Tag Archive for: clothing

Optional equipment for safety’s sake

Editor’s note: This is the fourth article in a series directed mostly toward beginners. The introductory article covered checking the bicycle for safety,  and each article links to the next. So far we’ve covered lights, rear-view mirrors, and bells. Lights are required by law at night. Mirrors, and in most places, bells, are optional equipment.

Optional Equipment: Policy and Good Sense

The American Bicycling Education Association requires that everyone wear a helmet in its on-bike sessions, but makes no policy statements about any legally-optional equipment. Such statements can do as much harm as good. Convenience (“just hop on the bike”) can be at odds with having to manage equipment and change in and out of special clothing. Expense may be a concern.

So: You decide what measures you will adopt to improve your comfort and safety, beyond what the law requires. Generally, longer rides merit more preparation, as comfort takes on more importance. The special clothing that recreational and racing cyclists wear isn’t just for show. But some options apply to any ride.

Bright & Tight

There’s no doubt that some colors show up better than others. Although bright-colored clothing is optional — and no substitute for li