Safety tips for mountain biking

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PHOTO: Arrive Alive

Road safety does not only refer to the safety of pedestrians and vehicles but also to the general safety of anyone who shares the road. Arrive Alive put together a safety guide for mountain bike safety when cycling on the road and riding on a trail.

“Mountain biking is a highly enjoyable activity for those who enjoy physical fitness – yet, it can also be one of the more dangerous sporting activities if not approached with the necessary caution and preparation. It is essential for just about any mountain biking fan to understand the fundamentals of mountain biking safety.”

One of the most important steps to safety starts long before you get on the bike. According to Arrive Alive, being smart and using common sense can go a long way to preventing injury.

PHOTO: Arrive Alive

Arrive Alive’s preparation advice: 

  1. Be aware of the weather. Check the latest reports and determine how the weather will affect the trail.
  2. There is strength in numbers – Don’t ride alone, particularly in remote areas. In case someone is injured, it’s best to be with at least two other people, one to get help and one to care for the injured rider.
  3. Always study a map of the trail before you go riding, and know the possible challenges and how long your trip might be. Don’t get caught unprepared for a steep incline, tricky terrain, or darkness.
  4. Know where you are and where you’re going – inform friends or family where you will be riding and when you expect to return.
  5. Plan a ride to finish before nightfall just in case you have bike problems or you go a little off route.
  6. Plan exit routes as well, so if there are problems at any of the stages of your trip, you are able to confidently decide the quickest and safest way to services that you need.
  7. If it is a new trail it is more important to take a map, compass, and/or GPS unit. If the weather changes, things can look very different in the fog or rain.
  8. Plan for a worst-case scenario – always carry a mobile phone or another type of communication device for emergencies. Make a note of the relevant telephone numbers for emergency services.
  9. Check that the batteries are charged or that you have spare batteries.
  10. Be well prepared with enough food, water, and equipment to last in case of an emergency.

Arrive Alive further suggests that you know your body and its limitations. “Don’t try to push yourself beyond those limitations. Think about what you are attempting to do and trust those instincts. The consequences of trying to “carry on” can be pretty severe, especially where you are riding on trails far from civilisation.”

Compiled By Gypseenia Lion