Cycling and COVID-19
Should I cycle during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak?
I’m often asked whether cycling should be permitted as a form of exercise during these unprecedented times. Well, I guess my answer is, it depends. Cycling is an excellent form of exercise and if done while observing social distancing guidelines then you should be ok.
However, there are risks, both to you and to others around you. Risks include:
- Having an accident
- No-one likes to think about having an accident but it is a risk we all accept when out on the road. If you do, you will not only put yourself in hospital and at risk of contracting the virus or other illness, but also divert healthcare resources at a time when they are at an absolute premium.
- Causing frustration to road users
- People on the road should be there on essential business only, often for the public good. Delaying ambulances, delivery vehicles, utility and other key services is to be avoided at this time.
So, my advice is: yes, go for a ride, but:
- Be considerate – other people, drivers, dog-walkers, cyclists, runners etc. are anxious and under stress so they may not be as accommodating as normal.
- Wherever possible, ride off road, on cycle tracks or trails (see image of me on my CX on a bridleway in the lake district.)
- Stay local and keep a form of communication with you at all times
- Keep the length of your ride within govt. guidelines. Yes, I know we all want to be Strava heroes but no-one, other than you, will be impressed that you broke all the rules – I’m not a rule-follower by nature but at this time we must all do our bit!
- Wear a helmet and carry a basic first aid kit.
- If possible – why not use an indoor bike (zwift, wattbike or Peloton?). It’s not the same as being outdoors but it does have the advantage of keeping you and everyone else safe and sound
Be smart – ride safe – stay healthy!