Essential Cycling Safety Rules and Equipment

There are basic safety rules and equipment that you have to be aware of when you head out to go cycling. When considering your equipment, you need to make sure that it is in excellent working condition. You should give your bike a thorough inspection, starting with the tires. These should gave adequate tread to give you good grip on the road or trail, be filled to the proper air pressure and not be dry rotted. Your chain needs to be oiled and not to loose. You should check that the reflectors are securely fastened and are not cracked or broken.

Depending on where you ride, you need to have the right kind of tire for the conditions. If you are going to be going off road, mountain bike tires are the appropriate choice. These are larger and have a wider tread that allows them to get a good grip on rocks and other trail debris. They are also made to take abuse and hard riding conditions in stride. For street riding on asphalt or pavement, street tires will give you a much easier ride. These have a thinner diameter and allow you ride on the surface more smoothly.

You should always wear a helmet no matter where you are riding. When purchasing a helmet, you should always try it on and make sure that it fits comfortably on your head. When you fasten the strap below your chin, it should just be tight enough you can slipped two fingers side-by-side between it and your skin. If you already have a helmet, it is essential that all of the straps are securely attached and that the padding in the helmet is not cracked or worn.

For mountain biking, you will need extra equipment to help protect your body in case of a fall. This will require clothing and gloves that are padded and made from sturdy material. If you go do on a rough trail, these will help to keep your skin from being scraped up.

Whether you ride in a day or at night, you should always wear clothing that makes you visible to passing drivers on the road. Bright colors are preferable, but it is even better to wear items that are reflective. You can purchase reflective tape at your local retail store and add it to your helmet, or you can wear a reflective strip or vest. This is specially critical at night when visibility is the lowest. At night, you should have a working flashing red light attached to the front and back of your bicycle.

When on the road, you should ride with the oncoming traffic and stay as far to the right as you can safely. The best roads to ride on are those with minimal traffic or that have an established bike lane. It is also essential that you use the proper hand signals to let drivers know what you will be doing next. If you’re going to stop, you raise your right hand straight into the air. For a turn, you hold out either your right or left arm parallel to the ground, depending on which way you are planning to turn. Even though you are on a bicycle, you still need to follow all traffic rules and obey all safety signs that you come to.

By paying attention to safety and following the rules, you will be much safer on the road and can enjoy your ride.