…To keep your balance you must keep moving.”
This past May, I climbed onto a bicycle for the first time in years at the encouragement of my 75 year old father, who bikes several times a week and is a member of Slow Roll Buffalo. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it, and now he and I swap GPS tracking data to see who logs the most miles every week. (It’s always him.)
Father-daughter friendly competition aside, there are many reasons cycling has experienced a global surge in the last six months. They include the reduction of public transportation options and the need for physical activity that accommodate social distancing. Urban bikeshares have reported a dramatic increase in fleet usage since March. Trails and car-free bicycle routes have also seen upticks in traffic — even as cities establish special lanes or even close roads to automobile traffic entirely. In some cities, such expansion is even necessary to maintain social distancing between bicyclists, runners and pedestrians.
Not surprisingly, there are some great online resources for new (or returning) bicyclists. Bikeshare.com connects you to urban bikeshare networks around the world. Bikemap.net offers the world’s largest collection of cycling routes — Traillink does this for North America, with some added features for members. MapMyRide allows you to document and track your own rides. Many countries have resources that are maintained by cycling organizations, such as Cycling UK, USA Cycling, and Cycling Canada. These sources can connect you to local bicycle shops, clubs, and enthusiasts — all great sources for local information. And if you are new to needing bicycle safety pointers, or could just use a good refresher, the NHTSA is here to help.
Hope to see you on the trail!