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Are your SKILLS ready for SPRING?

Safety Corner logoby Pierre Avignon


For those of us who put our bikes away for the winter, the time has come to dust them off and get ready to ride. Tuned-up, new chain and tires, checked all over, our machines are ready to roll again. You’re probably itching to get out and enjoy the spring weather.

If your activity has slowed down during the winter time, you will probably get back into shape as the days get longer and your legs get stronger. But can the same be said about skills?

Here are a few things to consider before your first club ride of 2008, whether you are a novice rider or more experienced and just getting back on the saddle after a season of cycle hibernation. First, consider doing a few short rides, solo or with a bike buddy to build your confidence level.

Second, review two articles and a great riding-skills booklet from our archives on the CRW web site, plus a MassBike reference:

• “Improve your Bike Handling Skills” by Bob Zogg - August 2005. This article contains a great list of tips to help us hone our bike-handling skills, regardless of our levels of experience.

• “Safety reminders for New Members” by Eli Post - February 2008. The title says it all, though was it meant only for new members? A great read for all who missed this more recent issue.

• “Bicycling Street Smarts” by John Allen. Covers all the bases in a short and easy to read format. The indispensable reference to riding confidently, legally and safely. Available from John’s web site at

• Massbike’s “Basics of Traffic Cycling” and more: another great reference from our State Bicycle Coalition. Also, check the MassBike schedule of skills classes at

Happy reading and remember-safety is about choices. What choices will you make?

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