None of us should find it surprising that more and more folks have rediscovered biking in a big way. Especially considering the sky high gas prices, environmental awareness, and more fit conscious people.
All these things combined have brought back the popularity of the bike, not only for fitness, but for everyday commuting to work and everywhere else for that matter, as stated in the June 2010 issue of Body and Soul. Cycling rates have doubled over past recent years mostly because many people feel comfortable using this mode of transportation combined with all of the aforementioned circumstances. If you’re one of these people you’ll likely want to know the following biking tips to keep you safe while your pedaling.
Car Rules Rule
Be sure to strictly follow all the rules of the road for cars if you’ll be frequently riding your bike in heavy traffic and light traffic alike. Stop at all lights as well as signs, and make the effort to always use your signal turns even if it seems as though it’s something you could skip. Ride your bike in the same direction as the traffic for the most safety, and be sure to give all pedestrians the right of way.
Ride in a “Door Free” Zone
Barreling into the open door of a parked car is probably one of the biggest dangers that all cyclists face. Be sure to give yourself plenty of berth between parked cars and your bike. You may increase your odds for safety by riding on the left because there will always be a driver, but not always a passenger.
Keep Yourself Visible
Try to avoid pulling your bike up to a light or stop sign directly into the blind spot of those next to you in a car. It’s a better idea to stop way ahead of the car so you’ll be more visible to the traffic that’s on all sides.
Wear Your Helmet
It isn’t the law and it looks awful but the worst case scenario leads to full body paralysis or worse so keep that in mind when you want to skip this, especially for those of you that are out there commuting to work daily in heavy traffic.
Use a Light
If you’re out at night or dusk put a flashing light on the rear of your bike along with a helmet or bike mounted type of headlight to make you easily visible.
Nothing is more important for a regular cyclist than safety. Be sure to practice these tips to keep yourself safe and free of unnecessary injury.
June 2010 issue of Body and Soul