In order to participate in cycling, there is some necessary equipment. The most important piece of equipment is the bicycle which the rider uses in order to compete in cycling events. Another essential piece of equipment is a helmet in order to protect a rider's head if they fall off. Riders also may wear gloves in order to prevent blisters from the bicycle's handlebars. It is also very important to hydrate oneself when participating in cycling; having a water bottle along with something to hold the water bottle on the bike is very common.
Athletes typically wear athletic biking shorts along with a biking shirt. Both of these are worn to give the rider the most comfort possible when cycling. The pants are typically padded and made of comfortable material in order to keep the rider from cramping/rashing. Gloves can also be worn to prevent blisters on a rider's hands from the handles.
For cycling, the only real training equipment you need is anything you would use in a cycling event. This includes a bike, proper clothing, water bottle, etc. Other training equipment needed would be used to work out as cyclists need to be in peak physical shape in order to compete. This is mainly for the legs which are the most important body parts when cycling but cyclists do work out their whole body. Some people may also have an indoor bike in order to train in harsher climates.
Cycling is an incredible sport that is a great way to stay in shape. With cycling, there comes a lot of different types of accessories. With today's increase in technology, there are even more exciting accessories that one could acquire, such as the smart helmet that contains white, red, and orange LEDs for each turn signal. You can also acquire a GPS cycling computer that can be set up with your smartphone and help you track your workout and let you know where you are. These are just a few examples of all the exciting accessories that come with cycling, as companies are continuing to grow the sport and make everyone's bike rides far more enjoyable.
A base layer is considered to be the foundation of a cyclist's wardrobe and key item for comfort while on the bike. A base layer suit will wick sweat away and help you regulate your body temperature. It will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. You can have a baselayer in suit form, or just a shirt. There is no option that is specifically "better" as it all depends on your preference.
Bib shorts and suspenders to a regular pair of shorts. The suspenders are integrated into the short and are not removable. Some are made of lycra fabric for suspenders, and others use a different type of fabric like mesh. What makes bibs great is that there is no waistband or uncomfortable elastic material. You are also less likely to feel like your oxygen intake is being restricted, which will improve your performance. Another benefit is that they are extremely comfortable and very lightweight. A set of bib shorts will cost around $75 depending on the quality.
The most essential equipment needed for cycling is the actual bike itself. Over the past decade, bikes have gotten more functionable, reliable, and most importantly, more fun to ride. When you are buying a bike, you have to know what you are going to be using it for. Are you going to be on the road or in the dirt?
Road bikes are lightweight and efficient with drop handlebars and narrow tires. These types of bikes are mainly built for speed and can really only perform on concrete. Mountain bikes have wide knobby tires for riding on narrow dirt trails. Styles include hardtail, full suspension, and cross country. These bikes are not cheap. A mountain bike can be anywhere from $400 to $9,000, while a road bike can be $800 and go all the way up to $15,000.
In order to make sure that your tires are always prepared for the roads or trails, you are going to want a bike pump. There are many different types of pumps that will help inflate your tires. One of the most standard pumps are track pumps. They are popular thanks to their high capacity and make inflating tires to high pressure very easy. There is also the mini pump that you can put in your jersey pocket in case you need to inflate your tire mid-ride. For a successful bike ride, it is a good idea to be safe and have both of these options at your disposal.
Traveling with your bike can be very complex and difficult. It is important to have the proper bike bag or box to keep your bike protected when traveling the world. Using a bike bag is much lighter than a box making it much easier to carry and is also more likely to not be overweight at the airport. While it may not be as protective as a box, a soft bike bag is still likely to get the job done at keeping your bike safe. You are going to need to break the bike into pieces a bit when you are doing this, but after a few times, it should become a relatively simple task.
If you use your bike to get to work or go to other social events or public places, then you are going to want to get a bike lock. No matter where you go, it is not smart to leave your bike unattended in public. When looking for a type of bike lock, there are chain locks, D-locks, and cable locks. Cable locks are lightweight and convenient, but are less secure than solid shackles and links. Chain locks are big and tough, and are probably best if you live in a city. The sight alone of a chain lock is enough to deter most would-be thieves. The D-lock is a metal shackle with a removable crossbar. They are accompanied with a cable as well to loop through quick release wheels. A simple cable lock can cost as little as $5, while a D-lock can cost around $50. The chain locks are the most expensive, selling for a little over $100.
A bike rack is a very necessary piece of equipment for avid cyclists. Especially if you are mountain biking, the chances are you are not going to be biking directly from your house. A lot of people drive the path of where they are going to be biking. A bike rack attached to the car is necessary so you do not have to try and stuff the bike in the trunk of your car.
There are numerous different types of racks that work very well. If you own a sedan or a compact car, then a trunk mounted rack is likely the best option for you. They are extremely popular, although they limit how often you can use your trunk. Another good rack is the roof rack. This will give you access to your trunk, and you simply lock your bike to the roof of the car. Hitch mounted racks are another good option that are great for SUV owners. These racks sit your bike further away from the vehicle.
If you do not want to spend money at the shop and want to prepare and clean your bike yourself, then there are some different tools that you are going to need. Along with a pump, you will also need a wrench set which is perhaps the most essential tool. A brush set will also help you keep your bike clean after a ride. Going to the shop and purchasing a tool kit is likely the best way to go, as it will give you everything you need to keep your bike in top shape.
Cycling is a form of exercise that is extremely physically demanding. Therefore, you need access to a water bottle at all times. Most water bottle holders will fit all kinds of bikes, and you want one that is simple to install and will give the bottle firm support all day long. The last thing you want is a holder that will not stop wiggling while you ride. You want a holder that can attach easily to your frame, and can fit your favorite reusable water bottle. Also, you want to be able to easily access it mid-ride.
When your bike chain turns around the gear sprockets and pedal cranks, it creates a lot of friction. To limit wear and tear, you need to regularly lubricate the chain with oil. You want to consider your normal driving conditions when finding the best lubricant for your biking needs. Light oil is best for chains in average to dry riding conditions, as they are good at penetrating the bushings of the chains to minimize the amount of wear. Thick grease is used for rainy or wet conditions, and wax is the best for extremely dry conditions. You can buy oil at almost any bike shop and it will rarely cost you more than $10.
Clipless pedals are a significant bicycle innovation. In the past, a popular type of pedal for bikers were pedals that had toe clips. You would have to tighten a strap to get in and out of the pedal, making it difficult. Clipless pedals were created to make getting in and out of your pedal easier. So even though you still technically clip in, they are called "Clipless Pedals."
Clipless pedals are similar to skiing technology; they attach the shoe to the pedal kind of like a ski boot to the binding. Since your feet are locked in, you are going to have much more power throughout your stroke when climbing and accelerating.
If you are a casual rider who simply bikes only for fun or to get to work, then basic rubber pedals work fine and clipless pedals are likely not necessary. If your goal is to achieve fitness, or you are competitive, then clipless pedals are definitely a better option.
The two types of clipless systems are walkable clipless systems and also road systems. Walkable clipless systems are ideal for walking or even hiking. They are ideal for off-roading, commuting, or touring. Road systems are designed for road bikes where maximum efficiency and aerodynamics are all important.
No matter what type of bike ride you may be going on, cycling gloves are essential in helping you have a successful ride. The best cycling gloves will help you retain your grip, reduce hand irritation, and allow you to use less pressure on your joints. If you are a serious rider, then bike gloves are a requirement. You are going to want a pair of cycle gloves that are lightweight and breathable, and also made of a water and sweat absorbent fabric.
A pair of mountain bike gloves are designed for grip and protection. They all have padded palms coated with anti-slip material providing superior grip to the handlebar. Road bike gloves, however, are not necessarily designed for grip, but simply to reduce as much discomfort as possible that is caused by vibrations from the bike.
A cycling jacket is used when you are biking out in harsh or cold weather conditions. Cycling jackets have ventilation so you will not be drenched in sweat when you reach home. A cycling jacket should be not too restrictive or too loose. You also want to stay warm, but not overheated. It also needs to be made of quality materials. Since you will generate heat while riding bikes, you should wear a jacket that will make you slightly chilly if you are standing still. It is also a good idea to explore buying a jacket that is made with waterproof or breathable fabrics that will keep rain from soaking in. Overall, a jacket is a good investment if you live in an area where you may need one, and it will cost anywhere from $80 to $120.
Cycling jerseys serve a lot of different purposes. They keep you comfortable, prevent sunburn, and give you a place to store the things you may need to carry. It is a much better option than just wearing a cotton t-shirt. A cycling jersey will keep you cool in the warm weather, and warm in the cool weather. There are large variations on how the jerseys fit. Some are very tight, especially if intended for racing. Others are more loose and give a more casual look. Cycling jerseys are also very effective in how they block out the sun, as manufacturers provide an SPF rating similar to sunscreen.
Perhaps the best thing about the cycling jersey is that most are made of a synthetic fabric that is designed to carry sweat away from the skin so it can evaporate from outside the jersey. By moving the sweat away from your skin, the jersey fabrics will help you maintain a constant body temperature.
What makes cycling pants unique is that they are skin tight. This is because on a windy day, you are not going to want baggy clothes flying everywhere and bothering you. The better the fit, the more aerodynamic you will be, and the faster you will go. Like cycling shorts, they are also built for comfort, and have a padded design that will keep you from any soreness throughout the ride. Your skin will also be protected from negative effects of sweat due to the fabric that the pants are made out of. Depending on the quality, a pair of cycling pants will cost you around $20 to $60.
If you do not own a cycling jersey, then you can wear a shirt. However, you should avoid wearing a cotton shirt at all costs. If you are not going to wear a jersey, you should wear a light and breathable shirt made by a company like Underarmour. There are also many short sleeve cycling jerseys that are sold at a cheap price, but made out of similar material. If you are an avid cycler then a short sleeve jersey is likely the way to go.
Cycling shoes have rigid soles, clips, or cleats that attach directly to your bike pedals. Cycling shoes are designed to keep the foot rigid so there is no power lost through your feet and all your leg power goes directly into the pedal stroke. The shoes will snap directly into your pedals, similar to how a ski boot locks into a ski. Road biking shoes will have two to four cleats and are extremely rigid. They are made from materials like carbon fiber and are as light as possible to support speed. Mountain bike shoes are a bit larger and heavier, with two-hole cleats. They are made of longer laster metal and are more comfortable to walk in. The cost of cycling shoes is anywhere from $50 to $200.
Cycling shorts are better to use than regular shorts when biking because they are padded so they will give you more comfort when you are spending hours on the saddle of your bike. Another benefit is that they will help with vibration control. High frequency vibration can be very uncomfortable, and a pair of nice cycling shorts will do a great job of preventing such a thing. The shorts should be made with a soft and comfortable microfiber shell fabric that will wick perspiration away from the body.
When you are biking, it is likely you are going to need to carry a small amount of items, but you will likely not want the bulk of a backpack. A fanny pack is the perfect piece of equipment that has the ability to provide a small carrying capacity in a simple belt-like design.
There are some things you want to consider when purchasing a fanny pack. You are going to want to identify what type of cycling you will be doing. Also, if your bike frame does not have a bottle carrier, you may want a pack that includes a built in bottle carrier. Storage is also an important consideration. Style is another feature that you should consider when buying. Some packs are more simple looking or more flashy than others, and it is important to note if you want to put that in consideration. For a price of around $30, this could be a very useful piece of equipment to have with you.
Bringing along a mini first aid kit for your bike ride is a very good idea. Especially when you are out on uneven terrain or isolated areas where it is hard to reach emergency services, there are going to be risks associated with cycling. There are plenty of kits that are offered that are light and small enough for you to forget the kit is even there. A typical first aid kit contains bandages, safety pins, compress, blister plasters, and mini tweezers. The typical price of one of these kits is around $20.
Bikes often both have front and back lights on them. The purpose of front lights are to be able to see in front of you when you are biking in the dark. The purpose of a rear light is so you are visible to cars and other people from behind when biking in low visibility. Over the past decade, brands have worked to increase the output and reduce the weight of these bike lights.
The two key technologies that have driven the progress in bike lights are the switch to efficient LED lamps and lithium batteries that will pack more light into smaller packages. The result of this has been brighter lights, with longer run times in smaller systems. You are going to want a rear light as well. It is a good idea to buy a front and rear light together, as you will get a slight discount as opposed to buying each separately.
A pair of clear-lense cycling glasses can be really effective on cloudy days. They will give you great visibility in order to see certain obstacles.
If you are a downhill mountain biker, you likely use goggles rather than glasses. These can be clear-lensed or dark-lensed, but the main purpose of them is to protect you from the wind and keep dirt from getting into your eyes for a cost of just $40.
While it's not as exciting as traveling through certain landscapes outside, indoor bike training is still something that is really popular. If you want a quick workout or if the weather outside is no good, then a stationary bike trainer is an amazing piece of equipment. These are very pricey as they can be up to $1,000, but if you use it enough it will be well worth the investment.
A squeaky chain as a result of rust or filth is something no cyclist wants to hear while trying to enjoy a ride. Sometimes rust can cause so much of an issue that it becomes difficult to pedal. Bike chain lubricant does a lot more than just getting rid of noise. It will also help the chains work like they used to, allowing you to pedal efficiently in order to have a great bike ride.
Fenders and mudguards are a necessary piece of equipment if you are cycling off road in muddy weather conditions. There is a variety of shapes and sizes, and they protect you from road gunk and water that gets flung off your wheels as they spin. The two types of mudguards are braze-on and clip-on. This is an easy decision because in most cases, the bike will make it for you since it will either have eyelets for braze-ons or it will not. Clip-ons are built with brackets and straps which attach to the fork legs, seatstays, or seatpost. The fork legs, seatstays, and seatposts are tubes on the bike in which you can attach pieces of equipment on it. The seatpost is the tube directly below the seat, and the seatstay is located behind it diagonally connecting to the wheel. The fork legs are located by the front tire and help keep the tire in place.
The more wheel coverage a mudguard offers, the more spray it will prevent. A full-length mudguard will protect you from tire gunk, and also your frame from being pelted by salt infused road grit. You want a fender that is a rounded shape, if they are too flat they will not offer much protection.
If you own a bike, you are going to need a patch kit. You want to have it with you when you bike to save yourself time if you ever run into tire troubles in the middle of nowhere. Patches are extremely important to cover up any pinholes that may become present in your tire. A good patch will stick to the tube enough to keep air from leaking out, a great one will act as a second skin and actually strengthen the tube. Patch kits come with patches in a few different sizes, sandpaper, and a tube of vulcanizer which will act as the "glue." The average patch kit will only cost you around $6.
If you are unfamiliar with the bike path you are on, it is a really good idea to bring a map with you. You can store the map in your fanny pack or bike jersey. If you are biking on the road, a map might not be necessary, since you have your phone that you can use as a GPS. However, if you are mountain biking or off-road, a map is vital. Almost all mountain bike trails offer maps, so when you enter you can grab one and store it accordingly.
On a long bike ride, whether you are in the mountains or on the road, it is a good idea to pack snacks with you. Many people spend up to three hours or more on their bikes, so they are definitely going to need a break/energy boost at some point. Packing small healthy snacks such as granola bars or fruits is a very good idea to stay healthy and keep you energized throughout the bike ride.
Having a high quality pair of socks is more important than most people think when it comes to comfort while riding. You are going to want a well designed pair of socks that fit well and are suitable for your biking needs. They should breathe well while regulating temperature in both hot and cold environments. Most high end socks rely on Merino wool to help reduce odor and increase durability and warmth. Socks cost as little as $10 and can be as expensive as $40. Another benefit of cycling socks is that they are very snug to help keep things such as dirt from getting in.
Spare parts are often sold separately to keep you from purchasing a new bike completely. You can buy new pedals, new brakes, a saddle, and more to help constantly repair your bike so you can use it to its fullest potential. Brakes might be the most important thing you should purchase to fix up your bike. After a few years, your brakes may lose their effectiveness. Therefore, it might be a good idea to go to the shop and get them replaced. You can also do this with chains and gears to improve the riding ability of the bike.
A spare tube is an essential piece of equipment to bring with you in case there is a flat tire. If you have a large puncture or blowout on your bike, you may need to replace your tube. This is a pretty long process as you will have to take the wheel off of the bike and remove the current tube from the wheel. You will then need to replace the tube. You can carry the tube under your seat or in your fanny pack, and it is a great thing to have if there is so much damage that you are unable to fix it with patches.
Cycling sunglasses are extremely popular as performance eyewear is designed to integrate seamlessly into your ride. High performance sunglasses feature wide lenses to cover your entire field of vision and protect your eyes. They are also very lightweight and grip the bridge of your nose and temple very well. Lenses are very important considerations when purchasing cycling sunglasses. When you are mountain biking, you want lenses that highlight reds and browns to improve trail visibility. Road lenses on the other hand will enhance shadows to help you see bad pavement before you hit it. These sunglasses are not cheap, costing about $120, but they will give you prime visibility that will help you enjoy your ride much more.
On sunny days, you are going to be under the sun for quite a while. This much time outdoors will definitely lead to sunburn if you do not properly apply sunscreen. You are going to want to apply sunscreen to any exposed skin that you may have on your ride. You should use sweat resistant sport sunscreen with a high SPF of at least 50 in order to have a ride where you do not worry about sunburn. A bottle of this type of sunscreen will cost you anywhere from $10 to $25.
A tire lever helps you take the tire off of your bike. A good one to buy is Pedro's Tire Levers which are very cheap but are still able to get the job done. You get a lever for only $5 and they are lightweight and strong in order to easily pop off your tire if it has a flat.
It is so important for a cyclist to have the proper amount of pressure in their tire. If you are not paying attention, then the amount of air in your tires can become off enough to cause a large amount of issues. You are going to want to want to get a gauge while you pump your tire so you know how much air you need. If you own a floor pump, it is a good idea to get a separate gauge to more accurately estimate the pressure. An affordable separate gauge can be used for any cycling discipline, and will help you avoid issues when you are out on the track.
Especially if you are doing indoor cycling, it is a good idea to have a towel with you. The towel is there to help you wipe off sweat and stay cool during your workout. It is often pretty uncomfortable just letting sweat drip everywhere, so wiping yourself off with a towel every now and then is definitely a good idea. While the towel is not necessary when you are outside, you should always have one near you when you are doing indoor training.
A very important part of cycling is staying hydrated in order to keep endurance and strength throughout a ride. Having a large water bottle that can keep the liquid cold is extremely important especially in longer races. Many people strap a water bottle holder onto the side of the bike in order to have access to it at all times throughout their races and training.
Cycling equipment can range up to hundreds of dollars or can be affordable depending on the brand and quality you buy. Some indoor and outdoor cycling bikes can get close to $1,000 but cheaper options are also available. These options may be a bit lesser quality or used in these cases but still do the same job. This is the case for most types of biking equipment. Equipment such as the proper clothing may not be as expensive but can cost a lot depending on the brand and quality.