Monday, April 14, 2014

Riding a Fixie


Not well suited to the streets of San Francisco, single-speed bikes are perfect for flatter regions and can be loads of fun.  Riding a fixie will likely feel very strange at first and take some getting used to. It gives you a strong feeling of being connected to your bike and gives you far more control. You have to learn to slow the bike down with your legs and it’s a great way to build up strong muscles.

For me my first fixed gear ride up and down the road was a bit strange, different, a bit terrifying, but at the same time a rush, as I felt so in contact with the road. Although intrigued by its beauty, I initially dismissed the bike based on the fact that I couldn’t coast.  Riding a fixed gear will most certainly seem strange to road riders at first, but you quickly learn the subtle skill of easing off to brake and before too long the single ratio becomes second nature.

If you’re not totally committed to the idea of being “fixed”, buy a bike with a flip-flop hub. This system allows you to take off your back wheel and flip it around- on one side of the wheel is a fixed cogwheel (sprocket) on the other a cogwheel that allows you to freewheel.  In fact this is what I recommend for most riders. You get the benefits of a single gear bike, without the challenges and the advanced skill set required to safely ride a fixed gear bicycle. Because they have no gears, fixies do not have to be expensive bikes.

Do yourself and the rest of the people out there a favor though,  keep the brakes on your bike and the clothes on your body.

Riding "the Liberator" by Baseline Bicycles


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