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Momentum Mag’s top 10 tips for first-time bicycle commuters.
1. Practice stopping on your driveway or on a side street before heading out for a longer ride.
2. Be cognizant of other cyclists, pedestrians and vehicles around you. Pay special attention to staying out of the blind spots of motorists.
3. Use a bell to alert other cyclists and pedestrians that you are passing them – you can also say “passing on the left.”
4. Remember to shoulder check before turning.
5. Follow the rules of the road.
6. Use your hand signals to show which direction you’re heading. A bent left elbow, fingers raised skywards, means turning right, while pointing your arm straight out to the left indicates a lefthand turn. Pointing your fingers down with a bent left elbow signals that you plan to stop.
7. Use bicycle lights when riding at night to be more visible.
8. Avoid squeezing between a car and the curb on the righthand side.
9. If biking near parked cars, check to make sure that someone isn’t about to exit their vehicle in front of you.
10. Bike with friends to make the trip more fun!