Follow these important rules of safe cycling:
- *Always wear a helmet (you will not be allowed on the route without one)
- Hydrate. It is important to drink every five to 15 minutes for healthy hydration. Drink at least one bottle for every hour you are on the bike (not just water, but also a drink that replaces electrolytes like Gatorade or Powerade).
- When cycling, make a constant effort. Use your gears to climb and descend with an even effort. Your energy will last longer and your fitness will improve consistently (even if you are pedaling downhill). Do not be afraid to change gears. They help you conserve energy and make the ride easier.
- When following another rider, look at his or her hips and beyond. Looking forward gives you the reaction time necessary to adjust for changing conditions. Always ride single file (you can be ticketed for this or worse, be injured please ride single file unless passing) and obey all traffic laws.
- When possible let a rider ahead of you know from which side you are approaching (“On your left”).
- Practice riding in a pack before the event. Call your local bike shop for information about group rides.
- Test your sports drink. Many riders swear by sports drinks, but if you are not used to them they can upset your stomach. Try them out before you are in the middle of a long ride.
- Always carry food because training takes a lot of energy. Steer clear of snacks high in fat.
- Check your tires. Be sure your tires are in good condition and properly inflated before each ride. The proper pressure for your tires is on the side of the tire (around 100 psi for most road tires).
- Familiarize yourself with flat-tire repair. Bring a pump, tube, tire levers, change for a phone call, water and sunscreen, and a rain jacket when needed, along with any cold weather gear you might need. Even if you do not know how to repair a flat, there is normally someone on the spot who can help if you have the proper equipment and supplies.
- Do not depart from normal detailed bike routes and watch for signs.
- Never ride while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Never ride using headsets or headphones.
- Always pass on the left.
More important cycling safety information:
- The League of American Bicyclists, MS Ride Group Cycling Safety Brochure
- The League of American Bicyclists Group Riding Video
Return to the bike MS: bkm/Steelcase Ride Home Page.