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It's always important to carry out some pre-ride checks before hitting the road or trail. Not only will it ensure that you have a smoother and safer ride, but it'll also give you peace of mind knowing that your bike is in good working order.

Don’t worry if you’re new to cycling – carrying out pre-ride checks is simple and easy to do. We’ll walk you through some of the most important things to check before you set off on your next ride. So grab your bike and let’s get started!

Pre-ride checklist

The "M-Check" for your bike

The “M-Check” is 11 steps to carry out a simple bike check. It covers essential components such as the brakes, tyres, wheels, chain, and saddle to ensure that a bike is safe to ride. This article from Sustrans UK provides clear instructions on how to carry out each check and includes helpful images to help along the way

Dress to impress (and stay comfortable)

Whether it’s hot and sunny, cold and wet, or anything in between, the right clothing can make all the difference to our comfort and safety on the bike. But what should you wear for different weather conditions? Take a look at the links below to make sure you are ready no matter the weather!

Stay Protected

We advise you should wear a helmet anytime you go for a ride. When fitting your helmet, tt should be level, with a gap of about an inch or two fingers between the eyebrow and the helmet. Make sure that all the straps and adjustments are firm but not too tight.

Fuel up and stay hydrated

Your body is like a well-oiled machine, and just like any machine, it needs the right fuel and hydration to perform at its best. When it comes to cycling, packing appropriate snacks such as fruits and plenty of water is essential for maintaining your energy levels and staying hydrated throughout your ride.

Ride with peace of mind

Whether you’re commuting to work, running errands, or just going for a leisurely ride, it’s crucial to have a lock and lights with you at all times. Locks are essential for preventing theft, while lights help you see and be seen in low-light conditions. So, before you set off on your next ride, make sure you’ve got these essential items with you, so you can ride with peace of mind.

Don't get lost

When planning your next ride, one of the most important things you can do is map out your route. There are plenty of apps and websites available that can help you find routes of various types and distances, whether you’re commuting to work or hitting the trails for a more adventurous ride.

Short or long. Local or district-wide. Our Where to Ride section has all the information you need to plan your next route

and remember, if you’re cycling alone, it’s always a good idea to let someone know where you’re going and when you expect to return.

Be responsible

While cycling is a fantastic way to stay active and explore the world around you, it’s important to remember that it also comes with responsibilities. As a cyclist, you need to be aware of your surroundings, follow the rules of the road, and be familiar with the most up-to-date guidance on cycling safely. This includes knowing the appropriate hand signals, understanding how to navigate roundabouts and junctions, and being aware of any local laws or regulations that apply to cyclists. By staying informed and aware, you can help ensure your safety and the safety of those around you while cycling. Take a few minutes to refresh your knowledge of cycling responsibilities and guidelines using the links below