Riding skills needed?

Martinet

Member
Have started riding as a senior with ebikes after long time not riding. What skills are usefull or needed to ride on roads and bike lanes? I saw a recent Court video in which he discusses bunny hopping curbs. Should I try to learn this or merely lifting the front wheel; what a good way to learn? Any other skills needed on account of higher speed of ebikes versus what I can generate with aging legs alone.
 

David1

Active Member
If you can find another ebiker to ride with. Ebikes are a whole nother animal. Like going from a snail to a cheetah. These things rule , highly maneuverable. I'm still learning to blend with traffic. Mine is like a Ferrari , keeping my speed down is my current lesson. Lights are a big help in the daytime. I ride alot in residential areas and I can tell cars can see my blinking light through bushes backing out of driveways. A helmet mirror is a must for me, what you loose in peripheral vision is made up by monitering traffic approaching from behind. Cars act very peculiar around bikes, anticipate this and don't get flustered.
 
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J.R.

Well-Known Member
Have started riding as a senior with ebikes after long time not riding. What skills are usefull or needed to ride on roads and bike lanes? I saw a recent Court video in which he discusses bunny hopping curbs. Should I try to learn this or merely lifting the front wheel; what a good way to learn? Any other skills needed on account of higher speed of ebikes versus what I can generate with aging legs alone.
Read Sheldon Brown, arguably one of the best cycling teachers, modern cycling has had.

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/beginners.html

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/frame-sizing.html

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/articles.html

In addition to knowing "stuff", time in the saddle will be your best teacher. It's great you're back in the fold! Enjoy your cycling and time permitting, come back and share your experience.
 
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harryS

Well-Known Member
I was maybe 11 years old, the first time I tried to hop a curb. I think this has happened to every kid. The front wheel fell out of the fork. Loose nuts. This prompted me to do bicycle maintenance for the next 56 years. Also convinced me not to jump high curbs. My sidewalk riding is limited, but where I live, almost every curb is wheel chair accesssible these days.

Traits I wish every bike rider had? Mostly good manners. I hate it when two bikers ride abreast on a narrow path, taking up 60% of the width, and they see oncoming traffic and refuse to yield. What happens when two groups like this meet?

A skill I deem useful is shifting knowledge. If we ride our bikes like they had no motors, we would move up thru the gears while starting and downshifting back when stopping, keeping the gears in the best spot for easy pedalling and best use of our limited energy. With a motor, it's no different, but seems like people just wanna pipe in 1000 watts and twist a throttle.
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
@Martinet welcome back to cycling! Just because an ebike can go faster than you could by pedaling alone doesn't mean you have to go that fast. Start with gears that would be comfortable for you to pedal without power and get used to the new (and pleasant :)) sensation of ebike riding. The motor and battery will work better and longer if you do some of the work when starting after a stop instead of just gunning a throttle. On hills, use those easier to pedal gears and work with the motor to climb. If the motor starts cutting out on a hill then you might be pushing it using to much power and not enough pedaling. This can cause overheating and temporary motor cut out, so ease off the throttle a bit, especially if you're riding on a hot, muggy day.

I'm a big fan of front blinky lights, too. Especially in city riding where cars don't always see a cyclist. Ebikes are supposed to be legal as a bike in all 50 states according to federal laws; however, there are some cities where trail or park roads may be limited, so check with a local ebike dealer to clarify this. Mostly, trail riding and bike lane riding are governed by common courtesy, same as with a regular bike particularly if the trails or lanes are also used by walkers and runners. Depending upon the style of electric bike that you have, jumping a curb might not be the best option for you or the bike. Personally, I use the curb cutouts or gently ease the front then rear wheel over the curb. You don't want to slam the motor and battery by doing a hard jump off a curb especially on a bike with no suspension. Hard on the body and you really have to keep your eyes open and watch for oncoming or turning traffic if you're not stopping at that curb.

Mostly, get out there and have fun, Martinet and tell us where you go. A pic of you and the bike uploaded here would be cool too.
 

EddieJ

Well-Known Member
Another useful tip is in respect of when riding on the road/highway, and you are approaching a parked vehicle or similar and need to overtake it. Be aware that following vehicles will probably not be aware of the fact that you are riding a pedelec, and might not anticipate the speed that you are riding at. This can lead to drivers overtaking as you approach the stationary vehicle, which could lead to you being hit.
Make sure that you adjust your speed and take a good look over your shoulder, or in the mirror before overtaking. It could save your life.
 

wren

Member
What skills are useful or needed to ride on roads and bike lanes?

Roads: remember that every driveway or other access point is an intersection, not just where roads meet.
Lanes: if you're in a bike lane on the street just remember it's only a painted line and the driver who is looking at their cell phone will not be stopped from running you over.
Paths: on shared use paths, you're the big guy so please be exceptionally courteous to pedestrians and slower riders.
"Bunny hopping" Is fun, but not usually necessary. Watch a few videos and give it s try over a line or crack to start... you'll get the technique ... you gotta push down first.