Road Cycling – The Basics #1

Road cycling has been a hobby verging on a passion of mine for the last few years. But while I have a number of years of experience, it’s easy to forget that there are beginners just starting out.

Sometimes it’s important to go back to basics and help those taking their first steps on the road.

And with the terrible cost to cyclists on the road, a few ideas to help them get the best out of their cycling experience.

Firstly, Be Seen…

A high percentage of cyclists are involved in accidents simply because no one could see them.

We are always taught as children to be seen and not heard, and cycling is no different. During the day it may not be a big issue, but for anyone cycling at night, there are lights should be ON and reflective clothing that should be worn at all times. With the amount of traffic, that is now on the roads, sometimes it is useful to have lights on during the day time as well. 

Remember that when cycling in the road, drivers won’t always take into account that you’re new to cycling. By taking no risks you not only help yourself, but you help the drivers around you.

Owning the Right Bike…

Buying your bike is a decision that cannot be rushed. Your bike will become part of you, travelling everywhere you go and helping you along the way.

Young cyclists may want to choose the best looking bike, but it’s about the one that suits you best. Is it the right size? Is it built well and will you be able to trust it? Some main points to consider when picking a bike are the brakes, steering, chain and tyres.

What to Wear…

We’ve briefly discussed reflective clothing, but that is being seen, what about clothes for making cycling easier and more comfortable? Though checking the weather is important for cycling, lightweight clothes are often a good choice no matter what time of year it is. As long as they are windproof and rain proof for cycling during the winters months.

Remember the old cycling quote: There is no wrong weather; only wrong clothes.

Wear layers,these will help to stop you being overheated and make your journey more enjoyable. These clothes should also be tight fitted. Baggy clothes will often get caught in the chain and force you to stop on numerous occasions.

Lastly, when wearing a backpack, make sure that this is properly fitted and won’t fall or slip during your journey.

These are just the basic tips for beginner cyclists, but will help you in being safe and comfortable on the road. When starting a new hobby it’s always important to focus on the basics, before moving on to more advanced tasks.

More thoughts to come…

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