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51

Some important skills for commuters: Looking directly behind you without turning. This is a surprisingly difficult skill to master. When a rider looks directly backwards, it is common to turn in the direction they twisted their head. It takes a lot of practice to make resisting that turning automatic. The importance of looking behind you in traffic should ...


26

How to mount a curb. (kerb?) Start with your bike. With enough skill, you can go up a tall curb without damaging the bike. But as novice, make it easier on yourself. Remove extra weight. Backpack, panniers, etc. Remove lose items. Water bottles come to mind. Flat bars are easier. Fat tires protect your wheels when you make a mistake. Prerequisites It ...


25

Here are my snippets of advice from when I learnt to trackstand: Start off by practising on a slight uphill. This way you only need to practice the forward pressure part of the movement. As you get better you can move on to smaller and smaller slopes. In urban riding, you can often use the camber of the road as your slope. Use the right gear. Not really an ...


22

My opinion: I don't believe you can effectively draft and have enough time to stop. I don't know the exact aerodynamics (and I suspect it's affected by speed and wind), but if you watch any paceline or peleton, they're never more than a couple feet (about half a meter) behind the rider in front, often only a few inches (centimeters) behind. With a ...


21

The Highway Code comes in handy with this question... In London drivers of all buses are exceptionally well trained and likely to be highly experienced. They know every part of their route and have 'dealt with' plenty of cyclists before. They will always indicate when they are pulling over and indicate again when they are going to pull out. It is highly ...


17

Whilst I come from a mountain bike background so my advice might be different from someone with a road background, I've found the following tips work well when I've been on a road bike in the mountains. Keep your weight centered - don't be tempted to lean back. You want to keep a good amount of weight over the front wheel to help it grip. Look through the ...


17

I happen to be one of those who attract new riders into the sport, and have given the basic training to many people. Here is a brief of what I try to teach them: Riding position Be ready to react Have your bike properly tuned/fitted Scan the terrain(Look forward) Use a proper braking technique Never get to the extremes Grow progressively The most ...


14

I was taught how to track stand on a fixed gear bike by some velodrome riders and here are some pointers they gave me that really helped me. Keep your pedals roughly horizontal, and turn your front wheel about 45 degrees towards the side that has the front foot. Most beginners don't do this, they move their wheel left/right in an attempt to stabilize the ...


10

Depends on the size of the thing you are trying to draft. The distances listed below are distance between objects at normal road biking speeds. Bigger distance for higher speeds I may (or may not have) drafted a lot of things this is what I've found. A Bike: 1-2 Feet Small Car: 2-4 Feet SUV: 3-5 Feet Truck: 3-5 Feet 18 Wheeler: 4-8 Feet Bus (my ...


10

Try driving around bicyclists Now that you are experienced with biking around cars, you know what drivers often do that you hate. Periodically do some driving around bikes, to stay in touch with what drivers are going through. That will help you anticipate driver's behavior when you're on your bike.


9

In my experience dealing with crashes and bounces is like a lot of other aspects of, especially urban, cycling in that anticipation and prediction are the key attributes to getting away with less damage. After all, if you don't crash, you won't damage yourself (whether you're lidded or not). It's a variant on Gary Player's infamous quote, "The more I ...


7

First, at around 10-12 MPH and below you are fighting rolling/frictional resistance enough that the drafting benefit is negligible in still air. If the you have a headwind of 10+ MPH or are traveling at 15+ MPH then there is some benefit to be had. Assuming that there is no wind or a direct on head wind, the extension of the 'drafting bubble' is about 5 - ...


7

Both basic and advanced things any cyclist should know are covered in Cyclecraft. The best book on road cycling in the world (though remember non-Brits we cycle on the other side of the road!) http://www.cyclecraft.co.uk/ Edit: actually there is a North American edition. http://www.cyclecraft.org/ I am not very happy giving excerpts but I guess the thing ...


7

Wear a helmet (not wanting to start the compulsory helmet debate), and gloves - every little bit helps. In theory let go of the handlebars would be good. I have had some painful long lasting wrist injuries from the wrenching of the handlbars as the other side of the bar hits the ground. Although you would have to have good reflexes to do it. I'm normally ...


6

3- How should I deal with "bicycle forward stop" boxes? I deal with a "bicycle forward stop" box by using it (and being grateful that the city planners have started to arrange things for bikes). For example if cars are stopped where they should be (out of the box) and the light's red, I move into the box. It's there for me. [I'm in Toronto where people ...


6

The only thing I have to add to Chris's answer is that brakes can overheat rims on long descents. I'll either alternate brakes front-back where possible, or gently pulse them a little from time to time.


5

Learn to use your ears. I found that my ears were one of my most valuable assests when riding in traffic. Being able to tell what is going on around you without having to constantly turn your head to look just means you are more aware and therefore safer.


5

What do others do about the "come out of nowhere" motorists? There are a few possible reasons for this. Vision You may need to develop your peripheral vision. Unless you have problematic eyesight, you can detect movement in your peripheral vision. This doesn't replace glancing around thoroughly, but it does give you a guide to unexpected ...


5

If it really is an "organized" ride for thousands of riders of all skill levels, you don't really need to know/do anything special other than to be reasonably prepared for the time/distance of the ride, bring along water bottles, and bring money. And maybe sun lotion on a sunny day, or rain gear on a threatening day. But not all "organized" rides are that, ...


5

The trick is to remember how pedals are designed to grip. Decent pedals should grip your foot from going forwards or backwards, as well as obviously holding your weight. The only direction they don't grip is upwards away from the pedal. The trick is to rotate the pedal so that it's allows you to grip in the direction you want. You rotate your feet ...


5

Lets get the social aspects out the way - you can lead a horse to water and all that stuff.....: Hows your relationship - will he listen to you and is he prepared to take clearly well intended advice. Also does he believe he has a problem and does he want to fix it. If any of these answers is no there little you can do except ruin you friendship. Till hes ...


4

I learned how to track stand in a very similar fashion to Victor's posting with fixed gear bicycles. However learning to track stand on a freewheel bike can present a different set of problems than on a fixed gear bicycle. This does not necessarily mean it is harder though. The placement of your pedals in relation to your wheels is the same, but with the ...


4

Anything involving more than 50 riders leaves a large impact on the area so you may want to really think about how you can be a great guest, self sufficient and most of all not in a rush. Add an hour or more to arrive early - you will be with wonderful people all interested in being outdoors together. Celebrate and take time to connect to others socially - ...


4

My personall suggestion is the classic 1990's book / Video "Mountain bike like a champion" by Ned Overend Or his Performance Mountain biking DVD Both have helped me more than i expected. Otherwise practice practice practice, and ride with people better than you anytime you can. Another alternative, but the most expensive, is go to a local pro's "skills ...


4

In my opinion, what defines a master is how much he dominates its craft. If we consider riding bike as a craft or tool. A true master is one that, at any level of skill, is always below his limit. Just as an example, let's consider a professor, a math professor. If he only knows what he teaches his students, and cannot go out the beaten path, he's everyday ...


4

Particularly when you're learning to do a skid stop, you need to hop your back wheel off the ground momentarily and then lock your back leg while your wheel is not in contact with the road. Then when your wheel hits the road again, it will skid. You shouldn't need to jam it anywhere against your bike, I'd suggest this is probably a bit dangerous. It's good ...


3

Just some other tips to add on... Have a buddy with you when attempting a significant descent in a remote area. Stay cool and try to mentally anticipate what is going to happen before you start reacting. Pick your line and think about contingencies if a car or obstacle shows up. Look far ahead, not just at your buddies in front. Don't get aggressive with ...


3

Track Standing (thanks to @zingdon for what its called) What I practice repeatedly at all traffic lights is balancing without putting your feet on the ground. It improves balance which can prevent a crash if you ever get knocked slightly e.g. clipped by a wing mirror or hit an unsuspected pot-hole. For learning: brake until you come to a standstill ...


3

Start by finding some imperfection in the surface - like just a tiny bit of a dip or lump. Roll your front wheel up to the point by pushing very slightly on the pedals and then once you feel the resistance from point to your movement ease off on the pedals and roll back. Keep doing this and you will find that you can balance on the point with only the very ...



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