Urban cycling is exciting but scaring to some extent. There are traffic and pedestrians to deal with, that’s why cycling is the city requires some precautions. Yet, there is no need to have fear. Here are 7 useful tips to urban cycling you should know.
1. Choose Your Bike Wisely
Urban bikes are trendy, but they are not suitable for everyone. When choosing the vehicle, make sure it fits your needs.
If you use the bike for some traits of the road and public transportation for others, choose a foldable bike.
Do you have to face long commutes on a daily basis but don’t like the idea to show up at work all sweaty? An e-bike may be a more appropriate vehicle.
City bikes are more suitable for those cycling for leisure during weekends, while a hybrid bike may be an excellent alternative if you want to ride on different trails.
2. Anti-Theft Systems
Whether you’re commuting to work or use the bike for grocery shopping, there may come the time when you’ll have to leave your bike unattended. And trust us, thieves are watching.
To keep your vehicle safe, it’s important to invest in a good anti-theft system. It is also essential to mark your bike in case it gets stolen anyway, to make identification easier.
There are also numerous bike anti-theft methods to use to keep your ride safe or to make it unappealing.
3. Establish Your Routes
Some cities are not exactly bike-friendly. Designated lanes may often lack and in this case, you’ll just have to ride on the road.
If you live in such a city, I recommend establishing cycling routes. Check the map and choose those roads that are less trafficked. Routes that go through parks and gardens are also an alternative to the main roads.
If you don’t know the city by bike, take the first rides during public holidays, when there is less traffic to worry about.
4. Use Sidewalks With Caution
It’s useless to be hypocrites, all urban cyclists use the sidewalks every now and then. Whether it’s to avoid high-density areas or to avoid taking a longer route, sidewalks are often exploited.
So, when using sidewalks, remember they are not designated for cycling. Make sure you apologize to pedestrians if they have to move away to let you pass.
5. Manage Road Riding
If there are no designated cycling lanes in your area, remember that roads are for all traffic participants, including cyclists.
This means you don’t have to feel guilty for keeping a safe distance from the parked cars or for cycling in the middle of the road when you have to change directions or lane. Yes, drivers can complain, but your safety comes first.
Cycling is risky, and you can lower or raise those risks. To avoid unpleasant surprises, check your bike regularly and fix any issues. The most important is to check the brakes and to make sure they work perfectly.
It is also essential to wear cycling equipment at all times. A helmet and a reflective jacket aren’t exactly fashionable, but they can keep you alive.
7. DIY Bike Maintenance
The bike, just like a car, needs regular maintenance to work well. You can either make periodical checks yourself or find a trusted bike shop to assist you.
However, in most cases, you can save money by learning how to replace a tube and adjust a break by yourself.
These urban cycling tips should help you stay safe on the road, but there are many other things to consider when it comes to riding a bike in traffic.
Before hopping on the saddle, don’t forget to check the road regulations in your area and to follow any safety guidelines to prevent avoidable accidents.
If you have other urban cycling tips you’d like to share with us, I look forward to reading your comments.