Cycling is a versatile activity, from keeping your carbon footprint on the lower end to ensuring excellent fitness. You don’t really have to be from Copenhagen, the cyclist’s city, to know about its lasting benefits. However, it’s obvious to find oneself scared at the thought of an accident while road cycling.
To answer the question, road cycling is safe. The fear of traffic and high inclined slopes might create chaos in your head about the risk in road cycling. You should find peace in that cycling on roads is not a dangerous activity if you’re careful.
In fact, you’re more likely to build your health better than sustain an injury with road cycling. Don’t trust the words, but take a look at the stats. The World Health Organisation supports 150 minutes of cycling for an average to keep a person in the best shape.
However, much like any commutation activity on the road, cycling requires you to take a few precautions for your safety and protection. Once you have considered the cautions, cycling would not be a steep affair for you!
What Would You Consider as Road Cycling?
Cycling enables you to take part in adventurous and exciting activities like off-trail tours, beach rides, and wilderness visits. However, these activities are far from road cycling as they already involve the risk factor with the exciting activities.
Paved surface streets and dedicated tracks are the guidelines for a road cyclist. You can choose to go touring and race as a pedal enthusiast. However, long extended bike rides and recreational exercises take the front seat as its definition for road cycling.
Whether for exercising, messengering, or errand running, you’re a verified road cyclist if you spend hours on flat road rides! That’s why you must carry a few tips up your sleeve to keep the protection meter running!
Before You Hop on Your Bike
Now that your confusion is out of the picture, you must be brimming with excitement to ride your bike. Wait Up!
You still need to do a pre-ride check and ensure that:
- Your ride clothes are apt for the weather to keep you cool or warm as per the need.
- You need a well-fitted, reflective patched, strong helmet to minimize the harm in case of impact.
- You bring superior quality waterproof jackets and goggles to keep you dry and efficient even during rough weather.
- You wear overshoes and gloves to keep away the splashes and slippages during your ride.
How Can You Maximize Your Safety with Road Cycling?
If your days look like they need an extension on top of 24 hours, cycling is the multi-tool you need. From improving your mental health to helping you multitask with errands and exercises, bike rides find your routes. To let cycling help you with mental peace, too, you need to fix the safety concerns with these tips in mind!
1. Position Yourself Right
Visibility is your priority while riding a bike on the road. Whether you find yourself stuck in a traffic jam or during night rides, you must have room to navigate. For this reason, you must take a central position in the road lane.
The position will ensure that you’re in the line of sight of any overtakers or road-users. Additionally, you should always be aware of the open manholes or edges around you to avoid slippages during road cycling.
2. Keep Your Eyes and Ears on the Road
Potholes, a vehicle without headlight indicators, or fallen branches are some of the hazard cues you need to watch out for. Taking a note of the early signs of a vehicle’s movement helps you stay away from a potential accident.
You will also have to be on the lookout for sudden gate openings of larger vehicles. It’s best if you maintain some distance during road cycling with the cars parked on the roads.
3. Announce Your Moves
You don’t have to raise alarms on the roads, but you can make it clear to others about your turns. Whether you’re at a junction or crossroads, ensure that you can signal the direction of the turn. Additionally, you need to keep a tab on the traffic coming from behind for secure maneuverability.
Note: It’s best if you avoid moving to the extreme side of the direction in which you’re going to turn. For example, while going right, ensure that you’re around the center and not on the far right of the road.
1. Is riding a bike safer than we fear?
Riding a bike with precautions is one of the safest options for commuting on the road. The reasons for accidents involving bicycles are the lack of proper protection, inefficient driving of other motor vehicles, and lack of road infrastructure. On top of it, any safety ends at the non-willingness to take measurements before the ride.
Even though road accidents with cyclists make for a considerable portion of mishaps, you can avoid them with preparation. Learning the road rules, getting the protective gear, and wearing reflective clothes are the steps in the right direction.
2. What dangers do you need to look out for while cycling on roads?
Whether you’re advocating sustainable mobility or choosing cycling over running for exercise, you must watch out for risks on the road.
By avoiding the causes of dangers, your ride can be safer and smoother. Keep on the lookout for:
- Aggressive driving by any vehicle is a sign of a potential accident.
- No maneuverability around turns and junctions is a way to attract clashes and hits.
- No pre-ride checks hinder your smooth riding experience and can even cause accidents.