prepared for comments.
But there is a sub-culture of road cyclists who might find a kickstand useful. That is the Instagram cyclists, known more for their epic photos than their epic rides. Kickstand makers have spotted a gap in the market and you can now get discrete, detachable kickstands to help create the perfect social post.
Types Of Kickstand (Rear Mount Vs. Center Mount)
Rear Mount (Side Stand)
For touring bikes, where most of the weight is over the rear wheel, rear mount kickstands offer more stability due to their wide-angle stance.
Most touring bikes come with integrated KSA-18 mounts where rear kickstands can be added.
Some form of handlebar stabilizer is required when using rear kickstands to keep the front end stable.
Centre Mount (Double Leg Kickstand)
Centre mount kickstands are perhaps the most common and a lot of touring bikes come with an integrated kickstand plate that makes fitting easy and helps to protect the frame.
Centre mount kickstands come in a single leg and double leg option.
Centre mount kickstands tend to be a bit stronger than rear mount kickstands and help to spread the weight of the bike evenly, especially on bumpy surfaces. The main drawback is that they interfere with the pedals when deployed which can be a pain for doing repairs on the go.
Portable kickstands are a new breed of kickstand. Instead of being permanently attached to the frame, they can be dismantled and stored easily when not in use.
They are a lightweight solution and offer a lot of flexibility.
Video: Is A Portable Kickstand Right For You?
Kickstand Features To Look Out For
Bike Frame Compatibility
The type of kickstand that you can use might ultimately be limited by your bike frame.
Most touring bikes come with integrated kickstand plates near the pedals for attaching center mount kickstands.
They might also have KSA-18 braze-ons for directly fastening rear mount kickstands.
How much weight the kickstand can prop up is an important consideration, especially if you are touring with a fully-loaded bike. Since most of the weight on touring bikes is over the rear wheel, it makes sense to look for a sturdy, reliable rear mount kickstand.
For normal, everyday cycling around town most kickstands are fine for holding up the bike itself but you should always check the manufactures specs.
Most tourers will tell you that, if your total load on the bike is less than 40kg then an 18kg kickstand weight limit will be good. Anything above 40kg and you should opt for a beefier 25kg kickstand.
Even if you are riding a fully loaded touring bike, you should still keep one eye on the weight of all the components on your bike. Every gram you add will have to be paid for on long climbs.
You can get great quality, lightweight kickstands that can still support a surprising amount of weight. Even if you are just pootling from coffee shop to coffee shop, your legs will thank you for choosing a lightweight kickstand.
Not every bike is the same size so it makes sense for a kickstand to have some inbuilt adjustability.
With adjustable kickstands, the length can be altered easily, without any tools, to get the bike sitting at an optimum 15-degrees when resting on the kickstand.
Adjustable kickstands also tend to be a better option if your bike doesn’t have KSA mounting points on your frame.
Since not everyone wants to ride around with a kickstand attached to their frame permanently, especially if you do most of your riding on skinny tires, but there are times when a kickstand would be useful. Enter the new breed of portable kickstands.
Portable kickstands usually have a telescopic leg or can be dismantled into a package, small enough to fit into your jersey pocket.
They are quick to install when you need to capture that awesome Instagram shot of your bike or for propping your bike up at the Sunday club run coffee stop.
How To Install A Kickstand On A Bike
Installing a kickstand on your bike is thankfully one of those jobs that don’t require the expertise of the local bike shop. If you know your way around a wrench then you shouldn’t have any issue installing a kickstand.
- Pick the right kickstand for your riding style and your bike, either a center mount or rear mount kickstand. Portable kickstands don’t require any installation by their very nature.
- For rear mount kickstands, play with the position to make sure that the kickstand doesn’t interfere with pedaling and that there is plenty of clearance.
- Once you are happy with the position, connect the kickstand bracket. The flanges on the bracket stop it from hitting the shifter cable that runs around the bottom of the bottom bracket.
- Align your kickstand and tighten the bolt. This is usually one with a 14mm wrench.
- Check the positioning once fully tight. The bike should rest at an angle of around 15-degrees when resting on the kickstand.
Video: Kickstand Installation
Kickstands: Frequently Asked Questions
Are Bike Kickstands Universal?
For the most part, kickstands can be fitted to any bike but it is important to confirm the length of the leg is ideal for your bike and set-up.
Are Kickstands Dangerous?
Mountain bikers instinctively shy away from kickstands – all it takes is an unfortunate bump on the trail and the kickstand could pop down. It is not easy to ride with a kickstand in this position.
Can You Put Kickstands On Every Type Of Bike?
It is possible to find a kickstand for every type of bike but that doesn’t mean you should go ahead and attach one. For road cyclists, a kickstand is simply an unnecessary weight and drag penalty.
If you have an e-bike, check that the kickstand can support the additional weight.
Unless you function only to be crowned king of the Strava leader board, it is safe to say that every other cyclist would benefit from the addition of a simple kickstand to their bike.
Once you use one for the first time to prop your bike, you will wonder what you did without it for so long. It is yet another way that bike tourers lead the way.
If you need to hold up a heavy touring bike, the lightweight, rear-mounted Pletscher Zoom ESGE Kickstand shouldn’t let you down.
If you prefer a center-mount kickstand, the Ursus Jumbo has been built with the demands of touring cyclists in mind.
The All Mountain Style (AMS) Kickstand is a rare breed – a useful gadget. Stick it in your jersey pocket when not in use and pop on the bike when there is no convenient wall around. Whisper it, but could this be the kickstand that even road cyclists could love?