May is National Bike Bike Month! Which makes me really excited, because I ride my trusty old Trek bike, well, basically everywhere. The month of May is all about encouraging people to get out and ride to all of the places that they would normally drive to. But what if you’re new to the bike and don’t know where to start? Don’t worry, read on for tips and tricks on how to make biking to school, sports practices and friends houses as safe and fun as possible.
1. Get your bike tuned up. Has your bike been sitting in the garage for the past 5 years? Before taking it out for a spin, bring it to your local bike shop for a tune up. They’ll check to make sure it’s working and ready for you to ride!
2. Buy (and always wear!) a helmet. Even if you’re having the best hair day you’ve ever had, you gotta rock a helmet. Buy one in a funky color (mine’s bright pink) and rock it every time you’re on the bike.
3. Be safe at night. Make sure your bike is ready to ride at night. Buy flashing LED bike lights and put them on the white one on the front and and the red one on the back of your bike. If you do a lot of night riding, I’d also get reflective tape and put it on your frame. In most states it’s actually illegal to bike at night without lights so make sure you’re visible and following the laws.
4. Map out a safe bike route. Google Maps now has a bike option, use it! Even though bike routes may sometimes take you a bit out of your way, they’re much safer than riding in busy traffic. Always ride single-file in the bike lane and obey traffic lights and signs.
5. Have fun! Biking is a totally carbon-free and human- powered method of transportation and it’s totally addictive! So have fun and be safe on the bike!