Beginning any new sport or activity requires some consideration of gear and the costs to get started. Cycling is no different, but as with most sports, you can keep it very simple and affordable or spend top dollar and go for high end, professional gear and bike. Let’s just start with the basics and once you take a few rides and can tell this is for you, you can always add more gear as you discover what your needs are.
- Bike: Well this is obvious, but as your most expensive investment, your bike is critical to your comfort and the success of your venture into the world of cycling. Talk to plenty of cyclists and not only ask their advice, but ask them to share what has worked and not worked for them in regards to a good quality, affordable bike. Someone is always upgrading to the latest, greatest high tech machine out there and needs to off-load their older but quality model. REI has some great detailed tips here to help you learn what to look for when shopping around.
- Helmet: Most states and cities require helmets by law, no longer leaving this optional. Consider your helmet an insurance policy of sorts. Make sure to not only try it on for fit and comfort, but adjust the straps to see exactly how much adjustment is possible. There are different styles for road biking, racing, mountain biking, commuting, and recreational. Options such as additional padding for custom fit, removable liners for all season riding, and removable visors are considerations depending on your cycling focus. If you think you will be doing some distance riding, weight and construction material. This post by REI gives detailed points to consider before your purchase.
- Eye Protection: Sunglasses or clear lenses are a must to protect your eyes against the damaging UV rays as well as the wind, dust, and insects you are sure to encounter. Proper eye gear is a safety and comfort consideration, so choose wisely. Wrap around frames protect from wind and debris and keep your glasses snugly in place. Choose lenses with 100% UV protection and made of tough polycarbonate plastic.
- Moisture wicking clothing: Although padded bike shorts sure make things comfortable on longer rides, the moisture wicking properties of shorts and shirts is of higher consideration. You will likely be working up a sweat and wicking that away from your body keeps you more comfortable longer.
- Water bottle or hydration pack to keep you hydrated on your rides.
In addition to this gear mentioned, you may want to consider padded gloves, a jacket or vest if you expect to cycle in cooler or wet weather, tights or leg warmers, and cycling shoes with clip/pedals.
Don’t get intimidated by the pros out there with the high tech options, start with the basics and get on the road/trail and enjoy yourself!
Featured photo source: Pixabay.com