Cycling is fun! The problem is that as we get older, many people forget the joys of free-wheeling down a hill, legs outstretched and the wind in your hair. But, it's never too late to rediscover the beauty of the bike, be it cycling to keep fit, popping to the shops or getting to work. It will increase your fitness, save you money and put a smile on your face. Go on, get on your bike - we dare you!
Choosing a bike
With the vast range of bicycles available, the thought of buying a new bike can be daunting. Do you choose a mountain bike or a road bike? Should you opt for a hybrid or relive your youth on a BMX? Rather than muddling through and potentially spending a lot of money on an unsuitable bike, visit your local bicycle store, where specialists are on hand to offer expert advice.
Getting back in the saddle
Whether you are dusting off your old faithful (but rather neglected) bicycle, or you have just invested in a shiny new model, it will still need regular maintenance to keep it in good working order. See our Maintenance Tips page for advice on how to keep your bike on the road.
When your bike is suitably oiled, the brakes have been checked and your saddle adjusted, you will be ready to go. Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be clad top-to-toe in lycra to ride a bike and your every-day clothes will be more than suitable attire.
Although it is not a legal requirement, many cyclists opt to wear a cycle helmet. Ensure that you buy your helmet from a reputable company and try it on before you buy it. Helmets, like shoes, vary in size and shape from model to model.
Your helmet should offer a snug fit, without being too tight. It should also be comfortable - if it isn't, you are less likely to wear it.
Nine out of 10 drivers involved in fatal accidents say they didn't see the cyclists, according to Transport for London statistics. By making yourself more visible, you are reducing the chances of not being seen.
Wear bright clothing, even during the day.
Use reflective wrist and ankle bands, badges or stickers.
Always use good quality lights if cycling in the dark and regularly change the batteries.
Assume you haven't been seen and be prepared to react.
Lock it or lose it!
Whilst most of us recognise the benefits of cycling, whether it's commuting to work or popping down to the shops, cycle thefts around the Borough have risen by 23.5% since the beginning of 2010. And, with 65% more of you getting around on two wheels, Cycle Woking recommends that you assess your current bike security measures and think about moving them up a gear.
Find out more about how you can improve your bike security here.
Getting out and about
All you need to get cycling is a working bike and the great outdoors. It really is that simple. Just getting out exploring can unearth beautiful scenery, a quirky coffee shop to stop for a break or a new town to explore.
If you prefer to plan your route, rather than leaving it to your two wheels and pure chance, check out our network of cycle routes (called the 'Planet Trails') across the Borough here.
Join a club
If you prefer to have your cycle trips organised for you, or you would prefer to cycle in a group, why not join a club.