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How To Build Confidence On The Bike | Cycling Skills With GCN

How To Build Confidence On The Bike | Cycling Skills With GCN

– Confidence on the bike
requires time in the saddle, but if you’re not very confident you’re probably not going
to want to ride your bike, so it can become a little
bit of a vicious circle. Well, today I’m delighted to say that I am joined by GCN Espanol’s Maya to help us out, cheers Maya. – Thank you Heather. And you’ll be pleased to know
that there’s some easy ways and easy tips to get more
confidence on the bike. So, let’s take you through them. (digital beeping)
(logo whirring) – Knowing what you should be doing, even if you haven’t yet mastered it, is still going to be a
strong starting point. If you know various actions and lingo at least you won’t be surprised if you suddenly hear
someone shouting “Car back,” or doing a weird maneuver with
their hand behind their back. – Yeah, we’ll come back to that later. We’ll start with some
basic skills on the bike to get more confidence. (upbeat music) – If you’re new to using clipless pedals or maybe you’re still riding in trainers and ready to take it up to the next level, well these exercises will help to get you clipping in and out really smoothly. It does take a little bit of practice, but once you’ve gone into cleats you will never go back, trust me. So it’s worth spending
a little bit of time and perfecting this now. – Yeah, simply try to clip and unclip in the comfort of your own home. You can just hop on your bike,
and get a wall on the side, and just practice clipping and unclipping. You can even do it
watching the television. And remember that practice makes perfect, so do it a lot of times
till it feels second nature and you don’t have to think about it. – [Heather] Yeah, you can even
just find a tree or something if you’re outside and you
want to practice that way. – Once you are comfortable
clipping and unclipping on your home, just venture to the outside. Try finding a easy place with no people, even a park or the grass, and just start riding around
and trying to clip and unclip, practice once and again,
and even find a way to stop and then start again, finding your feet on
the pedal and clip in. It just takes practice, and just relax, and if you fall it doesn’t matter. – And then you could even
make a line or a marker that replicates a junction, so you can practice riding up to it, stopping and uncleating just
like you would on the road. And even try doing this whilst
you’re talking to a friend, just so you really ensure
that it becomes second nature. When you’re starting out it’s a good idea to learn to unclip on your
left and on your right, but then you want to
think about which country you’re going to do most of your riding in because generally it’s
safer to be able to unclip and put your foot down
away from the traffic. So, for the majority of you that’s probably going
to be the right side, it would be for you Maya, but for us Brits it’s
going to be our left side. (upbeat music) – You’ve sorted your feet so
let’s go to the upper body. For cycling you need
control and coordination, and taking your hands
out of the handle bar takes some practice. – Yeah it certainly does. We’ll start off with a
really small movement. So just taking one hand off, hovering it just above your
handlebars for a few seconds, place it back and then
try with the other side. So this time you can easily grab back on as soon as you need to. And it’s a good idea to practice this on a nice smooth surface so
you can purely concentrate on the skill rather than worrying
about where you’re going. – [Maya] Next step, take your hands from the top handlebars
down to your drops, one at a time and back up
again in a continuous pattern. Then pause on the drops
and do some maneuvering around some obstacle,
staying in this position. Come to a stop using your
brakes in this position too. – It’s time to bring your
hands back up onto the top because now you’re going
to practice indication, when you’re going to
have to move your arms a little bit further afield. So start simply with just
indicating left and right, do one at a time, holding
your hand out to the side, bringing it back and
swapping to the other side. – Obviously you don’t have
brake signs in your bike, so you need to indicate
when you’re slowing down and you can do that by placing
your hand with your palm down and saying that you’ll stop. And you have to be able to use this sign. – Yeah, it’s a very important one. Another sign that you
might see people doing is pointing to the ground. It might look a bit strange to start with, but actually they’re
usually pointing out a grid or a hole, or something that
you really want to avoid. So it’s definitely worth knowing, and if you’re riding in a group you want to carry on that signal so that the people at the
back also get the information. – The final signal to note does require a bit of shoulder mobility. Placing your hand behind your back and pointing towards
the middle of the road indicates you are pulling
out from your line and going around an object
or overtaking something that is moving really slowly. – If you’re not quite confident yet, or ready to do these maneuvers, just make sure that
you’re riding with people who are happy to indicate for you. And remember you can
still communicate vocally, so make sure they know what
you’re doing using your voice. But don’t forget the
traffic can’t hear you, so you need to make sure
someone has clear indication. And talking of lingo, there’s
all sorts of varieties of saying whether there’s a
car in front or a car behind, but just make sure you keep it
nice, and clear, and simple. – It’s understandably if you
feel nervous around the road. Sharing it with other
users does involve trust. So, to be seen it’s important
to have a high visibility vest or a bright colored T-shirt. And also, if you have a
back light in your bike, that’s perfect. – Yeah, exactly. Well there’s also a few other
skills which you can practice to help you feel more relaxed
and confident on the bike. One of which is drinking. Obviously you’re going to need to drink when you’re riding your bike, so to start off with just practice having your hands on
the top and just simply touching your water bottle,
bringing it back up. Once you’re happy with that, you can start to just pull it out
slightly, pop it back in. And then finally when you
feel nice and balanced you can take your bottle out all together before placing it back in. And again, do this on a nice smooth road so, if you need to, you
might want to actually glance down at your bottle to start with until you know exactly
where to put your hand. – Getting out of the saddle is something people struggle with, but it’s a really good skill to have, because it not only helps you
when you’re doing a steep hill that maybe if you don’t
stand up you could not do, it also gives your butt a rest. – Yeah, so for this, just again start by, nice and simply with your
hands on top of your hoods, and find a gentle incline
and a nice, smooth road to start with. – [Maya] Stick to familiar
roads you’re used to riding, because this helps you
with the confidence. – Yeah, exactly. The more familiar you are with anything, the more relaxed and
easy you will find it, and the same goes for your bike. So try and get a little bit aware of how your bike works and
some of its components, so you’re going to be able to trust it. But also, you can then
get into a good habit of doing a few pre-ride
checks which will make sure you’re really nice, and
safe, and confident. Confidence and enjoyment go hand in hand, so just try and smile
and enjoy your rides, and you’ll find that your confidence will naturally build over time. – If you enjoyed this
video, don’t forget us, to give us a thumbs up. Don’t forget to subscribe on the globe, and if you want to see another video of how to brake, just click down here. – And if you want some basic tips on how to do some bike maintenance, well Mark’s got a video
for you just down here.

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