Health Advocate Blog

Follow these tips for safer bike rides

It can save your life!

While there’s nothing better than riding your bike, it comes with some serious responsibilities. Hundreds of bikers are killed in the U.S. each year, so it’s important to remember these tips to help keep yourself, your children, and others on the road safe. 

  • Check your brakes, your chain, and the air in your tires regularly.
  • Wear a helmet, and make sure it fits properly!
    • Your helmet should sit on top of your head in a level position and not rock forward, backward, or side to side. The helmet straps should form a V under your ears and should be snug but comfortable.
  • Follow the rules of the road, just like in your car:
    • Stop at stop signs and follow traffic signals.
    • Ride on the right side of the road — if available, always ride in a designated bike lane.
    • Move in the same direction as traffic on one-way streets.
    • Yield to pedestrians at crosswalks.
  • Be aware of parked cars. Drivers may open their door in front of you without realizing you’re there.
  • Don’t be distracted by electronics and other devices:
    • Avoid headphones or listening to music while cycling—you need to be able to hear what’s going on around you.
  • Make eye contact with vehicle drivers:
    • Make sure they’re paying attention before crossing in front of them or pulling into their lane. Just because you can see them doesn’t mean they can see you.
  • Announce yourself to pedestrians. When coming up behind them, you can say something like “passing on the left!”
  • Walk your bike in crowded areas.
  • Don’t ride on sidewalks, especially in busy areas.
  • Don’t wear long or loose clothing. It can get caught in bike chains or wheel spokes.
  • Use lights or avoid riding after dark.

Following these guidelines can make riding your bike a much safer outdoor activity.