To avoid misunderstandings and to try to ensure the safety of all participants on club rides, we require participants of our club rides to observe some basic safety precautions.
- Please wear a helmet.
- No headphones.
- Be able to fix a puncture or bring inner tube/repair kit so we can help you do this.
- If you decide you can't continue or need to bail out of a ride, ensure you inform someone of your intentions.
The reasons for this are;
- From personal experience, I can vouch for the effectiveness of a helmet in the event of an accident. There is always the possibility of an accident when riding a bike, which may well not be your fault. However, although a graze is painful and a broken bone can be debilitating while it heals. A head injury carries greater potential for life changing consequences. Had I not been wearing one on a club mountain bike event in 2018 , I would be fairly confident that I would have incurred a minimum of a fractured skull and it could well have been worse. The prospect of hitting your head skidding off the road when encountering a bit of gravel on a fast downhill section when you could be be going 40MPH plus, doesn't bear thinking about.
- Riding in a group presents addition benefits but also risks for participants. If you're wearing headphones you may not hear the alert of a road defect or warning of upcoming hazard. Not only may you miss a warning of a hazard, but if you were to come off, you may also involve other people in your accident. Additionally, headphones isolate you from the rest of the group. Group riding is a social event as well as a physical activity.
- There is no expectation of mechanical expertise when people come on a club ride. But you can't expect other participants to have a particular size widget for your specific bike. There will always be assistance offered by club members, but everyone should have the means to repair a puncture, as a minimum.
- Very occasionally, a participant on a ride may feel unwell, suddenly remember an appointment they are late for, etc, and need to depart from a ride early. Please let someone else on the ride know your intention. If it is because you don't feel you can keep up, let the ride leader know and we can generally find a solution. We don't want to leave anyone behind. It is also the case that if you depart from a ride without telling anyone, the rest of the participants may spend a lot of time looking for someone unnecessarily.
At the end of the day, we ride bikes because we like to do so, and we ride in a group because there are numerous advantages to doing that as well. There shouldn't be any ego's that make other ride participants feel uncomfortable and any inappropriate or bullying behaviour will not be tolerated.