Beginning

The weather’s better, you’re burned out on traffic, and you hate the gym. You hear it’s “Bike Month” and an idea forms in your head. Could you bike to work? Maybe it’s not that crazy. It might solve some problems. But not before presenting some challenges. So you decide to get some information.

Bike Month

You seek out people who can give you advice.

Bike Month

But they may not have all the answers.

While there’s plenty of knowledge and resources available, no one will be able to give you the exact advice that’s right for you. In the beginning I looked for someone to teach me. I imagined someone who would tell me exactly what I wanted to know, someone like this:

Bike Month

Which was pretty specific to me.

Ultimately everybody’s biking needs are unique. So do research and get advice, but eventually you will learn more by doing. It’s actually not that scary but it takes time.

 

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38 Comments on "Beginning"


May 3, 2012

Seriously, I have so many lady friends looking to learn to ride and I want to host a “How do ride a bike to work in a skirt and look perfect upon arrival” class.

dr2chase
May 3, 2012

Takes money too, unfortunately. That’s one reason you’d like to get moderately good advice for a start. (Fat slick tires, fenders, hub dynamo, low stepover is good for guys, too, think seriously about IGH+chaincase, think somewhat seriously about cargo bike. You could do worse than starting with an Africabike and upgrading from there. Or maybe a Sun Atlas Cargo.)

What IS the answer to the lady-parts saddle question? I assume there is more than one, because even us differently-parted-people don’t agree on the One True Saddle.

May 3, 2012

In general, a good womans cycling seat (good as in, gets good reviews), is the answer. It’s very common for women to neglect buying one for some strange reason. And it’s also very common to hear them say how numb their lady parts are after 20 miles. GET A SEAT!!! The Bontrager Inform RL wsd is normally a $100 seat but can be had for $30 these days.

pocky
May 3, 2012

The answer is to take a couple of days to a couple of weeks to try as many saddles as possible (for multiple rides of the type you plan on doing most) and keep the one that fits you best, and return the rest. Find a local bike shop that will let you do this. Most mail order shops will let you do this too, though you’ll pay for shipping back the ones that didn’t fit right.

Warren
May 3, 2012

A wonky seat that only supports the sit-bones and is open-concept other than that is http://www.spongywonder.com – a New Brunswick business where you talk to the owner, and the kit is less than a lot of pretentious Chinese vinyl pods with ‘ergonomic styling’
I’ve owned mine for seven years and being bony, would use nothing else.

May 7, 2012

The Ultimate Answer to “seat issues” of any kind is The Recumbent. A close second is a seat that was actually made for humans to sit on, rather than designed to “look cool”.

Mr Butts
July 28, 2014

I am a man, but I hear some guys talk about numbing of their man parts.

For me the best thing is to tilt forward the bike saddle until I am sitting on my ischeal tuberosities(butt bones). I ride about 5 hours a week (mostly for commuting, errands), and I don’t have any issues.

Some lady cyclists have asked me about keeping their lady parts fully functioning. I tell them the same thing.

Tilt your seat forward so you aren’t sitting on your gooch!

JP Gal
May 3, 2012

Brilliant and wonderfully funny, as always! I’m forwarding the link to Tina Fey.

May 3, 2012

When I started commuting a couple years ago I took a *free* class through MassBike. It was very helpful. I also talked with a couple folks who had been commuting for a while, and they gave me a bunch of great pointers.

May 3, 2012

There’s a real person in Atlanta like your bike shorts guy in panel #1–except he’s not a cycling instructor. I don’t even think he’s a cyclist. He just stands on the corner of Ponce de Leon and Briarcliff. I always thought he was waiting on a bus, but that’s not the case according to this low-rent documentary about him: “Mr. Understood: The Willy Terry Story.” He’s a really famous street character; I don’t even think Baton Bob has a documentary and he has a unique outfit and he twirls a baton!

 
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