Riding Your Bike Safely

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Get on Your Bike!

Bikes are a fun, quick and healthy way to get about with your friends. But it’s important to remember that bikes aren’t toys and with more traffic on the roads than ever before, thousands of kids end up in hospital every year following cycling accidents.

5 Tips for Cycling Safely:

1) Wear a Helmet

Did you know that 70% of all cycling deaths involve a head injury? That’s why it’s hard to believe that some kids still don’t wear helmets when they ride their bikes. As well as saving your life, there are loads of styles and colours to choose from so you can stay safe and look smart at the same time.

2) Be Seen

Many accidents are caused because it’s hard for car drivers to see cyclists until it’s too late. You can make it easier by wearing light coloured or high visibility clothing. Your bike should always have clean reflectors AND lights - but it’s safer to avoid riding your bike in the dark at all.

3) Pay Attention

One of the best ways to stay safe is to stay alert. You should never, ever listen to music or use a mobile phone when you are riding a bike as you won’t be able to hear traffic and people walking. You also might not see other hazards such as pot holes or loose stones which could make you lose your balance or skid. Taking your eyes and ears off the road can lead to terrible accidents.

4) Check Your Bike

Get into the habit of checking your bike before you set off. Ask an adult to show you how to check the following:
  • The brakes should work and the brake pads should not be too worn.

  • The handle bars should be straight and tight.

  • The saddle should be straight and not loose.

  • The tyres should be pumped up and not damaged or worn.

  • The lights must work and should be clean.

  • The chain should be well oiled.
5) Keep off Roads

You should never ride your bike on the roads without the permission from your parents. If you need to ride on roads you should avoid cycling on busy main roads or if it is wet or icy.

It’s important to remember cyclists have to follow certain rules like cycling on the left hand side of the road and stopping at red traffic lights. One of the best ways to prepare is to take a Cycling Proficiency Course which will teach you the Highway Code. This is a set of rules all road users must follow. Many schools run cycling proficiency courses so speak teacher or a parent to find out more.

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