Beginners Guide to Cycling

beginners-guide-to-cycling

So, you have decided that cycling is something you want to try out, but you aren’t quite sure where to start. We will be identifying a few areas you should focus on when you start on your cycling path to help you get the best start you can. 

Starting Line

The first step of cycling, of course, is finding the right bike. Just like when you shoe shop, you will want to find a bike that fits you well. Bike sizes are determined by measuring from where the seat post starts and to the crank. One of the easiest methods of choosing the right bike size is by using the following guidelines. 

For riders between 4’11” (150 cm) and 5’3″ (160 cm) a 13″-15″ (33 cm – 38 cm) bike is ideal. A few of the more common heights are listed below:

  • 5’3″- 5’7″ (160 cm – 170 cm) = 15″-16″ (38 cm – 40 cm) bike
  • 5’7″-5’11” (170 cm – 180 cm) = 16″-17″ (40 cm – 43 cm) bike
  • 6’0″-6’2″ (183 cm – 188 cm) = 17″-19″ (43 cm – 48 cm) bike

The other method to calculate the bike size is as follows:

1. Stand with your legs between 15″ and 20″ (38 cm – 50 cm) apart and remove your shoes

2. Measure the height from the ground to your crotch

3. Determine the kind of bike you want. You can choose from mountain bikes, city bikes, or road bikes. Once you determine the type of bike you want, measure as described above. Then you can calculate the right size bike for your stature.

For a mountain bike, take the inseam you calculated above and multiply that number by 0.66 to find your frame size.

For a road bike, take the inseam and multiply it by 0.70.

For a city bike, take the inseam and multiply it by 0.685. 

If you are unsure about the right size for you, then you should discuss your options with someone who is experienced with bikes and cycling. Choosing the wrong size bike can lead to an uncomfortable ride and can cause pedalling to be much more difficult for you. 

Choosing the Helmet

Safety should always take priority when cycling, and a helmet is a must-have accessory to purchase with your new bike. You will want to purchase the best helmet that is within your budget. Remember, you get what you pay for. A more expensive bike helmet may have better impact protection when compared to a less expensive helmet. 

Once you find the helmet, it is also important to adjust the straps correctly to ensure a proper fit. If the straps are too loose, the helmet won’t do you much good if you get into an accident or fall. If you don’t take the time to get it properly fitted, you might as well not even wear it all because it will not effectively protect you as it should.

The Gear

Next, you will want to have the proper gear on when cycling, so you are safe and comfortable during your ride. Lycra shorts are a popular option for cyclists, and they provide maximum comfort and can keep you cool on your ride. You can even find some provide padding.

Bicycle jerseys offer wind resistance, and some have a much more aerodynamic design when compared to regular clothing. Wind resistance is a big issue when it comes to cycling so wearing a jersey to reduce this is important and can offer you a much-improved cycling experience overall.

Finally, when cycling always make sure you are highly visible to others sharing the roadway with you. Wear bright and reflective clothing that stands out especially if you will be cycling at night.

Following these simple steps and tips will put you on the right path toward a proper cycling life beginning— happy pedalling!!

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