Family, Running & Fitness

Bike Riding Tips for Beginners

Matt Orlando
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Most of us own a bicycle—perhaps it’s tucked away in a garage or shed, just catching dust. We remember times in our early lives when all we wanted was a shiny new bike. Now that we have one at our disposal, though, it never sees the light of day. Perhaps it can, now that we’ve got children who are entering bike riding age. Bike riding more is a great way to start getting healthier, living better, and helping your children get more comfortable on bikes. With a few bike riding tips for beginners, you and your new riders can bond over a bicycle trip in no time.

Ready Your Bicycle

Whether you’re dusting off a bike you already own or acquiring one elsewhere, you’ll want to prepare it for your body. Setting the proper seat height will determine whether you’ll have unnecessary back or knee strain or pain. Be sure that the seat your bike has is comfortable enough to sit on. (Sitting on it will take some getting used to, but you can obtain a different size, a shaped seat, or even get a gel cover.)

In addition to the proper seat height, the right bike fit is also determined by reach. Your legs should be slightly bent with your foot at the bottom of the pedal stroke. If your or your child’s legs are too strained, you’ll be in for a very unpleasant experience. You’ll want to do the same for your little one and implement training wheels to start.

Learn About Bikes

As you begin, you don’t need to know everything there is to know about bicycles. It’s essential that you can measure the proper fit, but beyond that, you should have a basic understanding of how the gears work and know how to use a kit to patch a tire.

This is also a good opportunity to teach your children about responsibility and caring for belongings. You should also educate yourself on top safety tips for bike commuters and leisure or exercise riders. This way, you’ll know the proper etiquette, expectations, and precautions as you venture out of your neighborhood.

Maintenance Tips

Knowing basic maintenance parameters, such as lubing the chain and proper storage, will help your bike to last longer with fewer issues. Be sure to keep your tires inflated and check them regularly.  Verify that the nuts and bolts are secure without overtightening them.

Brakes are essential, which is why it’s important to ensure they’re adjusted and in good condition. It would be best if you also learned how to fix a tube that has a hole in case your bike gets a flat tire, so you can avoid the tedium of walking the bike home. Failing to take care of or avoiding smaller issues can result in much larger ones.

As you review the bike riding tips for beginners, you’ll start to get a feel for what works for you. Before you know it, you’ll be giving your own advice to others. As you build your strength and skills, you may find that the bicycle is a viable mode of transportation for many instances. This is also a perfect way to bond with your family and strengthen their skills in the great outdoors!