Green Impact Sheffield
The University of Sheffield

Cycling Mythbusters


January 21st, 2014 - Posted under: Green Impact 2012/13 - Leave a Comment

I cycle to work everyday and couldn’t imagine ever wanting to commute another way. I honestly feel really sorry for all the drivers stuck in traffic every morning and evening, whilst also knowing that they probably pity me too especially when it’s raining! People always ask me about my commute to work – Is it dangerous? Will I look a complete mess at work? It’s taken me a while to get it right, but now I’m all set up I thought I would set things straight for all those who’ve considered commuting to work but just can’t get past those initial barriers. Join me in the good life!

Bicycling to work is too dangerous…

We’ve all experienced this. Get over your fear by acquiring
experience: plan and practice your riding route before and get used to traffic gradually. I booked some one-on-one road training with a free local service provider: www.pedalready.co.uk. They helped plan my route to work and taught how to be a more visible and aware cyclist. The health benefits of cycling far outweigh the risks.

Bicycling to work takes too long…

Because of traffic levels on my commute to work, cycling is the quickest way for me to travel. For longer trips, consider that you’re saving time by combining your daily exercise with your commute.

I might freeze to death or get too sweaty…

Some bicycle commuters ride in their work clothes, but I prefer to ride in cycling clothing and change when I get there. I also like to keep some wet wipes and deodorant at the office for the warmer months. Many workplaces now have showers, so if you are getting sweaty on the way to work you could plan ahead and keep a towel, toiletries and clothing at work.

In the colder months, the secret is to wear layers of clothes and gloves. The heat produced by cycling will keep you comfortably warm. I started as a fair weather cyclist, but I now enjoy my cycle commute so much that I commute all year-round, apart from when it’s dangerously icy! Invest in some good waterproofs, including overshoes and you’ll never look back.

I’d have to ride in the dark…

Wear a reflective bib or other clothing and use bike mounted lights that can help you see and be seen.

You could have a flat along the way and be late for work…

When you travel to work, carry basic tools, a spare tube, an air pump, and a patch kit. Practice fixing a tyre at home or enrol onto a basic cycle maintenance course, which will give you the confidence you need to make your own repairs. There are also plenty of online YouTube tutorials covering all aspects of bicycle maintenance.

You can’t carry all your stuff on a bicycle…

Clothing can be carefully folded or rolled whilst papers and laptops can be wrapped to keep them dry; both can then be carried in a back pack or in panniers on the bike. I prefer panniers and carry a change of clothes, packed lunch and bike locks with me everyday. Another solution with clothing is to make a car trip every week or two, perhaps on a bad weather day, to carry clean clothes to work and to pick up ones that need to be washed.

Now what’s stopping you?



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