Freeman Cebu Sports

Bike to work

EVERY POUND COUNTS - Allan 'Coach A' Choachuy - The Freeman

Bike has been one of the oldest mode of transportationS. Bicycle dates back to the early 19th century. As early as 1817, the 2-wheel bike was invented and it was designed to be glide with or walk with it. The pedals were added to the front wheel in 1869. The bicycle transitioned through history until gears were invented in the early 20th century. However, it was allowed only until the 1930s but was introduced in Tour de France in 1937.

Biking is a balancing act. Once you learn to balance, you will never forget it. The simplest way to learn to ride a bike is to remove the pedals, lower the saddle and start walking around on your bike until you can glide. Both your legs will act as a balance and support. Whenever you are about to lose that balance, step on the floor. It is easier said than done but removing the pedals will force you to learn balancing, pushing off with your legs until you can glide. The second step is learning to pedal the bike and most importantly learning how to stop. There are usually 2 brakes on your bike, front and back. The front brake is for stopping while the back is for control. Avoid suddenly squeezing the front brake as it will make go ENDO, short for end-over or end-over-end. It is a crash wherein the cyclist goes over the handlebars caused by the sudden slowing down of the front wheel resulting in rear portion of the bike to flip over above and behind you. Squeezing the rear brake will also make your bike slide or swerve to the left or right. Others use this technique as an art form in bike which we fondly called “labay lubot” or “drifting”. The best way to stop is gently squeeze the back and the front brake. I usually prefer to squeeze more the back just to be in control but once you feel the bike to skid, you need to let go of the brake to regain traction of the wheel. It takes practice to learn how to stop the bike properly so I suggest you go slow at first.

Safety first. Helmet should be worn at all times even if you are just travelling nearby. That is why it is called accident because you will never know when or how it will happen. Protective eyewear is also necessary with all the dust and road condition we have. We never know what will fly into our eyes, big or small. Once it goes into our eyes, it will cause some discomfort and might lead to accident.

In this time, wearing a face mask is the best prevention in getting the virus. If the face mask restricts airflow when you are exerting effort, you can take it off once in a while especially when you are alone. But you need to put it back if you can see crowded people up ahead. Don’t use phone and never wear an earpiece or headphones will biking. Put up light or blinker if you are travelling late in the afternoon or early in the morning. Avoid wearing dark colored clothes. White, green, yellow are the most visible color or you can get a reflectorized belt. Avoid swerving, sudden change lane and even sudden stop. Don’t get distracted if someone suddenly calls you or someone “sit-sit” you. I usually glance through my peripheral vision but still maintaining focus on the road if ever some calls me. Never turn your head. 

Maintain road awareness. Mandaue city has already installed some bike lanes but don’t be complacent. You should be aware of everything around you, from debris on the road like broken glass or wet/slippery section to dog and cats running around, pedestrians and other motorist that sometimes forget to share the road. Maintain common sense as well that if car is parked on the road side, he or she may suddenly open the door so you have to slow down and make sure you are safely distanced from the car.

Learn the proper hand signal in biking, turning left or right.

During these challenging times when basic public transportation is not yet available, people may opt to bike to work. We must all share the road and respect each other, from the motorists, bikers, and pedestrians as well. Follow all traffic rules and always give way.



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