Sunday, December 8, 2013
For most cyclists, comfort and riding are two things that don't mix. What with being perched on a hard, tiny seat, hunched over toward the handlebars, pumping up a never-ending incline, a certain amount of agony is expected.
Comfort is for people who can't get off the couch.
Or is it?
Folks in the Brunswick area should round up the kids - and the kid-sized bikes - on Saturday and head over to the Walmart parking lot for the 18th Annual Brunswick Bike Rodeo/Family Safety Day.
The event is from 9 a.m. to noon and it's free to the public. Get bike safety checks, check out displays from local organizations and get help with helmet adjustments, and try out the bike safety course. Kids who complete the course can enter a drawing for a new bike. There's also free food - while it lasts - and music.
Whether you ride the trails, compete in local criterium events or pedal around your neighborhood with your 8-year-old, safety is always the priority. And for anyone on a bike, safety starts with your head.
Fortunately, you don't have to spend a lot to get a helmet that meets U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission standards. Most helmets intended for all-around cycling start at about $30. On the high end, road racing helmets can set you back $200.
The difference in price usually comes from the style: Racing helmets are much more aerodynamic and generally have larger ventilation holes for more airflow and less weight; sport helmets are smooth and rounded and often come with detachable visors. Both types can be adjusted, either with a sizing system built into the helmet or with foam padding that can be added for a more snug fit.
Here are three things that will help tell you if a helmet fits correctly:
Seems like the rain is here to stay, doesn't it? And it sure has put a damper in mileage logs for cyclists over the past five days.
Those who actually enjoy riding in the rain are few and far between, but sometimes you just have to suck it up and do it. After all, training for events like the Trek Across Maine doesn't miraculously happen while you're laying on the couch listening to the rain drops and getting caught up on the last three episodes of "The Firm."
If you've been braving the elements with your leg warmers and rain jacket, there are a few basic maintenance items you should keep in mind to keep you bike performing at a high level.
Crafts and cycling aren't often referred to in the same sentence. For good reason.
You don't, for example, ever want to be caught knitting a pair of mittens while pedaling along on the Eastern Trail. That would be considered extremely dangerous. And you'd look like an idiot.
But those who consider both crafting and biking among their talents might be interested in combining the two at Space Gallery's Bike Tool Bag Workshop on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.