Lockdown due to the Coronavirus has resulted in the postponement of most youth sports as well as decreased motor vehicle traffic, which has led to an increased interest in bicycle rides. For families who have been forced to spend time indoors, bicycle rides offer an attractive and safe option to explore the neighborhood. If your bicycle has been in storage for some time, there are some critical steps and bike riding safety that you should follow to ensure you are safely in order prevent a bicycle accident.
Purchase the Proper Equipment
If you have not ridden your bicycle in some time, it is a good idea to take your bicycle to a local shop for a tune-up. If you do not have the funds to do this or are concerned about the health-risk presented by doing so, you should check for the following basic features:
- Check the air in your tires. Most tires will contain a label with the suggested pounds per square inch for inflation.
- Make sure that the brakes on your bicycle’s front and back wheel work properly.
- Inspect your bicycle’s chain to make sure that it has not completely rusted.
- Quick-release levers are located on your front and back wheels. You should make sure that these levers are tightly screwed and in the locked position.
Wear Adequate Protection
In many municipalities, children are required to wear helmets that fit their heads properly to protect them from traumatic brain injuries (TBI) should they have an accident. While helmets for children are a critical safety feature, helmets are also a good idea for adults.
Beside helmets, you should also make sure that you are properly protected from the coronavirus before heading out for a ride. Unless you are riding in an entirely remote area, you should make sure to wear a mask. While it is now believed that the risk of transmission is low if you just pass someone during a bike ride, the Centers for Disease Control still suggest wearing masks in these situations.
Bicycling is not as fun when you feel like you are in danger. This is why it is a good idea to pick a place to ride your bicycle that feels safe.
While closed streets are an attractive option, if there are not any closed streets near you, you should look for routes where traffic moves slowly. To make sure that your route is safe, you should also inspect the topography of the route.
If you are still having a difficult time deciding on a route, you should consider asking any friends who also cycle if they know of any safe routes.
While planning ahead, make sure to pick the proper equipment. First-aids kits are a good idea, just in case anyone falls while bicycling. Other items to consider packing include any necessary medication, snacks, and water.
Begin in a Parking Lot
As you adjust to riding a bicycle again, an excellent place to begin is empty parking lots. To prepare children for driving in the streets, some parents even draw stop signs and streets to simulate the experience before children do it for real.