Fitness / 29.07.2016

How to be more confident on a bike

By Ellie Hughes
As thousands of cyclists compete in Prudential RideLondon this weekend, Olympic Gold medalist Dani King shares her top tips


If your workplace is anything like the healthy office, it’s full of people (often women) who like the idea of cycling to work but don’t feel happy that they’d be safe on the road.  We can’t have been alone as in 2013 the first RideLondon took place. The three-day cycling event aims to encourage more people to cycle safely and more often.

And for good reason – as a free and healthy way of getting from A to B you can’t beat cycling. A longer ride on the weekend can be a pretty addictive feelgood fitness fix, too.

So we asked Olympic gold medalist Dani King, how can women be more confident about enjoying life in the saddle?

Read more: 7 life-improving confidence tips

“There has been a massive increase in women’s cycling ever since the Olympics – for example my Mum has a bike now,” says Dani. “But if the roads were better, with fewer potholes and more cycle lanes, more people like my Mum would feel more confident to ride further a-field.”

“I know it’s almost impossible to have cycle lanes everywhere like in Belgium and Holland because there isn’t enough room but the Government does need to put some money into the roads infrastructure – there are so many people cycling now and it needs to be safer.”

In the meantime, here are Dani’s tips for how you can build your confidence:

1 Do a women-only ride
Try Cycletta or an organised Sky ride. If you can do a ride on closed roads where cars aren’t allowed, that helps to build confidence.

2 Get lessons
You do need to know what you’re doing to make sure you are safe on a bike. Don’t be embarrassed to do your cycle proficiency or a women-specific course. Take a look at Bikeability.

3 Remember the little things
There are small things you can do which inexperienced cyclists might not think of. For example, when I come up to a junction where a car is waiting to pull out, I always try to make eye contact with the driver – that means I’m a lot more confident that they’ve seen me.

4 Don’t ride in the gutter
You don’t want cars to be tempted to squeeze past you as that can put you in danger. Ride in a position where you’re not in the way but cars have to make a point of overtaking you

5 Be seen
I see so many people out just in black kit, with no lights. You’re asking for trouble, you can’t complain if you have an accident because you’re not really helping yourself!

Click here to find out more about Prudential Ride London

Do you have any more tips for how to be more confident on a bike? Tweet and share with us @healthymag or join in the conversation on our Facebook page

How to be more confident on a bike
Article Name
How to be more confident on a bike
Inspired by Prudential RideLondon and want to know how to be more confident on a bike? Olympic Gold medalist Dani King shares her tips for owning the road.
Publisher Name
Healthy Magazine
Publisher Logo