Once you have gotten the hang of bike commuting, you’ll quickly forget how overwhelming it felt the first time you hopped on a bike and headed off into the streets. However, riding out for the first time can be very uncomfortable, frightening, and even dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. As a new cyclist, you should know that cycling isn’t challenging and that there are some things to keep in mind to make your cycling experience as safe and comfortable as possible.
Here are a few guides for every new cycle commuter to stay safe when riding your bike in public.
1. Know The Basics Of Bike Maintenance
Understanding essential bike maintenance will make your cycling life much easier and help you get the most out of your bike. You don’t have to be late for work just because of a puncture. Buy your tools and learn how to fix every issue on the go. Your bike is your companion, so you must look after it very well.
2. Have A Cycling Companion
As a new cyclist, finding somebody more experienced to ride with is always wise, as this will help you fight the anxiety. Look for a coworker, friend, or family member who cycles regularly, and join them on a ride around town. Allow them to lead the way so your focus can be on getting comfortable.
3. Plan Ahead
If you’re planning to ride alone, look for a map of bike lanes or paths in your town and create a route that will keep you on the protected bike routes and quiet roads. If there is no bike route map available, contact a bike shop or the local cycling organization for information on the best routes in town.
4. Use A Reliable Bike
When it comes to cycling, getting a commuter bike that does the job and doesn’t draw attention to itself is always better. This means getting a bike with strong tires and rugged mudguards. These are the right kinds of bikes that’ll suit your needs.
5. Get Bike Security
Bike theft is widespread and is one of the main reasons people are reluctant to cycle to work. Therefore, to secure your bike, you need insurance that offers full coverage for rad power bikes or any other bike you use. You can also buy a very secure lock that’ll help keep your bike safe.
6. Eat Well Before Each Ride
Cycling every day is quite difficult, so ensure your body gets enough nutrients each time you eat. Eat energy bars, porridge, or fruits at work rather than taking drinks from the vending machine. Eating well will help you remain on track, making you productive and less compulsive.
7. Plan Clean-Up Time
There’s nothing worse than sitting down at your desk drenched in sweat after cycling to work in the morning. Understandably, most workplace facilities are often inadequate. However, if you have a very long and vigorous commute, you should first create the time to take a shower at work. This might seem odd at first, but you’ll get used to it as time goes on. Don’t forget to bring a lightweight camping towel to work so you can dry yourself.
8. Follow The Rules
When cycling, go in the direction of traffic and obey the traffic lights. The bike-specific law created to keep cyclists safe and reduce congestion is called the Idaho Stop Law. As a biker, the only way to keep yourself and others safe are by obeying traffic laws whenever you’re on the road. These rules are in place to protect cyclists and drivers.
9. Be Aware Of Your Surroundings
Be conscious of vehicles, pedestrians, and other cyclists around you. Before making any turn on the road, check first, and also pay attention to the turn signals from cars in front of you. Knowing your surroundings will save you from being involved in a crash.
10. Use Hand Signals
When cycling, it is best to do so in a manner that is predictable to those behind you. Because if they can predict what you are about to do, they’ll also find it easy to plan their movements. Use hand signals when stopping or turning to avoid causing a crash or creating confusion.
As a cyclist, when turning right, you need to bend your left elbow and raise your fingers skyward, and while turning left, you’ll need to point your arm straight out to the left. Then when you plan to stop, you do this by pointing your fingers down while bending your left elbow.
Every rider has a different commuting experience. Cycling regularly can be exhilarating and eventually become a part of your lifestyle. Therefore, to fully enjoy your riding experience, make sure you are mentally and physically prepared before you begin your bike commute.