One of the few good things to come out of recent events is that we are challenging what we previously took for the norm. An example is the increasing number of people who have started cycling, whether for fun or to get to work and avoid using public transport.
Of course, there are things to consider when you take on a new mode of transport. For example, on a dreary autumn morning or overcast summer evening, you need other road users to see you while you are cycling. Wearing high visibility (high vis) clothing and reflective straps is the best way for you to stay safe and be seen by other road users and pedestrians.
Cycling to work is literally as easy as, well riding a bike… however, in order for you to reach your destination safely, you need to be mindful of the following:
Make sure your bike is well maintained and its tyres are properly inflated before setting off. Dress to be seen: lights as well as high vis clothing and accessories are the most effective way to make sure that you can be seen by motorists at a safe distance. Always wear a helmet; not only could it save your life, but if it features reflective panels it's an additional way to keep you visible. Dress for the occasion and carry a high vis waterproof jacket, helmet cover and backpack cover, so you are prepared when it rains.
Know the rules of the road
Most cyclists are also motorists or have at least ridden in a car or bus. It is worth brushing up on the highway code every so often. We're not suggesting you need to be prepared to take a theory test, but you should be aware of where you can and can’t ride and what the road signs mean. Do not run red lights! No amount of high vis will save you if you jump a red at a junction. Respect other road users and the rules of the road.
Pay attention to the road, and those around you, and be aware of your own limitations. Stay hydrated and well fuelled. Make eye contact where possible with other road users and ride predictably. Many larger vehicles have blind spots; do not be tempted to undertake them, in case they make a last-minute decision to turn left. Be present. This is one of the greatest side effects of cycling: you are forced to be in the present moment, meaning that you are not left over-thinking about the day’s events.
Cycling safety - be safe, be seen
From beginner cyclists to weekend club riders, I challenge you to give a valid reason as to why you cannot incorporate a bike ride – even for part of the journey – into your daily commute.There is little excuse for us to rely on our car or public transport for the whole journey to work.
The most common objection is people's anxiety about their safety while cycling. While a level of concern is valid, the best way to cycle safely is to dress so that those around you can see you any time of the day or night. At night, having a bright light is not enough for a speeding motorist to be able to see you from a safe distance. Fortunately, developments in highvis clothing mean we no longer have to worry about looking like a traffic cone or ruin our well thought out colour coordination; high vis clothing and accessories come in a wide range of colours and styles.
The benefit of high vis clothing is that it works in all light conditions, unlike the little white flashing light on your handlebars. In addition to the bright high visibility colours, the best high vis clothing has reflective strips, making it easier for you to catch the eye of the people around you, for all the right reasons.
To view our full High Vis range CLICK HERE
Come rain or shine - be safe, be seen
When preparing to cycle to work, you need to plan ahead and look at the weather forecast. Even during the longer summer days, here in the UK the weather is unpredictable. In the morning, you may set off in blinding sunshine, to be caught short on your journey home, as clouds have formed and have decided to empty themselves, just as you are leaving the office. There is no point getting frustrated; it is not something that you can control. You can, however, be prepared for all weather and visibility conditions with a few extra pieces of clothing and accessories. Consider a waterproof jacketand backpack cover, which will keep you and your belongings dry and visible
The beauty of high vis and reflective waterproof jackets is that even in broad daylight, you benefit from 360 degree visibility. You can be seen more easily than someone wearing a bland anorak or cycling jersey, from every direction. At night, or in low light conditions, the reflective strips really pay off, sending a strong signal to anything with headlights that you exist and should be avoided. Cycling can be a hot pursuit, so you should consider investing in a gilet, vest or sash for when the weather is a little warmer. These are great for anyone that may have to cross or travel on a road, even while walking, running or horse riding. The vests are also very lightweight and easy to pack away if conditions improve, or you are no longer on the road.
To view our full High Vis range CLICK HERE
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