Whether you are an experienced cyclist or have only recently started riding, you will need to know the essentials when it comes to staying safe on your bike.
Wear Protective Gear
You must wear a helmet when riding a bike. Make sure that your helmet meets safety regulations and replace it as soon as you notice even the slightest damage. Helmets are designed to absorb the impact of a collision to protect you from serious head injuries. Choose the right size and adjust the strap under your chin so that the helmet fits snugly and comfortably.
Get to Know Your Bicycle
Choose a bike that meets your unique needs. Do you need a mountain bike if all you want to use it for is commuting to work? Research the different types of bicycles and which ones appeal to you. Places like steedbikes.com have a range of bicycles to choose from. It is useful to understand how your bike works in case you need to repair it. Be prepared to handle the frustration of a puncture every now and then by practicing with a repair kit in advance.
Know the Rules of the Road
Trying to cycle on the road before understanding the rules that all vehicles must abide by will quickly get you into trouble. Learn which parts of the road to cycle on, what different road signs mean, and what signals to use when making a move. You may find it intimidating to cycle alongside larger vehicles like cars and trucks, but if you go at your own pace and aren’t afraid to take up space, you won’t need to worry. Many cyclists make the mistake of sticking too close to the edge of the road to allow cars to pass, but this can encourage unsafe passing with a greater risk of collision. Where cycling on the road is allowed, it is permitted for cyclists to ride in the middle of the lane. This way, you are clear to other road users and can only be passed at safe points.
Stay Visible to Other Road Users
Wearing dark clothing with no reflectors is a great way to cause an accident. Even in broad daylight, you should make being visible to other road users your main priority. This means having the correct lights on your bike, front and rear reflectors, and bright clothing. Reflective vests or helmets are also a good idea.
Keep Your Wits About You
One of the most important tips for any cyclist is to stay alert and pay attention to your surroundings at all times. Since you will be travelling at speed, you need to hone your spatial awareness to avoid cycling into another cyclist, a pedestrian, or a car. For the sake of your own safety and the safety of others, focus on your proximity to other stationary and moving objects.
When you know how to stay safe, cycling is one of the most efficient and enjoyable ways of getting around.