Safe cycling tips

In Between the Pipes, both Sarah and Mike love to cycle. In fact, their first “date” is a bicycle ride and picnic.

Here are six tips for safe cycling!




Always wear a helmet. Here’s a picture of a helmet of a cyclist who went head over handlebars when his tire caught a rut in the road of a city street. He hadn’t been travelling that fast, and if he hadn’t been wearing a helmet this would have been his skull. Don’t risk it!!


Most cycling deaths occur between 6pm and 9pm. If you expect to cycle in low-light conditions, wear brightly coloured, reflective clothing, and use lights in the front and rear of your bike. A strong headlight and a blinking red tail-light might save your life!



Scan the rear windows of parked cars and give a wide berth in case someone suddenly opens a door. Watch out for potholes and storm grates. Yield to pedestrians and cars and use hand signals so drivers are aware of your intentions.

Buy the right bike: mountain bike, city bike, hybrid, or road bike. Simply put, a mountain bike is built for rougher terrain and has wider tires and lower gear ratios for steeper terrain and better traction. A city bike is lighter with narrower tires and is designed for city streets and harder forest floors. A hybrid bike is a combination of a mountain bike and a city bike – with wider tires and a lighter frame. A road bike is usually the most expensive and designed to be ridden only on tarmac – the high-end bike for competitive cycling.

Keep the tires inflated and the chain lubed. Makes it easier to pedal.

Make sure the bike fits you. There are different ways to find the right frame size for your body, and a reputable dealer will help you out, but generally, when you straddle the bike and stand flat-footed, there should be one to two inches of clearance between your groin and the top tube. Your handlebars should be one inch lower than your seat top. Position the seat so that your knee is only slightly bent at the bottom of each rotation. If it’s bent too much, the seat is too low: if the knee locks when extended or it’s hard to reach the pedal, the seat is too high. You’ll enjoy cycling so much more if the fit is right!

Cycling is a great way to be active! You might meet Sarah and Mike on the bike trails. 😀