How to Turn a Bike into a Stationary Bike for Those High-Risk Days
Unstable weather conditions and dangerous roads are considered to be a cyclist’s archenemies as they add unnecessary risk to this all-weather sport. For those who have funds and space to spare, knowing how to turn a bike into a stationary bike can be very helpful in going around two of cycling’s greatest nemesis.
The benefits you are bound to get from regular cycling always outweighs the risks that revolve around the sport, but knowing how to go about them is always a plus. But what are these risks and how do you go about them?
Risks of Cycling
An assessment of the risks involved with cycling as well as the ways that you can do to go around these risks is an important element in cycling nowadays as more and more people are reported getting injured while racing, trail riding, or doing stunts that are beyond their present skill set. However, most of these risks can be circumvented using one or more methods.
Here are some of the risks in cycling:
- Unpredictable Weather
The ever-changing weather would always be a risk that cyclists would have to contend with. Extreme summer weather can cause heat stroke and dehydration while the winter and rainy seasons can cause slippery roads that may lead to accidents and zero visibility scenarios where riding is forced to a standstill.
- Road Rage
A fairly recent development, a few drivers who have a thing or two against cyclists have been caught on camera pushing, shoving or deliberately causing harm to any cyclist that they come across with. The human plus machine factor makes this one of the fatal risks that anybody may encounter.
- Unfamiliar Road or Trails
Cyclists are adventurers by extension, and they always try to find unexplored trails or roads going to places they have never been to. The unpredictability of these unknown parts can cause accidents, overfatigue, dehydration, and deadly encounters with wild animals and drivers.
- Road Accidents
The risk in cycling along a road is slightly higher than cycling along a trail as several variables come into play including driver behavior, vehicle malfunction, and traffic. While normal traffic presents fewer risks for cyclists, anything can still happen along the road.
- Trail Mishaps
Cycling along established and controlled trails is considered safe, but there are optional sections of a trail that are meant for more experienced riders due to the technical skill needed to navigate them. Casts and bandages often welcome newbies who are brave enough to try them once they get back to the starting point.
- Criminal Behavior
Another human-based risk, criminal behavior is how other people treat cyclists as a whole, be it for profit or just plain torturous entertainment. This particular risk is on the rise as it can be connected to the rising incidence of bike theft and bike grabbing along known trails and roads.
- Health-related Risks
Sometimes cyclists do not know their limitations which can include technical skills, lack of stamina, and overconfidence. All of which can result in risks that are often dire and serious.
Minimizing the Risks of Cycling
As previously mentioned, the risks involved in cycling can be circumvented in more ways than one, and all of them are doable, and they do require careful planning and enough overhead to gather more information. Some people think that organizing a bike race is as simple as getting people to come, but that only scratches the surface as organizers also have to think about how to minimize any pre-identified risks.
- Research, Research, Research
Knowledge is power as they say. Get more information about the trails or place that you would like to go to. Some sites would have detailed information about what kind of skill is needed for this and that trail and what kind of equipment you would need to bring. A detailed analysis of the present risks and how other people have gone about it would be better.
- Choose the Weather
The weather is unpredictable, yes, but forecasts are at least helpful in determining whether the weather is worth getting rained on or worth courting the risks involved. Always recheck the weather just before you ride off as this would be the most accurate, but it is also suggested that you assess it by looking to the sky and the surrounding environment.
This is advisable for new bike trails, but it also pays to know where you are going. Using a support vehicle, ride to your destination and see what kind of conditions you are bound to face once the day of the ride arrives. This exercise would let you prepare in advance about what to bring, and it can let you strategize if headwind is expected.
- Numbers Game
While riding solo has its benefits, riding with a group or at least a couple is always advisable as you would have somebody else to guard your back or rescue you when you’re injured. Cycling in groups builds a form of camaraderie, and even strangers are always willing to help other cyclists who need it.
- Home Set-up
If your general area is prone to road accidents and erratic weather, then you best stay at home and set-up your bike as a stationary bike. Others would use bike trainers while some would have a separate stationary bike at home.
- Be a Better Rider
Sometimes the main risk is you and how you ride your bike. Riding a bike may be easy, but there is a technical aspect to it. Train yourself to be more observant about your surroundings while riding. You can also take cycling classes from coaches so that they can teach you more advanced things that you don’t know existed.
- Think Ahead
Always think one step ahead of everything. Carefully plan each bike ride, and always list down the risks that you might encounter. Also, do not forget to let others know where you are going and who you are with as this information may be vital while you are out.
How to Turn a Bike into a Stationary Bike
Not everybody has space and the funds to buy a stationary bike that they would not always use. Sometimes, knowing how to turn a bike into a stationary bike can be beneficial in cases like this.
Stationary bikes have their set of benefits over actual bikes, but actual bikes would always trump over stationary bikes for the scenery and companionship alone. However, since the weather and your significant others are not always as permitting as you would like, setting up your beloved bike as a stationary bike is your best bet for a regular ride.
- Bike Trainers
The easiest way would be to use a bike trainer to prop the rear wheel up and a steady block for the front wheel. Bike trainers can offer some form of resistance and are easy to install. You don’t even have to do anything special, just center the rear wheel on the trainer and tighten the skewers to get a better balance.
- Bike Rollers
Another way to transform your bike into a stationary bike is thru the use of bike rollers. Bike rollers make both wheels spin as you pedal, with the resistance coming from your pedal stroke. This mode can take time getting used to and will require a slightly larger space than a bike trainer.
Weather and road conditions remain the top risks but the “human factor” is slowly creeping in, especially with irresponsible riders and drivers swarming around the globe. If this trend continues, then you might see a future where indoor cycling is all the rave with bikes set up as stationary bikes and outdoor cycling considered taboo.
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