Avoid Bike Crashes and Cycling Injuries
Crash Course for Cyclists
Make the Save
Keeping Your Head Down
Make the Save
Years from now, when people recount the 2011 Tour de France, they'll talk first about the intrigue over the final days that culminated in Cadel Evans's dramatic win. Storyline number two? The crashes. Especially during its first two weeks, the Tour was notable for the quantity of wrecks that took place.
While they predictably made SportsCenter, the crashes have a deeper resonance for anyone who loves to bike. Maxim Iglinsky clipping a spectator like a roadside trash can, various riders sliding on wet descents, and Juan Antonio Flecha and Johnny Hoogerland getting sideswiped by a car all speak to us because we fear those same scenarios--or have already lived through something similar. And we marvel when, somehow, many of those stand up with mere road rash and ride on.
"You always bounce back," says Craig Lewis, of the now-defunct HTC-Highroad team, who nearly died after he was hit by a car at the 2004 Tour de Georgia. "I've crashed many times. A lot of people would have stopped racing, but I'm glad I stuck with it. If you put those limits on, you miss so much in life."
We can't guarnantee you'll never fall, but we can offer some helpful advice. Here we present a primer on avoiding common scenarios and mistakes that can lead to falls. Remember these tips and practice a few key skills, and eventually they'll become hardwired for when you need them most.