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Thread: Cycling after your first accident

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    Cycling after your first accident

    From the age of about 7 I had a bike, and for the rest of my childhood it was a great source of freedom, first in the smallish town and when I was a bit older in a large city, allowing me to get into town etc.

    When I was in my first year of university I had an accident, entirely outside my control - a car coming in the opposite direction turned right across me and I ploughed straight into him. Fortunately I was completely unharmed physically (unlike the front forks of my bike and the passenger door of the car) but I was shaken up and I've never ridden since. Lightning frequently strikes in the same place twice, for good reasons.

    I was wondering how regular riders deal with this kind of thing? I used to love the physical exertion of cycling and the wind in your hair etc but, in British cities and on British country lanes, cycling feels like asking for more trouble than I can bear thinking of. Ignorance was bliss, I guess.

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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    I used to cycle a lot - 50 miles a day - more on weekends. But I gave it up - It just takes up so much time. I've been trying to make an effort to get back into it but where I live, the traffic is not so friendly to cyclists and there is no shoulder on the road. People drive 65 (or faster) in 45mph zones. I just seem to be chicken lately. The last few times I was out on the road I had several cars honk at me and flip me off. One (teenagers) drove right up next to me and shouted to try to scare me, it worked, I didn't expect it. Another driver was in a large pick up truck pulling a covered trailer and honked and swerved such that the trailer seemed to come towards me. Let's just say my heart was racing. Sadly,I have not been on my road bike since.

    I have been making an effort to do mountain biking off road on the weekends, but I was going with my brother in law, and several months back he broke his leg playing soccer, so we put that on hold. He's now finally healed, so I think we will make an effort to get back out. I need to, my belly's grwoin'

    I did have my old road bike built back up for him, but the bike in is NY right now. Next chance I get to bring it back we can also start road riding. It will be his first experience doing that. I think he will like it. We'll just have to pick some roads less traveled, but there is also a paved path that goes trough the better part of the state we can ride on too.

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    Higher Entity Jeannie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gnuyork View Post
    there is also a paved path that goes trough the better part of the state we can ride on too.
    Is that part of the East Coast Greenway? Or the Applachian Trail?

    We have a river trail here which is also open to cyclists.

    Jeannie
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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeannie View Post
    Is that part of the East Coast Greenway? Or the Applachian Trail?

    We have a river trail here which is also open to cyclists.

    Jeannie
    I'm referring to the silver commet trail - goes all the way to Alabama, though I have been on the greenway too (I think).
    Last edited by gnuyork; Mar 26, 2015 at 02:26 PM.

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    Dive Watches & Japanese Moderator OTGabe's Avatar
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    I used to do some sprint triathlons back in my younger days, and I did quite a bit of road riding during my training. Never got hit by a car, but was run off the road numerous times and had some nasty crashes as a result. It put me off road riding altogether, and I rarely do that anymore. I switched to mountain biking which is a huge passion of mine, and crashing is simply part of the game. But at least the crashes are under my control, and involve trees and rocks, not vehicles driven by distracted drivers. As for getting back into cycling after a crash, I always recommend going on a greenway or other such paved trail. It's essentially like riding on the road, but with no risk of being hit. Thankfully around here we have hundreds of miles of trails throughout the city, as well as lots of old rail beds that have been converted to leisure use. They're a great way to get reacquainted with the feel of cycling and increase your comfort level before venturing into more stressful situations. Surely there must be some paths around London that allow bikes but not motorized vehicles.

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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OTGabe View Post
    I used to do some sprint triathlons back in my younger days, and I did quite a bit of road riding during my training. Never got hit by a car, but was run off the road numerous times and had some nasty crashes as a result. It put me off road riding altogether, and I rarely do that anymore. I switched to mountain biking which is a huge passion of mine, and crashing is simply part of the game. But at least the crashes are under my control, and involve trees and rocks, not vehicles driven by distracted drivers. As for getting back into cycling after a crash, I always recommend going on a greenway or other such paved trail. It's essentially like riding on the road, but with no risk of being hit. Thankfully around here we have hundreds of miles of trails throughout the city, as well as lots of old rail beds that have been converted to leisure use. They're a great way to get reacquainted with the feel of cycling and increase your comfort level before venturing into more stressful situations. Surely there must be some paths around London that allow bikes but not motorized vehicles.

    Lol, I do a lot of falling off my mountain bike... mostly roots are the culprit.

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  9. #7
    I had a really bad motorcycle accident a few years ago, and I was hesitant to ride again for a while.

    My then-girlfriend now-wife wasn't too happy with me riding, and her reluctance didn't help me any.

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    b& m8 CanadianStraps's Avatar
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    When I was a kid, before the golden age of the 'mountain bike' I had a BMX constrictor in gold and metallic red (i'd kill to still have it) that I essentially treated as a downhill mountain bike. We would crash down the ravines through all kinds of crap, hurting ourselves constantly. I guess with it being so voluntary it was easy to climb back on the horse so quickly and thoughtlessly. One day I was riding it on a sidewalk with no hands, because my hands were full. I hit a pebble, developed a wobble, couldn't fix it and couldn't put my hands back on the bars, and bailed. The way I fell, I impaled myself gut first into the turned bars, which by that point had no grips on them. I still have a small semi-circular scar on my stomach (now tattooed over), and I don't know that I'll ever forget that little blip, but I've lost the memory of countless monster crashes into trees or berms or whatever. Funny how that is.

    Now I ride the bonny and never think about crashing: I've never been in a motorcycle accident. I don't really put myself in much danger of one though: I don't commute with the bike, or even tale it on busy roads or highways. It's just my freedom vehicle, for ridge roads and country routes. Sometimes if I even see another car on the road I'm using at the time I feel like a piece of the experience has been stolen.

    I say go out and get a bike, put the past behind you and get your freedom back.

    Edit: this is what my BMX was like. *sigh*

    Last edited by CanadianStraps; Mar 26, 2015 at 05:17 PM.
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    Mountebank MarkO's Avatar
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    I cycled around London on a daily basis when at uni.

    I was knocked off by a van once.
    Snapped the bit that joins the handle bars to the front forks when going hard up a hill - fell off
    Snapped the bit that joins the peddle to the crank while going round Elephant and Castle - fell off
    Cycled full speed into the back of a car that stopped suddenly, bent front forks - fell off and had to carry bike home
    Stopped to talk to a girl while on a slope, foot was stuck on peddle - fell off (very embarrassed)
    Drank scrumpy then tried to cycle home - fell off, but didn't hurt a bit.

    This was in the days before helmets and cycle lanes. If my kids go to Uni in London I will get them an Oyster Card not a bike.
    MB2, SOH, Aquascope, Tangente, MM300, Blackbay, North Flag, Officer, Visitor.

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    The Dude Abides Nokie's Avatar
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    I have broken more things that I can remember from riding motorcycles, but when bucked off, I get back on and ride again.

    I just try not to break the same body parts twice.....
    "Either He's Dead, Or My Watch Has Stopped....."
    Groucho Marx

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