Address: 670 Houze Way, Roswell, GA 30076    Phone: 770-642-4057    Hours: Mon - Thurs 10am -7pm,  Fri 10am -6pm,  Sat 9:30am - 5pm,  Sun 12pm - 4pm

Group Riding - DOs and DON'Ts

 Cycling is a beautiful sport.   There is something special about the simplicity of riding a bike.  It gives us the freedom we all crave and allows us to travel at our will to places that would otherwise be too distant by foot.

After the first few miles (or months) of simply a “riding a bike” we all learn that there is so much more to it.  It’s a competition against ourselves to see how far we can push our bodies and minds while also knowing that it is beneficial for our health.

Then there is the social aspect of the sport.  Riding in a peloton (herd of bikers) you interact and socialize with others who share the same passion for the sport as you.

We want you to enjoy your time on the bike; we also want you to be safe while doing it.  Here are a few tips on how to be safe and mindful of others during a group ride:

  • Follow the leader – most group rides, from the most beginner friendly to the more advanced, tend to have a group leader.  They are in charge of making sure that rules are followed and since they have ridden the route often they are ones to give good advice when it comes to safety. 
  • Don’t get discouraged – Sometimes leaders will comment on your riding (constructive criticism), it does not mean they don’t like you, it means that you might be doing something that could potentially endanger the safety of the group and disrupt the rhythm.  They are just trying to keep the group together safely so everyone can enjoy the ride.  It might even help you become a better rider!
  • No leading without knowing the route - Being upfront trying to lead while not knowing the route is a good way to get riders lost, or worse, potentially causing an accident when people are turning at wrong points.  Don’t know the route?  Stay behind the leader.
  • Do not play music – unless you are with your best group of friends and all of them love hip-hop, avoid putting music on your phone or doing something that might distract or take the joy out of someone’s ride.  Not everybody likes metal and most riders are out to enjoy a good time of meditation.  Keep the radio for your solo rides and commutes.
  • Do not chat too much or talk on the phone – Some rides are more social than others; however, try to keep your focus on the bike ride.  Most people are there to get a work out and while the occasional chat is nice it can also become a distraction.  Go hang at a bar after the ride and chat your lungs off with a good pint of beer .
  • Do not overlap wheels - Unless you are riding in the pro peloton with 200 guys there is no need to overlap wheels in a road full of traffic.  This is a hazard that most cyclists overlook and by default end up seeing the asphalt on a very personal level.  Keep distance between you and the guy up front.  Also learn how to read other riders as riding skills may vary in the group.  You are responsible for your own front wheel.
  • Bring your own supplies – Sometimes we do forget a tube or the CO2 cartridge but be ready to take care of yourself during a ride.  Most cyclists are willing and able to help but it is important to be self-sufficient.  Bring your phone and at least a credit card in case you need to call your significant other or UBER to take you home.
  • Check your bike before the ride starts – It’s no fun to stop the group every 5 miles because your GPS has fallen off, your tires have low pressure or you’ve dropped the chain 3 times.  Make sure that your bike is in top shape before every ride and take it to the shop at least once a month for an inspection. 
  • FOLLOW THE RULES!  - The term Social ride or C pace usually means a slower or moderate pace; A-Pace or Up Tempo means fast and for the more experienced rider.  Do not go and show your “mad skills” on the social group or don’t show up on your Unicycle at the “fastest road ride in town”.  This will eventually land you in a place you don’t want to be.
  • Be comfortable with your skill level – Everybody wants to get better and part of that starts with acknowledging and evaluating your current status.  Do not ride “over your head”.  Look what happened to the rabbit when he/she raced the turtle, steady and persistent wins the race.
  • Smoothness trumps Surges – A smooth ride is a fast and safe ride, surges should only be done when trying to drop the group, which defeats the purpose of a group ride.  Surging (attacking) is for racing where your intent is to leave the group behind.

Those are just a few suggestions that will help you and your fellow cyclists enjoy a good time together.  While some of these do not apply to all group rides, they are good as a “rule of thumb” if you are riding with a particular group for the first time.

Make sure to take a look at our ride / event calendar and come ride with us!  We will be more than happy to answer any questions and also be your riding buddies .

Like the Bike Roswell! Guys and Gals say, “Lets ride our bikes”!

Training Tips - Rollers or Trainer?

 

Training Tips – Rollers vs Trainers

Don’t let your fitness plummet during the winter, keep yourself going with an indoor trainer or rollers.  These are very efficient training tools that can help you stay in top shape during the winter months, so you can roll into the ’18 season harder than ever.

Why choose one over the other?

While you can use all of them for strength training each one delivers slightly different benefits.  Here is a quick snapshot showing trainers vs smart trainers vs rollers:

Trainers and Smart Trainers

Trainers are the easiest way to get into indoor training.  They just require you to hop on the bike and pedal.  Falling off a trainer is very rare, you are more likely to fall off rollers.  You can train hard on an indoor trainer and reap huge benefits from it.  Users also tend to become mentally stronger since they must constantly pedal on an environment that doesn’t provide much entertainment and “suffer through it”.  Trainers come in different trims.  We will quickly cover Magnetic and Fluid then go a bit into Smart Trainers.

Here is a snapshot on how Magnetic trainers compare to Fluid trainers:

Smart trainers take indoor training to a whole new level.  You get the same benefits of a trainer with the added benefits of it being more entertaining and providing a more dynamic workout.  These trainers can be paired up to “video game style” simulations (e.g. ZWIFT) making them very entertaining while seamlessly providing structured workouts.  They come equipped with their own power sensors, so it is the ultimate tool for the serious rider trying to get faster.

Rollers

Rollers are another great way to get your dose of indoor training.  These are good for the more experienced rider looking to improve their pedaling efficiency and balance.  Doing rollers can help you maximize your power output on the road, making you even faster!  They require more concentration which can be tough but also feels like time passes by a bit faster.  *Off the saddle and high intensity efforts can be a little tricky but some trainers do offer resistance and rocking motion mechanism to allow for better “sprints”.

Rollers are a great tool to make sure you are using your power in the best way possible.

Conclusion

Rollers and trainers go well together.  IF you can get both, it’s the way to go.  Increase power with the trainer, increase efficiency with the rollers… combine them both and WIN!

Smart Trainers (direct drive)
CycleOps Hammer
KICKR

Smart Trainers
CycleOps Magnus
KICKR Snap

Fluid Trainer
CycleOps Fluid 2

Magnetic Trainer
CycleOps Mag+

Rollers
Tacx Galaxia
Cycleops AL Rollers with Resistance

Cold Weather Riding: Tips to Stay Warm on the Bike

Cold, winter weather is finally here. If you've been taking some time off or haven't had to endure cold-weather riding in awhile, you may not be fully prepared for the frigid onslaught.
So, what do you need to do to continue riding as it gets colder? For one, learn to dress for warmth on the bike. Although it'll mean making an investment in winter clothing, it doesn't have to break the bank. Try these tips and you'll ride warm and strong all winter long.

The Core

First, consider the rule of layering. This is a technique of wearing varying weights of clothing designed to wick, trap, hold and block. The overall purpose of layering is to trap insulating air between layers of clothing and subsequently hold heat in.

Wear a lightweight, high-performance, polyester-based wicking fabric next to the skin. Several manufacturers produce excellent high-quality, high-performance fabrics that are designed for cyclists. This type of garment will wick moisture away from the skin, keeping your skin and clothing dry to avoid heat loss through evaporation.
Next, wear something with thermal capabilities (polyester is excellent here as well) that retains warmth while allowing a slow "breathing" process of the fabric. Modern synthetic fabrics like polyester breathe and will help you stay warmer longer.

The outer garment will serve two purposes: Hold warmth in, while blocking the cold air and wind. The outer garment should serve as thermal barrier as well as a wind block, since cycling through cold air increases the wind chill factor. Fabrics like nylon serve this purpose well. Natural fabrics like wool and cotton get wet and stay wet, so don't wear your cotton T-shirt next to your skin thinking it will act as the primary wicking garment.
Also, if you're riding without a windbreaker and find that you need one, insert sections of a newspaper inside your cycling jersey. Insert it in the front to block on-coming cold air, and in the back to conserve core body heat and act as an insulator. You'll see amateurs and pros alike using this technique on long, cold descents.

 

 

The Head

About 30 percent of the body's heat is lost through the head. A tremendous supply of blood circulates through this area, so if you keep your head warm, your body will stay warm. Depending on the severity of the cold, differing levels of head gear can be used. Ear bands or ear warmers are a good beginning. A scull cap of synthetic fabric is a good lightweight remedy.

Remember your short billed cycling cap? It's not just for staying warm. The bill can be invaluable to protect against both sun and rain. Flip the bill up out of the way when you don't need it, or just turn the cap backwards to protect your neck.

In very cold weather, use a heavy-duty winter cycling cap that has both a bill AND ear flaps. Worn under a helmet, the helmet strap holds the ear flaps down, keeping the head nice and warm.
In extreme conditions, use a balaclava (or full hood) which covers the head, face and neck and has a small opening for the eyes and nose. Just don't walk into a bank with this on!

And don't forget the eyes. Traveling through cold air causes your eyes to tear, making it extremely difficult to see. Choose a good pair of cycling glasses that curve around the face and protect eyes from wind and other elements, without fogging up. Good eyewear, like all good cycling gear, is a good investment.
Respiration is another way to lose body heat, so if you're not wearing a balaclava, fold a bandana into a triangle and tie it to fit over your nose and mouth—just like the robbers in the old Westerns. This can make the difference between a comfortable ride and a miserable one. Just remember, don't go into a bank like this.

 

The Hands

I recommend cycling gloves for a couple of reasons. Most cycling gloves are cushioned on the palms, providing proper circulation in the various hand positions on your handlebars. Gloves also protect your hands from road rash if you fall. In the winter months, full fingered gloves are a good idea or cycling mittens for more extreme conditions.

The Feet

Since the feet are pedaling circles and churning through the cold air more than the rest of your body, they need to be protected from the cold. Like the head, body heat is lost to a large degree through the feet. For cold-weather riding, use a heavier thermal cycling sock that wicks moisture and retains heat; choose socks made from synthetic fabrics.

Cycling booties slipped over your shoes are great in cold weather. The booties are designed to accommodate your pedal cleats, and insulate your foot and ankle as well. For days that aren't cold enough for booties, wear toe covers. Toe covers accomplish the same thing that a windbreaker does for your chest: they keep the cold air from penetrating your foot.

If you're on a ride without booties or covers and your feet get cold, get plastic bags from a convenience or grocery store and slip them over your feet (inside your shoes). While you're at it, you might as well ask for a hot cup of coffee—the hot coffee will help heat up your core from the inside.

The Legs

Another rule of thumb is to keep knees covered anytime the weather is below 50 degrees. This helps keep them warm and protected from the cold air, thus keeping them properly lubricated and functioning. For semi-cold weather, short cycling tights are a good option; they come down just below the knee without covering the entire leg.

Cycling leg warmers are also very convenient as they are easy to zip on and off quickly as needed. For colder weather, full cycling tights range from lightweight to heavy and waterproof, or you can find insulated cycling pants.

The Arms

Like cycling tights and pants, arm warmers can be used to keep arms warm in semi-cold conditions. Arm warmers can be quite useful for days that start out cold and warm up as the sun comes out. As the weather warms, the arm warmers can be rolled down or taken off and stored in your jersey pocket. Again, there are varying degrees of thickness and insulation of arm warmers.

On winter days that don't warm up, wear a long-sleeved jersey (either insulated or not depending on the cold) for your middle garment as described above.

Basic Apparel

Now that we've gone over the cold-weather apparel to protect the body, don't forget the basics: A proper helmet, good cycling shorts with chamois and proper cycling shoes.
Now, adequately armed with what it takes to stay warm in the cold, you're ready to hit the road year round. You'll love it and your fair-weather cycling buddies will be envious. So just get out there and ride. Don't let a cold day keep you inside, just prepare for the cold properly.

Legendary Service Since 1987

About Us

We are a short drive from downtown Atlanta and carry the largest selection of bikes around. On any given day we have over 800 pre-built bicycles in stock and ready to roll out the door.  Come visit us and see why we are known for our price, selection, and legendary service.

670 Houze Way, Roswell, GA 30076

770-642-4057

Email Subscription



Send us your email and we will keep you up to date on the latest and greatest from Roswell Bicycles.  This includes discounts on your favorite cycling stuff, local events, group rides and training classes from our Service Department.

Name:*
E-mail:*
Word Verification:

* Required Field