Cycling is a terrific activity for seniors for many reasons, it exercises many different muscle groups, helps prevent weight gain, and it is a low-impact form of exercise that puts less strain on the body than other sports.
Like any outdoor sport, it is important for seniors to take safety precautions when going for bike rides. Also, it is important to always consult a medical professional before beginning any new form of exercise.
What are Some Important Safety Tips?
There are some safety tips that seniors can practice to ensure that they ride their bikes safely. Some things to do include the following:
Wear a Helmet
The single most important rule for bikers is to wear a helmet. Cyclists of any age should use a helmet to protect the head in case a fall occurs. Seniors may be used to not wearing helmets, but traffic has increased dramatically everywhere, so it is important to always be cautious.
Even mild blows to the head can cause injuries. The majority of fatal bicycle accidents involve serious trauma to the head, and wearing a helmet lowers the risk of head injuries by 50 percent.
Seniors may have bikes in the garage that have not been used for some time. Old tires may not be safe to ride if the material has degraded over the years. Do not assume that cleaning off the bike is enough to make it rideable.
Have a professional check the tire pressure, brakes, and seat to ensure everything is in working order so that the bike is safe to use. Also, make sure that the bike is the right size.
When cycling, wear bright reflective clothing, and use front and rear reflectors so that motorists are aware. It is also important to carry a phone if one goes out for a bike ride.
Choose Paths Wisely
Unless one has maintained biking skills and abilities consistently over the years, it is a good idea to start off slowly and to choose easy terrain for biking. Even small hills can put strain on joints when going uphill.
While going downhill is easier on the body, picking up too much speed at once is not advisable. Keep traffic patterns in mind. Pick a time of day when traffic is light, and stay on designated bike lanes. Better yet, find a park that is closed to motor vehicle traffic so that one can enjoy cycling away from the pollution of crowded streets.
Review the Rules of the Road
Generally speaking, bicyclists must ride with the direction of traffic and obey the same rules as cars. However, regulations can vary by state and location, so it is a good idea to become familiar with local bicycle laws before riding. Local riding groups can help one familiarize with the rules of the road. Review all hand signals if it is necessary.
Participate in Classes
Taking a class is a great way to improve one’s skills, meet new people, and build confidence in traffic. Just as with motor vehicles, navigating the road with other bicyclists, drivers, and pedestrians takes practice and preparation. By giving the proper attention to safety issues in advance, seniors can enjoy biking for years to come.
What Should I Do After an Accident?
If a senior bicyclist is hurt in an accident, it is important to seek medical attention right away. Bicyclists are more vulnerable than car drivers, so accidents are often serious.
It is also crucial to hire a lawyer after an accident. A lawyer will help with filing a personal injury claim.
Atlantic City Personal Injury Lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm Represent Injured Elderly Bicyclists
If you were injured by a negligent driver while you were biking, we can help you. Our Atlantic City personal injury lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm help injured bicyclists get the compensation that they need. For a free consultation, complete our online form or call us at 609-926-3300. Located in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Atlantic City, Linwood, Galloway Township, Cape May, Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton, Ocean City, and Woodbury.