Whether you have decided to take a bicycle to and from work, use a bicycle for your exercise routine, or simply ride a bike for recreational purposes, one thing’s for sure: you must keep yourself safe at all times, and make sure you are protected from any accidents or injuries, especially if you will be riding your bike in the city or an urban landscape. But even while biking is a brilliant way to stay active and explore your surroundings, it can be dangerous if you do not take the necessary precautions. Regardless if you are a veteran or beginner, it is essential to prioritize your – and other pedestrians’ or drivers’ – safety while biking. So how can you make sure you are safe and protected? Here’s your absolute guide to keeping yourself safe while on a bicycle.
Invest in a good bike and safety gear!
The very first aspect you should take care of if you want to cycle safely is investing in a good bicycle – and having the right gear. With the right bike, you can have a smooth and safe ride, while the correct safety gear will protect you from injuries in case you have an accident. A good quality bicycle should have reliable brakes, for one, but it should also be sturdy and comfortable. In addition, invest in a well-fitting helmet, shoes, cycling gloves, and high-visibility clothing. And in case you are involved in an accident, the right bike and gear will serve as evidence that you were doing your part and should be awarded the proper bicycle injury compensation.
Plan the best route
Before embarking on a biking trip, plan the best route you should take. Planning your route accordingly will ensure that you avoid dangerous intersections, areas with lots of traffic, and steep hills. Use biking maps or apps to identify bike-friendly routes with designated bike lanes that are less congested, and familiarize yourself with the route beforehand to avoid getting lost.
Stay as visible as possible
Another key to biking safety, especially when riding at night or in low-light conditions, is to stay visible. It is essential to make yourself visible to other users of the road by using lights, wearing bright, reflective clothing, and adding reflective tape to your bike. A white front and a red rear light are particularly crucial if you bike at night, as they make you more visible to drivers.
Be alert and aware of your surroundings
It is also crucial to be alert and aware of your surroundings – and this means keeping an eye out for hazards such as debris, potholes, and other obstacles. In addition, pay attention to the behavior of other road users, especially motorists. Make it a point not to ride too close to parked cars, as drivers may open their doors suddenly!
Concentrate and stay focused!
Lastly, staying alert and focused is crucial if you want to bike safely and protect yourself (and other road users). Avoid distractions such as using your phone or listening to music while biking, as this can impair your ability to react to road hazards. Additionally, do not bike if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, as this can also impair your judgment, coordination, and reflexes.