The first key skill of road cycling is to know how to safely and effectively manage your group riding routine. Even though the first times you ride in a group might be confusing and your performance level can be decreased, don’t worry. There are some essential cycling techniques you can learn so the group riding experience can be a good one.
You deserve your group riding routine to be an enjoyable period of time so you can feel confident enough to give the best of you. Achieving a group harmony when riding may be tough, but not impossible.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re new to cycling or you’ve been doing this sport for years now. The important thing is, if you really want to join a cycling group and experience the team spirit, then, have a look at the below-mentioned group riding pointers to keep in mind so you can really appreciate this type of cycling.
Confidence is definitely the key to successful riding. Try to let your emotions and worries at home and just focus on your cycling experience. Without feeling confident, no other rules matters. Believe you can really have the right mind-set and riding plan that will help you achieve your main goal. Choosing a supportive, experienced riding group can work as a confidence booster too.
Value your riding skills, experience and passion and let them lead your group riding time to be a worthy one. After working on your confidence, learning all the following rules will definitely become easier and funnier as well.
Pick you deserved position
By that, we mean choosing a position you know that best represents your group riding level. You cannot place yourself first if you have just begun your group riding practice. The best thing to do, is to stay in the middle position of the riding group. But this only if you’ve gained some group riding experience. Otherwise, placing yourself in the back is a smart thing to do and you will eventually have more space to breathe and maneuver and also to keep an eye on the other, more experienced riders.
Follow the wheel in front
Usually, most group rides are performed in two columns or double paced line. Sometimes, even in a single column. If you’re not the first one to lead the group, then, you must always follow the wheel of the cyclist’s bike in front of you. Don’t just let yourself lose and plonk in the middle.
If you really want to keep yourself and your teammates safe, and also allow everyone to ride efficiently, then, following this simple rule is a must. Experts advise if you’re new to group riding, then, placing yourself last might be a great idea because you can see how the group rides, moves and get organized.
Careful not to overlap wheels
Another thing is to follow the wheel of the rider in front of you, and another one is to know the distance you need to keep in order to keep yourself and others safe. You can ride closely with the wheel in front but not too close. If something happens to the first rider, you need to make sure he will be safe and you as well by having enough distance to stop. Also, when the rider in front of you suddenly goes across the road chances are your wheels will collide and you’ll end up crashing.