You’re thinking of cycling to work! Brilliant!!
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There is a lot of information available on the internet about cycling to work. We would like to help you get on your bike, so we have summarised the main points and answered frequently asked questions:
Plan your route. We can help you plan your route through our cycling maps or use the online cycle journey planner. The online planner is currently only available in the five leisure hub towns but we are working on county wide coverage. With this journey planner, you can plan your journey according to the quickest, quietest and flattest route. If you haven’t cycled the route yet, it might be best to test ride the route beforehand!
Be safe be seen! Select light coloured cycling clothes to make yourself visible. In particular during winter months hi visibility or reflective clothing is paramount. Invest in a good set of lights so that you are seen on the road.
Give your bicycle a regular safety check and give it some TLC every two weeks or so. Cleaning and oiling the chain, as well as pumping up tyres every two weeks or so keeps your bike in tip top condition! Recommended cycle shops near you can be found on the bike shop site.
Cycle Training- read up on top tips for cycling on trafficked roads or take part in our Cycle to Your Hearts Content/ Cycle Training courses. We also offer a ‘DIY’ training pack for those who prefer to learn by themselves!
Frequently asked questions:
What bike should I use?
· Any bike would do! Use a bike you are comfortable with riding. For a selection of bicycles, look at our bicycle gallery to get a general summary of what they really are best used for.
· If you are employed, did you know that you could buy a new bike and accessories for cycle commuting net of income tax. This would mean a saving of over £400 on £1000 worth of kit, or nearly £500 if you're a higher rate tax payer. To take advantage of this, your employer would need to be registered with the Government-endorsed Cycle to Work scheme. Find out more from http://www.bikeforall.net/content/cycle_to_work_scheme.php
What do I need?
· Cycling helmets are available in all shapes and sizes. When you buy a helmet, check that it is not older than three years (date on stickers inside the helmet) and that it contains the number EN1078 or BS6863
· Get bike panniers or a rucksack; for clothing, papers, snacks or a pair of office shoes! Some people keep a change of clothes at work!
· Buy a secure lock; find out where to park, or keep a lock at the bike sheds at work so you don’t have to carry it with you everyday.
What about the Great British weather?
· Mudguards on your bike protect you from the spray from your tires if the streets are wet. Water proof clothing are useful when it really pours down, but studies have found that on average it only rains eight times a year during morning or afternoon rush hour. Check the weather forecast before you go!
· This websites features a weather forecast to give you an idea.
· Most days, especially sunny days there’s nothing better than pedalling home with a smile and the sun in your face!
What if I get a flat tyre or my bike breaks down?
· Tools such as a puncture repair kit and small bike pump or a spare inner tube are advisable – or bring your mobile phone to ring a friend!
· You can buy a ‘puncture proof’ innertube. They’re more expensive than the ordinary ones, but at least you’ll be puncture free!
· In rare occasions, (if your gears are not tuned) the chain might come off your bicycle – bring a pair of gloves or some tissue to put it back on and get the gears tuned at a bike shop or have a go at it yourself!
There are a number of websites and blogs on the internet that you might find useful.
On the cycle commute:
Lots of information on cycling in general:
Did you know
Regular cyclists look, feel, and enjoy the health and fitness benefits of people 10 years younger. It's much cheaper than gym membership, you don't need to rely on other people to take part and, if you cycle for local journeys, exercise becomes part of daily life, you wont need to find extra time for it.
It takes about 30 minutes to cycle 5 miles. This would take about 10 minutes by car, but that’s if you’re not stuck in traffic. How far away from work do you live?
It only rains on average about 20 days in the year during commuting time!