SERVICE AND REPAIR
Wondering where to cycle?
Here we have gathered links to tools to create your own routes and to maps of local cycle routes.
There are a range of GPS tools suitable to attach to your handlebars to help you follow a pre-set route when cycling or you can download routes to you mobile phone instead. Of course, you can choose to take a paper map instead (or in addition as a backup..)
CHOOSING A BIKE
Tax free government cycle to work scheme
Find out how to buy bikes tax free for commuting and work. All the administration is done for your employer through
Bike2Work Scheme or alternatively through Cyclescheme.
Where to buy a bike
See our Cycle shops page for a list of places to buy new or used bikes locally. Also the internet based bike purchases are becoming more and more common. If you do buy off the internet, please take note of below.
The most important element in buying a bike is the sizing. This handy guide will steer you in the right direction Bike Sizing - be mindful that different brands will size slightly differently, so it can always be worth considering a bike fit if you are making a considerable investment in your bike purchase.
If you have not used your bike for a while and need to boost your confidence on the road, adult training is available:
Hampshire Cycle Training provide individual or group tuition at a small cost to everyone.
Independent Bikeability instructors can offer adult training. Search for an instructor on the Bikeability website.
Hampshire County Council is committed to provide pupils with the opportunity to undertake Bikeability Level 2 and 3 cycle training (Bikeability is ‘cycling proficiency’). Bikeability Level 2 is available to Years 5, 6 and 7 and the more advanced Level 3 is available to children in Years 7, 8 and 9 that have already achieved Level 2 standard. Contact your school to find out about training sessions.
Learn more about bikeability on the Bikeability website.
The My Journey project offers Cycle maintenance training courses in Basingstoke.
On public highways, cyclist must follow The Highway Code. In particular, make sure you know the additional rules for cyclists. You do not have to use a bell but you must have lights front and back at night. It is illegal to cycle on the footway (the pavement next to the carriageway) unless it has been designated a cycle way but it is not compulsory to use cycle routes.
Check that your bike is road-worthy before setting off. Here are a couple of nice simple check lists: one from the Richmond Cyclist Training Scheme and the other from GOOD. Remember that bicycles must have working front and rear lights to ride at night.
Helmets do not prevent accidents but good cycle skills can. see https://www.sustrans.org.uk/what-you-can-do/cycling/cycling-safety-and-rules/road-safety-cyclists You are safer if you have good bike handling skills and know how to negotiate obstacles and traffic. If you want to brush up your skills and/or develop more confidence you can always book a session with an accredited cycle trainer.
On the road it is important to both see and be seen - occupy the centre of your lane or ride at least half a metre out from the kerb. You can always move closer to the kerb if somebody overtakes too close, but if you are already in the gutter you have nowhere to go. Indicate to other road users what you intend by road positioning and by looking, signalling and then moving when safe to do so. At junctions occupy the centre of the lane whether you are turning left or right. Be alert and anticipate the actions of others and if possible make eye contact.
for bikehandling skills there are tips at www.britishcycling.org.uk/ridesmart
a few mountain bike skills www.mbr.co.uk/news/mtb-skills-can-practise-anywhere-324917 are useful on offroad sections of a cycle routes due to all the obstacles!
British law does not require you to wear a helmet although the organisers of some cycle events do require helmets to be worn. Helmets do not prevent accidents and there is conflicting evidence on their effectiveness in the event of a crash on to your head. The actual risk of head injury is remote, less than crossing the street, walking up stairs, climbing a stepladder, skating, travelling in a car, etc. Wearing a helmet is therefore a personal decision.
A head injury can occur if you come off head first over the handlebars if you brake suddenly using your front brakes only or if riding down a steep or bumpy section on a mountain bike and not keeping your weight over the back wheel. Learn to brake safely!
Helmets must be fitted correctly or they can cause injury or obscure your vision.
Hampshire Constabulary provide tips to keep your bicycle safe. Includes advice on recording your bike description, registering your bike and locking your bike.