Tag Archives: beginners

Developing Street Smarts

Sometimes once you’ve been riding for a while, you forget the little steps you took along the way. A recent comment on our “About Us” page reminded me of that recently. Amy in Chicago said:

Hi Ladies: I just discovered your blog and it’s so inspiring! Seeing what you have both been able to do has made me want to give up the el and start biking more often. . . . my boyfriend has been an avid biker for years. I just bought the Gary Fisher Simple City 3 which I absolutely love, but I’ve only been riding on smaller side streets around our neighborhood. I was hoping you could offer some advice on how you started riding on bigger streets around the city. I have to admit, I’m a bit scared of all the horror stories and oblivious drivers. We live in Wicker Park so I would have to find some major street just to get to the lakefront. How did you both start riding on bigger streets? Can you recommend any resources to learn how to ride more safely? Again, I’m really enjoying your blog. Keep up the good work!

How did I get started riding on bigger streets? Like the origins of my sudden desire to bicycle commute, it seemed murky.

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Most Fun You Can Have on Two Wheels

Much fuss is made in cycling circles about the factors that keep people from bike commuting: lack of safe parking, no showers at work, unsafe streets, etc. Sometimes, however, the biggest challenge is much more fundamental: being scared to ride a bike. Not scared of traffic or anything like that; scared of the bike itself. Starting, stopping, staying upright, wobbling, and turning all create reasons to stress for those who have not ridden a bike since childhood. Such was the case for Dottie when she started riding again after more than 10 years, and for my friend and former college roommate Kristi, who was visiting this weekend along with the Dotties. Despite having led ski groups and trail rides–talk about something to fear!–Kristi was a bit intimidated at the thought of being on two wheels.

Kristi Rides A Bike

Kristi Rides a Bike

Luckily, such fear is easily overcome for those willing to give it a try. Check out Kristi turning the fear to fun ratio upside down with Dottie’s helpful guidance and me yapping in the background.

more about “Kristi “, posted with vodpod

From here, we took it to the streets and she was amazing. Come back and ride the Bat anytime, K!

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