Road Cycling Primer: Everything you need to know

Road biking is a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon riding with friends or scheduling an exercise session with a partner. No matter your reason for beginning your biking journey, there are a few tips and tricks that will make your trip a little easier. Find out some road biking basics to get started.

How To Choose the Right Bike

Rather than choosing an all-around road bike from an online catalog or department store, start by heading to a bike shop in town. Professionals in bike shops are trained to take measurements and fit you for the best bike for your height and weight.

You will likely start with a road bike model or even a hybrid option. After they bring you a few models to look at, they will measure you again to ensure you and the bike are a fit. Generally, you want about an inch of space between your crotch and the bike’s top tube. The only thing left is deciding which aesthetics and materials meet your needs. Bike materials you can choose from include:

  • Titanium
  • Aluminum
  • Carbon fiber
  • Steel
  • Alloy blends

What To Wear on the Road

Start with safety basics when choosing what to wear on the open road. Protecting your most precious parts, starting with your head, should be a priority.

Choose a helmet that has a snug fit and is easy to put on and remove. Prescription cycling glasses ensure you can see where you’re going and whether or not anything is in your way to avoid collisions. Gloves help grip for uneven roads and eliminate blisters from sweaty palms. Biking clothing should be comfortable but fitted, so it doesn’t interfere with the pedals and wheels is ideal; bonus points for any clothing including reflective coating or striping to alert others.

Why Riding Technique Matters

It is true that once you ride a bike, you never forget, but there are a few skills that should be honed before you share the road with other cyclists and drivers. You can consult a local cycling group, take lessons, or ask for pointers from the bike shop in town. Some gyms have stationary bikes that help improve performance with practice before hitting the pavement for real.

When To Follow Bike Etiquette

Rules and laws come with biking, depending on the city or state that you’re in at the time. Always check local regulations to ensure that you’re safely and legally biking at all times. Some common considerations include:

  • Ride single file rather than side by side
  • Ride with traffic not against it
  • Move to the appropriate lane and use hand signals when making a turn
  • Never ride on sidewalks unless regulations say otherwise
  • Stay alert for other drivers and cyclists
  • Share the road

Following the road rules and staying safe with the right bike and safety gear ensure plenty of cycling in your future. Contact a customer service specialist or browse the extensive selection of prescription cycling glasses online at Safety Gear Pro for more information on choosing the appropriate eyewear for hitting the open road.