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Fitness & Sports

Is Bike Riding for You?

This is one question many people ask themselves these days as they watch avid bike riders zip and zoom around them on busy days when traffic is so impossible you can only silently fume as you sit in your car waiting for that infernal traffic light to turn green.

In the old days, people rode bikes to get from point A to point B and that was that. It was more of a necessity rather than something that helps you lose weight and reduces your stress levels. It wasn’t considered a throwback of some sort – in fact, women in the old days rode bikes even while wearing long skirts so it wasn’t a problem seeing an adult doing something that many thought was for kids.

If you ever wondered how you would look like riding a bike or perhaps if you would even like to ride a bike, then you should probably start by knowing the basics. Bike riding is a simple and cost-free way to have fun, an activity that is easily learned and almost never forgotten. But as it is also considered a sport, you will need to know the best methods and techniques as well as equipment since you just can’t buy the first bike you see without testing it and knowing for sure that it’s the one for you.

For one, you will need to know how to buy a bike, assuming you already know how to ride one of course. You will only need to consider three things: where are you most likely going to ride, your height and your budget. Fortunately, these things are not difficult to research because when you visit online bike shops, you get to browse through a wide array of bike models and styles and find one that interests you. There are also tons of tips, advice and suggestions from bike experts on how to select the right bike for you, one that fits your personality to a T. There are also online bike sizing charts that will tell you how to choose a bike that feels comfortable, with a height that’s just right.

Even if you hadn’t ridden in a while, you will also be able to read up on you can brush up and ride safely while in traffic, in hilly areas and bike trails. And if you didn’t know how beneficial bike riding is for your social life, you might also want to read up on how to join biking communities and organize weekend trips with your neighbors.

Also, you will need to learn the basics of bike maintenance, such as keeping your bikes clean and your chains lubricated. You will also need to learn the safety basics like how to control your bike, the traffic laws, signs and signals, as well as managing the hazards skillfully and the basic protection gear you need to have on while riding. And don’t forget about the essential things you need to have with you when you go out riding, like a bottle of water, a spare tube and a patch kit.

If you feel that all of the above information may be too much for you to process or you don’t have the time or the inclination to learn all of them, then maybe you should just stick to driving. On the other hand, if you love the feel of the wind against your face and the freedom of exploring beautiful surroundings and being able to appreciate breathtaking scenery, then go on and sign up for the next weekend bike trip nearest you and have fun going back to the basics.

Lance Rand