27th March 2020

Cycling in a time of Coronavirus

We are all being asked to stay indoors while the UK struggles to come to terms with the effects of coronavirus. We should all adhere to government guidelines and do our bit to help our health workers combat the crisis.

As a Bicycle and Repair shop, we are exempt from the enforced closure of businesses, in recognition that cycling is an advised – and essential – mode of transport for many key workers. We also passionately believe that cycling is a vital way to maintain physical and mental health while we are all on lockdown.

British Cycling has decided to suspend sanctioned (organised) cycling activities until the 30 June, and, in line with current guidelines, the Bike Coop does not advocate cycling in groups or in a way that puts you at higher risk (and therefore potentially increasing pressure on an already over-burdened health system).

We fully endorse, and will reinforce through all our communications, Government guidance about responsible cycling and the need to maintain social distancing.

There has been a lot of – quite fuzzy – guidance on how, when, and with whom we are allowed to exercise. It is being interpreted in a range of ways, so we are responding with our Top Ten ‘guidelines’ for the moment, as we see them.*

*These suggestions are relevant as of 26 March, and of course subject to change – as is everything else at the moment!

  1. You do not have to give up cycling.
  2. There is no guidance on suggested ride lengths or limits but you should /can cycle once a day, and keep your ride relatively short – up to an hour seems sensible.
  3. Cycle alone where possible, or with one other member of your household if you feel that is safer. You are also allowed to cycle as a family (e.g with children under 16), provided you all live together.
  4. Cycle on routes you know well and that are close to home. Now is not the time to try a new trail, or go ‘off piste’.
  5. Cycle on routes that are comfortable for your ability level. Do not push yourself and risk injury.
  6. You can continue to train, but you must do this alone or with one other member of your household; adhere to well-known routes; cycle for up to an hour.
  7. Avoid remote areas – travelling to these areas is not deemed essential travel.
  8. You can use your bike to shop for food and other basic necessities, for commuting, and to help someone in need. This cycling can be done in addition to your daily exercise.
  9. We do not recommend mountain biking on the trails at this time. Trails are being closed due to overcrowding, and – no matter how proficient you are – riding these trails do pose an additional risk of injury.
  10. Safety check your bike before each ride and keep it well serviced – this will reduce the risk of injury.

More information can be found at the British Cycling website.

There are also some great ideas on how you can use your bike to help your community during Coronavirus.

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