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Ride, sally ride: Denver encouraging women to ride their bicycle

Flowery Cruiser
Flowery CruiserKelly Poto

Advocacy and education programs are focusing their energy on female riders in celebration of Colorado's Bike Month. Over the last decade women participating in bicycling has risen by 20% with the total number still low. According to the League of American Bicyclists women want to get on their bikes and ride but they’re cautious about their safety and are unsure of the rules of the road.

Organizations like The Bike Depot and the Bike Denver are working to increase confidence in these apprehensive riders. They offer women only “wrenching” classes designed to teach the basics of bicycle maintenance. You don’t have to be a hard core road racer or rough and tumble mountain biker to benefit from the knowledge of how to change your tire or lube your chain.

In honor of Colorado Bicycle month, here are 5 tips every woman needs to know before hopping on her bike to ride around town.

  • Remember you are a vehicle. Written into law in 1968 during the Vienna Convention and put into effect in 1977, a bicycle is considered a vehicle and a rider a driver. As a vehicle you are required to obey the same rules of the road as an automobile. Please visit the Denver Biking Law page if you would like to learn more about biking laws.
  • Remember your helmet. Make sure your helmet fits properly. You don’t have to be boring while you’re protecting your head, you can make it fun. Check out these helmets. More about helmet fitting can be found here. Oh, we can’t make a comment about helmets and not bring up about these “invisible helmets” from inventors in Sweden. AWESOME.
  • Remember to use your hand signals. Hand signals notify other drivers and riders of your intentions. Denver has an ordinance that requires riders to use hand signals for turning and stopping. Need a hand signal refresher? Click here.
  • Remember your light. Think you’ll be on your bike after dark? Then make sure your take your light. You want to be as visible as possible to any automobile or bicycle traffic. Our opinion is you can never have too many lights on your bike. Of course, you don’t have to be boring the in name of safety either. Check out these fun lights.

Celebrate Colorado Bike Month by hopping on your bike and riding with a girl friend. To learn more about bicycling safety and enjoyment please visit Bike Denver. To learn more about women and cycling, please visit the League of American Bicyclist.