Thursday, June 14, 2012

Bicycling Basics

Tips for Campus Bike Riding

Katie Avra, Outreach Coordinator
Contributors: Shane Tedder, UK Sustainability Coordinator & Russell Williamson, Bike Enthusiast
“Nothing compares with the simple pleasure of a bike ride.” -JFK

A bicycle has been a means of transportation for centuries.  I’m sure all of us remember how excited we were the day the training wheels finally came off and we were free to roam the driveway or neighborhood. It seems as though the fun ended when we turned 16 and got our license, but those days are not gone forever.  Riding a bike can be an energizing and fun way to commute to campus and around town.  

“Not only is riding a bike good for your health and the environment, but also your wallet,” says Shane Tedder, UK Sustainability Coordinator.

The coordinated efforts of UK Parking and Transportation Services (PTS)and the Bicyle Advisory Committee now provides a Bicycling Basics manual for the campus bike rider.  This fact-filled manual details bike and rider safety, bike registration and parking, repair stations, campus route map, trails and shared lanes, communication tips, as well as bike responsibility and locking procedures.
Below are some reasons to ride:
Saving Money
  • Avoid buying a campus parking pass which can cost about $300.
  • Save an average of $100 per month in gas, car insurance, car payment, registration, license plates, and tags.
  • With the money you will save from not driving to campus, you can purchase a nice bike.  According to Russell Williamson, “A nice bike will cost you about $300.”
  • Register your bike for FREE with PTS. This deters theft and helps with gathering bicycling data.
  • Wildcat Wheels offers a free bike check-out program; bikes are available in a variety of sizes to any UK student, faculty or staff.  Bikes are available for semester-long check-outs.  A student/staff ID is required for check-outs.
Positive Health and Environmental Impact
  • Get your daily recommended 30 minutes of cardio vascular exercise.
  • Lose an average of 13 lbs. your first year biking.
  • Increase your circulation, with potential for reductions in blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and even gout. Increase your overall energy. Reduce impact from car pollution and emissions such as carbon dioxide.
Tips for New Riders
  • To gain confidence in your biking skills, attend free workshops and classes for all UK students, faculty and staff; topics include how to fix a flat tire, cycling culture, tips for buying a bike, etc.
  • Try riding on the multi-use Legacy Trail.
  • Utilize the new bike service stations on campus.
  • Invest in a good helmet that fits securely.  Helmets are not provided through Wildcat Wheels.
  • Dress in layers for the weather.
  • Secure your bike with a chain and lock to bike racks, not trees. No bike rack where you want to park? Go online a request a new bike rack in a specific campus area.
  • Obey road laws, respect others on the road, and signal to other drivers and make eye contact.

Links and Resources

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