Staring off in any kind of sport can prove difficult, but road biking can be especially hard. It’s not as simple as buying some soccer cleats or running shoes. In fact, the number of things you need and the complexity of some of the hardware can be quite a headache.
8 Tips To Begin Biking On The Road Right
Fortunately, it’s a simple enough process when you break it down into steps, which are listed for you in the following paragraphs:
1) Find A Bike:
Maybe it’s so obvious that it should go without saying, but if you want to take up road biking, then you’re going to need a bike. If you’re thinking that’s too simple, then you’re right. You need to specifically get a road bike and not any other kind. Even in the arena of road bikes, there is a mind-boggling variety from which you can choose.
For most road biking, the best option is going to be a model featuring dropped handlebars. This lets you get into a lower position, as the improved aerodynamics help you ride faster. That’s not your only possible option though. A hybrid bike featuring flat bars might suit you a lot better if you’re riding around town or just commuting.
2) Gear Up:
If you want to look right doing this and have other riders take you seriously, you’re going to be shopping for lycra. The right shorts are going to keep you comfortable on long rides and be padded enough to protect your sensitive spots. Look for shorts with straps that help keep them in place while you ride. Also look out for a nice jersey that doesn’t flap in the wind. Winter rides might even mean a jacket.
Your helmet is one thing you can’t skimp on. Having said that, most helmets are safe. However, spending more can usually mean lighter weights, extra comfort, and improved ventilation on warm days.
3) Get Used To Clipping In:
Your bike likely won’t come with pedals. Even if it does, it’s actually a good idea to get rid of them and then exercise using clipless pedals. These are something you clip your shoes into, and they make pedaling far more efficient, as you can both pull and push the pedal at the same time.
It’s a learning curve, and you’ll possibly take a few lumps while learning how to ride this way, but once you discover how powerful this technique is, you won’t ride any other way.
4) Set The Bike Up Right:
Getting your saddle height right is crucial. The handlebar positions are almost as equally as important in terms of preventing or managing back pain. It’s expensive to do, but a professional bike fit works wonders in keeping you free of injury.
5) Pick Some Routes:
A waterproof smartphone mount can help you navigate unfamiliar roads just as much as it does in your car. You can likewise get a dedicated cycling computer that has preplanned routes for download.
6) Identify Your Ride Style:
The more time you spend in the saddle, the more you’ll learn about yourself. Do you like climbing or flat terrain? Do you go solo or like to be a part of a pack? It’s helpful to have a variety of racing styles in your routine to make you more well-rounded as a cyclist, but catering to your strengths keeps it fun.
7) Make A Habit Of It:
Regardless of your ride style, keep mounting up and going. Your body will need some adjustment to get used to road biking but starting small and then growing from where you are at can make it easier along the way.
8) Join A Club:
Joining a riding club is a great way to meet your fellow riders, find great roads, and be a part of the larger community. Many of them have rides, especially for newer riders. Look for no-drop rides where the group goes at whatever pace the slowest rider is doing, meaning no one gets left behind.
If you’re new to road cycling, you might feel as if you have no idea where to get started with this fun sport. However, now that you have read this article, you know the first 8 steps you should take.