Cycling has become a super popular way for people to get around, whether it is for exercise, to commute from place to place, or for entertainment, there is something for everyone when it comes to cycling.
If you are a new cyclist, it can be an overwhelming hobby to get into. There are so many different styles of bikes, so much gear, and all around so much knowledge to have about cycling. To get you started, here are a few cycling tips that will hopefully ease your mind about getting into it.
1. Safety first
Maybe you don’t need to be told, but it never hurts to repeat it: buy a good helmet and wear it! Here are a few quick facts for you: 74 per cent of fatal bike crashes involved a head injury. 97 per cent of cyclists who died in a bike crash were not wearing a helmet.
Finally, studies have shown that wearing a helmet while cycling can reduce the chances of serious head injury by 70 per cent. It may sound preachy, but this is your first step when getting into cycling.
2. Be comfortable
Cycling might just turn out to be “not your thing” if you don’t put effort into keeping comfortable while you’re doing it. If you’re cycling for exercise or competition, invest in a pair of padded bike shorts.
If it is just a source of entertainment, make sure you have a nice, big, comfortable bike seat. Thin seats are harder on the butt, but are better for racing or speed. As well, one of the biggest parts of being comfortable on a bike is simply having one that fits you well – so make sure to invest in a bike that is the right size for you.
3. Adjust, adjust, adjust
It is both dangerous and seriously uncomfortable to try riding on a badly adjusted bicycle. First, make sure the handlebars are a good height for you. Regardless of whether they are too low or too high, you’re going to feel very awkward trying to ride.
Adjust your seat to the right height. A seat that is too high might make it hard for you to reach the pedals, while a seat that is too low will make you feel scrunched up, and it will be hard to pedal properly.
4. Invest in the right gear
There are some things that will make your biking experience just that much better. One of these things is having the right gear. For example, cycling sunglasses will make sure the elements don’t get into your eyes, which can be annoying, painful, and dangerous. These are things like bugs, rocks, or dirt. They also help protect your eyes against the sun, and act as a windshield against rain.
Other helpful gear may include good breathable clothing that will absorb sweat rather than become dripping wet, and a good pair of grippy shoes that will grip the pedal and won’t slip off.
5. Keep up your bike’s maintenance
One thing that will help keep your cycling safe and fun is to keep your bike well-maintained. A badly maintained bicycle could cause personal injury in some cases, and it will also shorten the life span of the bike.
Some things can be done on your own, like cleaning and oiling your chain. For other things, you may want to take the bike into a bike shop once a year or so, just to have them look at everything and make sure all of the moving parts are in good working order. Also, make sure that your tires are at the proper level of air.