If social distancing has you looking for a family-fun activity or wishing you were back in spin class, it might be time to hop back on a bike of your own. We spoke with Anne Mader, co-owner of The Bike Lane, to get her tips about enjoying the fresh air, finding the perfect bike and getting repairs in a world of contactless interactions.
How has the local interest in biking increased since the pandemic began?
The first week after school got out, we could not keep kids bikes in stock. This makes us really excited for the future since we know that once you get a kid on a bike, they will continue riding. And we have definitely seen more people purchasing bikes and bike accessories in the store and online. We have also seen a lot of new riders who are either riding recreationally or commuting. We think once things get back to normal, whenever that is, new riders will continue to enjoy their bikes and we will continue to see growth in cycling.
If you were to inspire someone to get back into biking now, what would you want them to know?
There is no better way to enjoy fresh air and de-stress than riding a bike. It is a great escape for yourself or for the whole family. We are so lucky to have hundreds of miles of paved and unpaved trails in our area. We also have numerous miles of bike lanes and gravel roads. There is so much to explore by bike and everyone should take advantage of it.
For those who want to buy a new bike, what advice would you give them?
Before starting to shop for a new bike, it’s good to think of the following: Do you want to ride on trails, gravel or pavement? How many miles will you want to ride? Do you want a bike for commuting, or one for recreational riding? And what is your price point? This will all help determine the style of bike you want. Once you have a good idea about how you want to use your bike, it is best to call or visit your local bike shop.
Maders’ 3 Summer Biking Tips
• “Getting the right-size bike is the most important aspect of purchasing a bike, so you want to make sure you test ride it before purchasing it, or if you purchase it online through a bike shop, make sure to have them size you and get the proper seat height when you pick it up or have it delivered.”
• “We have put in place numerous precautions to protect our employees and customers including curbside pickup and drop off, limiting the number of customers in the shop at one time, and all of the bikes coming into and out of the store are getting sanitized.”
• “We are servicing bikes but we are only doing minor repairs. We want to keep everyone riding during this time, so we are only doing minor repairs such as flats, minor tune-ups and adjustments, so we can service as many customers as possible. Once we get back to normal operating hours, we will begin doing more major repairs and overhauls.”
This post originally appeared in our June/July 2020 print issue. For more on exercise and fitness, subscribe to our weekly Health newsletter.