May is Bike Month and we are here to help you celebrate! Go beyond finding the perfect bike – make sure you’re prepared for anything while on a ride, especially when heading out for longer excursions. Here are our top 5 safety tips for an optimal ride:
1. Fuel Up
If you’re heading out for a long ride, endurance is your best friend. Plan to drink about one 16-ounce bottle of water per hour to prevent dehydration. If your ride will exceed two hours, take an easily transportable snack, such as a banana or energy gels, to refuel.
2. Check Your Bike
Maintaining your bike should be a regular activity. Performance checks ahead of every ride can be as simple as a visual walk-around. Begin by examining wheels for cracked or worn rubber or low air pressure – all things that can lead to a flat tire. Make sure your chain is cleanly turning through front and rear sprockets on the full range of gears to avoid problems when shifting on rough terrain.
3. Light Up
If you’re hitting the road or trail early in the morning or after sunset, don’t forget the lights! Add your own headlight, like this CatEye Front Bike Light, to avoid hazards in your path. Additionally, adding a smaller light or flashing LED light to your wheels or seatback can ensure visibility when biking around vehicles. In fact, many states require these lights during hours of darkness to reduce collisions.
4. Stash an Emergency Kit
The most common problem cyclists face is the dreaded flat tire. Carry a spare tube or patch kit to easily repair small punctures as soon as you notice a problem – riding on a punctured tire can result in a blowout! Having a small hand pump that fits in a backpack ensures you can inflate the tire and get back on the trail.
A multi-tool can solve a variety of bicycle problems, making it one of the best investments. A good multi-tool will include the necessary features to remove a faulty chain link, tighten loose screws, adjust derailleur stops and cut handlebar tape or zip ties.
5. Protect Your Assets
Not only is it important to invest in a heavy duty bike lock to prevent theft, it’s even more important to protect your body. Accidents do happen, so a good helmet and protective clothing go a long way.
Keep your bikes and gear protected with a SIMPLR protection plan.