How to Ride a Bike the Right Way

Article posted in: Lifestyle HealthyHowTo

Bikes offer an amazing combination of things we all want and need: heart-healthy exercise, basic transportation, and perhaps most important, fun. Remember the sense of freedom and possibility you felt when you were a kid and you hopped on your bike? It’s all still there. There’s no need to be all fancy and make like a Tour de France rider, especially if you’re just looking to take a spin. Here are some basic tips to make your rides safe and fun: 

Tune It Up. Make sure your bike is ready for you. You can take it to a local bike shop and ask for a basic tune up, or do a few basic things yourself. First, make sure the tires are properly inflated. Check on the sidewall of the tire for the recommended inflation—the numbers in front of the letters “PSI.” Use a bike pump with a pressure gauge to reach the right number. Next, check the brakes to make sure everything is working properly. Finally, straddle the bike and make sure you can safely and comfortably put your feet on the ground before heading out.

Wear a Helmet. It may have felt great as a kid to let the breeze blow back your hair, but safety trumps style. Wear a properly-fitting helmet, and buckle the strap.

Ride With the Traffic. A bicycle is a vehicle, and has the same rights and responsibilities on the road as a car. If you’re riding on the road, pedal with the traffic. Stay to the right, and obey all traffic signs and laws. If you’re riding on recreation paths or trails, use common sense: stay to the right, announce your presence to runners and walkers, and share the space.

Enjoy! Remember, you’re out for fun and some exercise. There’s no need to race. Find a comfortable pace and enjoy the scenery and the motion!