When bicycling, your equipment needs are determined mainly by how much you ride and where you ride. For example, are you a casual rider? A mountain biker? Do you ride on busy roads? Do you travel long distances? How fast do you ride? All of these factors will determine the best cycling essentials for you.
5 Cycling Essentials
Most cycling essentials are the same for most riders regardless of how, when, and where you ride. So let’s look at the top cycling essentials that every rider should include on every ride.
- A helmet: The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that helmet use reduces the risk of head injury for bicyclists by 85%, yet the CDC says that less than half of the millions of riders in America wear them. When used with a comprehensive approach to safety, helmets are an essential piece of cycling equipment.
- High visibility: Preventing an accident is by far better than preparing for how to survive one. High visibility is just as important as wearing a helmet for bicycling. For this reason, wear reflective clothing (especially in low-visibility conditions). And ensure your bicycle has reflectors on the frame and wheels. Because of its preventative approach, high visibility exists as one of the top bicycling essentials.
- A tire repair kit: Eventually, most cyclists will have to fix a flat tire while out on a ride. Keeping a tire repair kit that easily fits in a small bag under the seat and knowing how to use it takes away the worry of what to do and where you’ll be when it happens. Eliminating that fear allows you to enjoy the ride more thoroughly. So make a tire repair kit a bicycling essential.
- Padding: Padded shorts or a seat makes for a more comfortable ride. Bikers also find padded gloves to keep their grip secure and prevent sore hands. If you don’t ride a lot, you’ll find padding essential for an enjoyable bicycle ride, especially seat padding.
- Protective Eyewear: Think of Cycling Sunglasses like the windshield in a car. They protect your eyes from debris, dust, and flying bugs. Plus, quality eyewear provides protection against the sun’s harmful UV radiation. So not only does cycling eyewear protect your eyes, but they also reduce glare, which helps you focus on the road ahead.
Other Items To Consider
Now that we have the essentials covered, you may want to consider adding the following items as well:
- Hydration bottle or pack.
- First aid kit.
- Cell phone.
- Bike lock.
- Wrist or ankle band with contact information.
When planning your next bike ride, analyze your route and select the appropriate gear. If you’re unsure, talk to your local bike shop expert. Being fully prepared will ensure your next bike ride is safe and enjoyable.
What are some of the items you consider essential for bike riding? Share your bike riding experiences in the comment section below.