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An etiquette guide for cyclists who care

Have you ever wondered how a noble cyclist is distinguished from the riff raff? Ever felt like your etiquette could do with some brushing up?

If so, this short video guide is for you. Learn a standard of behaviour that’ll set you apart in the group, just out on the bike, or off it too, with seven simple steps.

1.Don’t ignore a fellow cyclist

A cheery wave and a smile please, says the Global Cycling Network.

2. Point out potholes

Don’t leave your mates at the back of the group to find their wheels mangled; just point it out.

3. Share your food

If someone’s looking a bit peaky, offer them some of your stash. If it’s a gel they’re not familiar with, you might want to check they’re aware of rule #7.

4. Help out with repairs

Don’t ride on by when someone’s looking pathetic at the roadside. You might need that karma to come on round one day.

5. Offer a helping shove to the arse on a climb

Keep the group together by giving someone a shove up a long climb.

6. Carry cash

Don’t be that dude at the coffee shop. Bring your own cash.

7. No farting

...Or at least head to the back of the pack.

 

 

Now here at road.cc we’re not generally a fan of ‘rules’ when it comes to cycling. We’re more of the opinion that if you like to ride, go and do it your way.

But, if you’re after a little additional guidance, here’s How Not To Be  A Knob To Female Cyclists.

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.

22 comments

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cyclingdave70 [33 posts] 3 years ago
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Are you daring to suggest other rules !?

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bikecellar [268 posts] 3 years ago
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Re rule 7, a steersman on a tandem should always give fair warning to the stoker of impending "event" so that their face can be averted,.  1

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Colin Peyresourde [1819 posts] 3 years ago
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Rule no 5 seems to have changed.....

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chrisp1973 [55 posts] 3 years ago
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There's only one set of rules.

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madonepro [36 posts] 3 years ago
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chrisp1973 wrote:

There's only one set of rules.

Only one rule 'ride your bike'!

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Northernbike [229 posts] 3 years ago
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most of this kind of etiquette stuff is nonsense but I think the principle of checking a rider you pass on the roadside is OK is a certainly one to live by still as even if it's something easy to fix it's a morale boost to know someone's looking out for you

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simon F [1003 posts] 3 years ago
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I've surprised a few by stopping to help as I drove by, both in car and motorbike. Worth it for the look of pleased amazement alone.

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WolfieSmith [1381 posts] 3 years ago
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Someone who shall remain nameless, ( ok it was 'Clarkson'. So named as he's always in top gear..) guffed in my face on a club run recently. I could taste it.  31

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Trull [81 posts] 3 years ago
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It was nice yesterday to get heartfelt thanks from two ladies after I'd calmly asked if their horses were OK with me approaching slowly up the singlelane. Admittedly as this was up a 10% slope I didn't really need to dab the brakes much…

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OldRidgeback [2798 posts] 3 years ago
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8. Smile and say, "Good day," when you encounter walkers on off road tracks

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Big Softy [26 posts] 3 years ago
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Give a friendly wave to motorists that actually wait for safe space to overtake you.

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andyp [1501 posts] 3 years ago
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If someone doesn't obey the first of these rules, don't throw a hissy fit and start moaning on internet forae about 'ignorant roadies'.

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arfa [851 posts] 3 years ago
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It's courtesy innit ? cultivate the environment you want and it follows. As said above, stopping to help people when you're in a car often surprises (but it shouldn't really).

I always call out & ask horse riders if it's ok to pass and their surprise sometimes worries me about the behaviour of others.

Another one I find if driving through the surrey hills is to make a point of slowing down, indicating and overtaking cyclists I invariably see those behind me in my rear view mirror following suit.

On the whole I find the great majority of cyclists courteous and interested in those who partake of the same hobby as themselves.

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Sudor [189 posts] 3 years ago
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For a laugh see the Velominati "the Rules" here:- http://www.velominati.com/the-rules/

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userfriendly [616 posts] 3 years ago
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That's a bit harsh.  22

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parksey [342 posts] 3 years ago
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OldRidgeback wrote:

8. Smile and say, "Good day," when you encounter walkers on off road tracks

Off road tracks? What on earth are you doing off road?!  3

Big Softy wrote:

Give a friendly wave to motorists that actually wait for safe space to overtake you.

Second that, generally acknowledging the courtesy offered by other road users is a good thing. Another one of mine is a nod/wave to oncoming drivers who wait for you to pass through narrow gaps first.

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hampstead_bandit [614 posts] 3 years ago
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4. Help out with repairs

here's one tip I could offer to riders that work in bike shops (specifically if like me you work as a mechanic)

If I see a rider with a mechanical, I'll always stop and assist. Nothing like having a professional mechanic help you out!

Afterwards, I'll give them a business card for our shop (I always carry 1 or 2 with my money) and invite them to come and see us if they need any help in the future  3

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A V Lowe [613 posts] 3 years ago
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Take care if literally applying Rule 5 without either asking or considering the placing on of the hand. It can be taken the wrong way if no warning is given, or enquiry made. That said I was grateful to the pack from Coatbridge who let me draft them for a spell on the uphill stretch on the A89 the other day, after already impressing them with an earlier hill climb on the 1-speed Brompton, sadly a bit under geared to stretch out as they upped the pace on the flatter sections.

I became subtly aware of a gentle force just below my left shoulder, looking a bit out of place on a Brompton and wearing a jacket & trousers, amid the group tops and road bikes, as I began to slip back on one of the hills.

Thanks guys much appreciated.

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captain_slog [408 posts] 3 years ago
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Country Life recently ran an article on what constitutes a gentleman. One of their stipulations is that a gentleman never wears Lycra.

They're seeking nominations for their gentleman of the year award, so I've put forward Sir Bradley of Wiggins. My reasoning is that, Lycra notwithstanding, anyone dubbed 'le gentleman' by the French must be doing their bit to export the best of the British character to the world.

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northstar [1107 posts] 3 years ago
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Tragic.... [/bite]

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davebinks [153 posts] 3 years ago
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"5. Offer a helping shove to the arse on a climb
Keep the group together by giving someone a shove up a long climb."

The last time I did that (30yrs ago?) I got a mouthful of foul abuse.
I have never done it since, at least, not without specifically asking if they wanted a push.

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stealth [254 posts] 3 years ago
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What constitutes a gentleman...
Somebody once suggested to me that the difference between a woman & a lady could be determined by whether they rode side saddle or not...
A gentleman wouldn't make the judgement.