Best gifts for cyclists that gearheads will actually use

Let me stop you from falling into one of the worst traps when buying a gift for a cyclist. Back away from the mugs and socks festooned with bikes, and drop the shirt emblazoned with the word “Cyclologist” (yes, I really did get this one year.) As someone who rides between 80 and 150 miles a week, I’m here to tell you that the best gift for the cyclist in your life is practical gear that can help make the ride smoother — or perhaps just a little more fun.

Here are some of my favorite road-tested items that would make a great addition to the gear pile every cyclist owns. 

Pro Bike Tool

Every cyclist already owns a set of tools, but when you run into problems on a ride, portability is key. There’s not a lot of space on most bikes, so being able to keep your tools in the smallest possible package matters. The Pro Bike Tool Bike Multitool has 17 tools that work with nearly every bike, including mini screwdrivers and a hex key. It’s so small it can almost fit into a wallet (it’ll easily fit into a backpack) and is a great addition to any existing toolkit that might be stored on the bike itself.

Rick Broida/CNET

One thing every cyclist absolutely needs after a good ride is some time to recover. That usually means drinking lots of water, eating something rich in protein and taking care of your muscles. Most cyclists have a routine after a ride, but a good massage gun makes all the difference in the world. We have a great collection of the best massage guns, but the most compact and portable you’ll find right now is the Theragun Mini. If you want a great massage gun that can go with you anywhere, this is the best choice.


Fun wheel lights like these WheelBrightz are fantastic for showing some flair when doing rides on special occasions, or just making sure you’re seen. You can use them to stand out on dark solo rides, or to make you and your fellow riders feel like part of a pack (especially if your co-riders are kids or young at heart). WheelBrightz lights deliver light in a ton of different colors to make the wheels truly shine. 

Russell Holly

Headphones are complicated things when on a bike. If they are too quiet, the world around the bike can drown them out. If they’re overly loud or block out ambient sounds, you risk not being able to hear vehicles around you. The best kind of headphones for cyclists deliver audio while also letting you keep tabs on oncoming traffic. These Aftershokz Aeropex bone-conduction headphones vibrate sound into your eardrums through points on your skull and make a huge difference in how you enjoy music or podcasts or audiobooks when you ride. And if you’re going to give the gift of sound to a cyclist, these are the best.


Polar bottles are common among cyclists, and for good reason. They’re reasonably priced, the insulation works reasonably well and the quick grab ring makes it easy to pull the bottles out of the bike cage when you need a quick drink. You can get Polar bottles almost anywhere, but for a special gift, go with a custom bottle made with either a logo or a totally unique design wrapping the bottle. The prices vary depending on the size you get, but most bottle cages support the larger 24-ounce bottle with no problem and those start at $15. Trust me, you’ll get a big smile out of this one.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

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