So you think you can ride a bicycle?

This post includes top tips to make your bike ride go smoothly

Of course I can ride a bike!

Like most people I learnt to ride a bicycle when I was about four years old. I rode a bike with no wheels, a bike with three wheels, a bike with  two wheels and two additional stabalising wheels and eventually a bike with just two wheels. After that I rode a Barbie bike, a BMX bike, a foldable bike and a bike with a basket on the front and then when I hit puberty I decided high heels and taxis were cooler and didn’t ride again until well into my twenties. Does this sound familiar?

So now I’m (ahem) in my thirties, I love going for a bike ride and I always thought I knew what I was doing until recently.

It all started with my boyfriend who is a well seasoned cyclist and has been taking me in the direction of mountains and for increasingly longer distances.

Today he presented me with padded pants and padded leggins (or pussy protectors as I have nicknamed them). He said from now on it’s function over fashion!

There was an unprecedented amount of padding bunched up between my thighs! I felt like I was wearing a nappy 😦

Once I got going I realised my pussy protectors were like seat cushions!

This was not the only thing I learnt about cycling so I have compiled a list for anyone else who thinks they can cycle but could do with a few tips…

The top cycling tips I learnt today:

  • Check your bike for debris in the chain, air in the tyres and clean brakes. Also make sure the bolts are not loose.
  • Take a backpack and don’t wrap your tops or jackets around your waist because it can be dangerous if they come loose and wrap around the wheel.
  • Place the ball of your foot on the pedals and make sure all of your foot is on so that none of your energy is wasted.
  • peddleAdjust your bottom off of the seat whenever you can to prevent aches and pains.
  • In fact, change position frequently. It’s so much more comfortable.
  • Be loose. Don’t hunch your shoulders and don’t grip too tight as you will stress out your muscles.
  • Play with your gears on clear empty straights. This is a great way of getting the hang of what they do.
  • Use a high gear for downward slopes and on-road riding and use a low gear for upward slopes.
  • When riding down a steep bumpy hill, brake to slow down, stand on the pedals, lean your bum back and hold the seat between your thighs. This will put weight at the back and stop you from flipping forward.
  • Another tip for those downward hills is to keep your legs and arms slightly bent while standing on the pedals. This will help absorb those bumps.
  • Don’t ever slam on both brakes. Instead go for the back brakes first and do it lightly on and off.
  • If you cannot ride up a steep hill. Get off the bike and wheel it up. Don’t stay on and try and walk it up as the front wheel could pop up and send you falling backwards.
  • Cross the road in a low gear to ensure you have good speed.

So there you are. If you have any more tips feel free to post them in the comment box and don’t forget to follow this blog to join me on my adventures.

See you on the next adventure!

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