Unwanted Advice

When I first started biking I didn’t know what I was doing. But I knew I was having fun. Yes, loads of fun, until…

Unwanted Advice

Yes, the unsolicited advice from strangers started coming. Of course some of it was useful advice. But no matter what it was also condescending. I wished they would be quiet and let me enjoy my ride. If I wanted bike help I could turn to my bike shop or the internet. I decided then to never give advice on the road.

Now with years of experience I have tons of tips I want to share too. When I bike in spring my inner monologue goes something like this:

Embarrassing Advice for Newbies

And when I see the newbie swerve I have to wonder:

The Newbie Swerve

But I just keep quiet and let everyone enjoy their ride and hope they keep riding… and maybe someday giving advice to others.

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44 Comments on "Unwanted Advice"

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“Find your zen” – good advice, that!


When I first started cycling again, as a woman in my 30s, I seemed to get lots of unsolicited advice from men ages 45 – 60, most of condescending. It was a real struggle between picking out the useful bits from what they had to say, and wanting to leave 50 million tire tracks on their backs.

Claire – I’m in the same boat as you. I do triathlons, but I’m also a mom of a 2yr old who works full time, so I do lots of riding, but mostly by myself when I can find the time. Last summer I met up with a local group in town for a ride but was so annoyed by all of the unsolicited advice from all of the slightly older than me guys in the group that I’ve never ridden with them again. I know they meant well, but I was like “Dudes! I’ve done two IM triathlons –… Read more »
Sam J

How do I let Bikeyface know that because of the illustration and Internet distribution processes, she has no inner monologue? I hope I didn’t just type that in a public forum just now.


the weaving/not keeping a straight line is a major peeve with me as well… otherwise I keep the “some oil will get rid of that squeaking” comments to myself.


Since I’m usually the lone bicyclist out on the roads in my town, I have no one to which I can give advice. I did have a roommate years ago back when I started to ride who was more experienced that I, and he gave me a lot of good advice. He also wasn’t a complete stranger. I think it’s the whole idea “unsolicited advice from strangers” idea that turns people off.