Researching the different ride heights of motorcycles can be a difficult task when you’re a particular size. Most manufacturers will have the seat height outlined in an area that is difficult to find. 

I’ve done the research and compiled a list of the seat heights of the Best Beginner Motorcycles for 2020 so you don’t need to do any digging. In this article, we are going to cover seat heights, how manufacturers measure seat height and some more helpful tips about seat height. Let’s get to it!

Breakdown of Beginner Motorcycle Seat Heights 2020 

2020YamahaV STAR 25027686
2020HondaRebel 50027.2691
2020HondaRebel 30027.2691
2020Harley DavidsonSTREET 50028711
2020KawasakiNINJA 40030.9785
2020KawasakiNINJA 65031.1790
2020KawasakiZ125 PRO31.7805
2020KawasakiVERSYS-X 30032.1815
2020KTMRC 39032.3820
2020KTM390 DUKE32.3820
2020KTM390 ADVENTURE33.7856

What is Seat Height?

Seat height is a measurement, usually in inches or mm, from the lowest point of the motorcycle’s saddle (seat) to the ground with the motorcycle in the upright position. This is measured to help riders understand how tall the motorcycle is prior to purchasing.

Seat Height and Motorcycle Type

Seat height is directly coordinated with motorcycle type. 

Cruisers will typically have low seat heights. Rather than sitting on a cruiser, you tend to feel as though you’re sitting in it. This is why they’re a popular pick for new riders or riders who are shorter. 

Sport bikes are designed to be fast, aerodynamic, and nimble to allow you to lean in the corners. What this means is that a sport bike’s seat height will typically be higher than a cruiser and definitely not the most comfortable seating position. Be aware of this and be sure to have a seat on a sportbike if you’re set on purchasing one. 

Naked bikes are sport bikes that are undressed of their fairings. Although they seem to be quite lower, the opposite is true. They are normally the same ride height as their sportbike counterparts and are just as comfortable.

Standard styling is a mix of form and function. They aren’t designed with a particular focus and therefore have a wide range of characteristics and seat heights.

Dual-Sport motorcycles are the height champions in the segment. The seat height is usually a little taller because of the need for off-road clearance. If you are in the market for a dual sport motorcycle, be sure to head into your local dealership to sit or ride one prior to purchasing. 

What motorcycle has the lowest seat height?

Cruisers will typically have a much shorter seat height than the others due to their frame construction. Based on our 2020 picks, the motorcycle with the lowest seat height is the Yamaha V Star 250. The motorcycle has a seat height of 27 inches or 686 millimeters.

What motorcycles are good for short riders?

Cruisers are normally the best type of motorcycle for short riders. Their seat height, comfort and various different stylings make them an appealing choice. Although they are normally best, there are ways for you to lower a sport, naked, standard, or dual sport motorcycle to fit your height. Be sure to discuss the ability to lower a motorcycle with a trusted motorcycle mechanic or dealership.  

What height should my motorcycle seat be?

As a beginner, I would recommend sitting upright on a motorcycle and ensure you’re flat footed or able to touch the ground on both sides with the balls of your feet. Motorcycles are not light nor forgiving. If you roll up to a stop light and can’t control that weight, the motorcycle will tip over. Furthermore, you will be more confident on a motorcycle you can control.

In order to see what you may look like on a motorcycle with your specific measurements, there was a tool developed called the Motorcycle Ergonomics Simulator to show how you will look on various types of motorcycles. This tool will help you get an idea of what type of motorcycle you may want to purchase. Although it isn’t up to date, the information is relevant to the motorcycles listed in this article.

Can motorcycle seat height be adjusted?

Of course seat height can be adjusted. There are a few methods of adjustments that can lower your ride height once you’ve purchased a motorcycle. 

Most motorcycles are set up for a 180 pound rider. This is assuming that they’re set up properly when shipped and delivered. This is not always the case, so be sure to check with the dealership prior to taking delivery. Checking your suspension sag is important as well to ensure you know how your suspension reacts and if there is room to modify the front and rear suspension. Please be careful when modifying the suspension on a motorcycle as it can have some very drastic consequences. 

One way to lower your seat height is to take foam right out of the seat itself or purchase aftermarket seat pads. Some riders will remove the covering on their seat, extract and mold the foam to their liking and then reupholster the seat back to new. Others will purchase an aftermarket seat pad that removes a couple inches of essential seat height. 

Should your feet touch the ground on a motorcycle?

As a beginner rider, there is nothing more important than to have both of your feet touch the ground when the motorcycle is upright. It is preferable to have both feet flat on the ground but if you can have both balls of your feet on the ground, it will suffice.

The reason why it is important is because once you are moving at a slow rate of speed, it is difficult for most new riders to keep their balance. This can and will lead you to dropping your motorcycle.

If you have taken a motorcycle safety course, I would say either or will be fine for you. What they teach at most training companies is how to maneuver your motorcycle during slow speeds. This is when most new motorcyclists will drop their motorcycle.

 If you can control your motorcycle while coming to a stop, have balance on one foot in the ready position, and you have experience with slow speed control, you will be okay to tip toe with both feet in the upright position on a motorcycle. 


No matter whether you’re purchasing a new or used motorcycle, you must be confident in yourself to balance and hold the weight of your motorcycle. Hop on and take a look at your feet. Do they touch the ground? Can you control the weight of the motorcycle? Do you feel confident? If so, enjoy riding your new motorcycle!