All over the world gatherings of any number of people are being banned, which has lead to the suspension of most competitions and organised cycling events.
Many clubs are taking advice on organised club runs, and usually settling for a suspension or postponement.
But what about the likes of you and me, just popping out on our bikes? Well, that’s a tricky thing. If you have no symptoms and feel good, then a shot out on your bike in the fresh air could be just the thing to help you tackle this unusual global situation. But, the advice seems to be that you should avoid coming into contact with other people and keeping a safe distance at all times. You might choose to miss the coffee shop, or at least take your order outside, that’s if they are still operating. You could consider phoning your order from outside so nobody has to be in close proximity? I don’t know, but it seems a shame not to try and support these small businesses at this time where there is nothing but empty words from the Government.
Wash you hands before and after you eat, is an absolute must which, to be frank, you should be doing anyway. You should always wash your hands before you eat, and you could do no better for your grip on your bars than wash off that gooey cake before you get back on your bike. Perhaps keep some wet wipes with you to avoid using public or the cafe’s facilities?
There is, in many places, a lot less traffic on the roads which is great news for cyclists, however, where there are cars they are now more likely to be ignoring the speed limit for some reason. Or, so it would appear from my local area where the 20 mph zone had become a race track by the middle of this morning. I guess it’s a case of give them the space and they’ll use it. Perhaps the joy of not being stuck in the normal congestion is going to their heads!
What about cycling to work? Well, it would seem like a good idea if you have to go to your place of work. It would certainly be safer, in many opinions, than public transport. You will also get some fresh air and boost your immune system. Many people are working in industries where there simply isn’t an option to work from home. A lot of those workers will also be very worried about their health, their families health, the future of their employment, and their incomes. It is time for us to support one another whilst being sensible in our precautions, and to be a little kinder to one another.
It must be noted that some countries are banning cycling for recreational purposes because they don’t want accidents to clog up A&E. Whilst this is certainly understandable they are not banning motorcycles or cars, both of which can do far more damage in the event of an incident. I do not see the argument for banning cycling but I would say that we should all SLOW DOWN and take even more care than we do normally, in ALL FORMS OF TRANSPORT. Nobody wants to visit A&E at the best of times, but right now A&E certainly don’t need the likes of us clogging up the system if we can help it.
Cycling away from the public highway on segregated routes should be fine, in my humble opinion, but I would discourage mountain biking on the more extreme routes where injury is a greater hazard. Having lived and worked in Fort William and seen for myself the frequency with which mountain bikers can get it very badly wrong even on the lower grades, and then the resulting injuries and rescue that has to take place, now is not the time to be an avoidable burden to the NHS. Don’t forget, the hills and tracks will be there tomorrow.
At the end of the day this blog post is only my opinion. I am not in the medical profession or a scientist, but I am able to listen to them and to see what is going on around me.
Everyone should be listening to scientific advice and taking sensible precautions as well as deciding for themselves if they really need to make any journey.
Be kind, and take care folks.