Bikes or bicycles are a great method of transportation. It is environmentally friendly, affordable, and practical. Most people start riding a bike from a very early age, and it is very easy to learn to ride. Whether you ride a bicycle as your daily commute, ride it occasionally as a hobby, or go on adventures with your mountain bike, being safe and precautious is essential.
Unfortunately, bicycle accidents are not very rare. Negligence of the rider, not having safety gear, losing focus while riding, not being knowledgeable of the rules and regulations of roads and highways, and so on causes accidents.
15 Safety Tips for Cycling
Besides traditional bikes, electric pedal bikes are getting very popular these days. With the increased speed and features of e-bikes, the cyclist needs to take extra precautions while riding. Apart from being aware of the high speed, all the other safety measures for traditional bikes and e-bikes are pretty much the same.
Here, we have shared 15 tips we believe every cyclist should know about, regardless of the terrain they are riding on.
- Always Wear Helmet
Regardless of the distance or path, you should always wear a helmet while riding a bike. Moreover, you must wear a helmet when riding on a road with heavy traffic, rugged terrains, or when you are learning to ride a bike.
Invest in a good quality helmet. A helmet can save you to a great extent if you ever face a horrific accident.
- Stay on the Right Path
If there is a bike lane, be on that lane. Otherwise, try to be in the right lane. Try riding in a straight line so other vehicles can predict your movement. Being predictable with your motion can be very helpful on busy roads.
- Use Hand Signals
Apart from being on the right path, you should also learn and use hand signals. You should make eye contact with other drivers to ensure they see you. Try avoiding blind spots of other vehicles. Additionally, use hand signals for any turns, lane changes, or if you are slowing down.
- Install Rear View Mirrors
You should check your back before turning or slowing down. However, installing a rearview mirror can make it a little easier. Even if you are sure of the position and speed of the vehicles in your back through a rearview mirror, you should double-check by looking over your shoulder and using hand signals.
- Use Lights
You should use front and rear lights with your bicycle. If your bike does not come with them, you can purchase them and have them attached to your bike. This is very important if you ride at night or in low-lighted areas. Furthermore, in many places, having lights on the bike is required by the law.
- Wear Reflective Clothing
Make sure you are visible to other drivers. Wear reflective or fluorescent clothing, especially during the night, dawn, or cloudy days. You can wear an entire outfit or a reflective vest over other clothes.
You can also consider making your bike visible with reflective stickers. Wearing a reflecting helmet can be a great way to stay visible on the road.
- Ride with Partners
Riding with one or more people is not only more fun but is also beneficial too. More people means better visibility for the drivers. Moreover, in case of any issues or emergencies, one can help the other.
- Learn Rules and Regulations
In most cases, there are not many restrictions for bikers. Yet there are some areas where there might be some restrictions for bikers. Be sure to learn about those before you ride to places.
If you have an e-bike, knowing the rules is more important. In many areas, there are a few restrictions for e-bikes that might not apply to traditional bikes.
- Always Stay Alert
You should always stay alert while riding. You need to listen to everything happening around you. Do not use headphones, talk to others, or get distracted in any way.
Moreover, you should also focus on the road. You should look out for other vehicles, potholes, a pile of leaves, etc.
- Wear Sun Protection Gears
Wear sun-protective eyewear; otherwise, you might not see the road ahead clearly. Also, wear sunscreen on the exposed areas of your body, especially on the back of your neck and hand. These parts get exposed to the sun the most. If possible, wear long-sleeved clothing to protect your hands from the sun.
- Be Knowledgeable of the Weather
Before you rush out of the door with your bike, check the weather forecast. No one wants to drench in the rain or ride in a snowstorm. It is essential if the weather in your area changes frequently.
Moreover, you can have a device attached to your bike that tracks the condition of the air, which is very helpful too. You do not want to ride your bike in harsh conditions as it can be extremely difficult as well as risky.
- Carry Drinking Water
Riding a bike is quite an exercise, and you tend to become thirsty. It is better always to carry a water bottle. You never know when you might need water. Furthermore, you can get water bottle holders or cages for your bike at a fraction of the price. Therefore, carrying it will not be a problem.
- Carry Essentials
You should carry essential things with you at all times. Carrying a patch kit can come out to be handy. Also, you should have your ID, some cash, and your cellphone with you no matter where you are going. You can also carry a first-aid kit, raincoat, etc., depending on the route of your journey.
- Look Out for Different Roads
Look out for any road hazards. While riding a bike on various roads and far distances, you may encounter various road conditions. Always be prepared for those rocky roads, sand, puddles, potholes, ice, etc.
- Take Care of Your Bike
For the longevity of your bike, you need to take proper care of it. You should do routine maintenance of your bicycle. If any problem occurs, you should fix it immediately.
Apart from how to ride a bike, there are several things you should know once you get a new bike. You should learn about your bike’s features, gears, controls, etc. Also, you need to know the rules and regulations about riding a bike in certain areas. Moreover, you should always follow the safety tips and be precautious to avoid unwanted incidents.