Commute by trike
Blow away that jaded office feeling – commuting by trike freshens the spirits and invigorates the body after a day slumped behind a desk. Here are some pointers to get you started.
Get your trike ready - As standard most trikes are commute-ready, but a few well-chosen accessories will make all the difference:
- Tyres should have a good amount of tread, thick sidewalls and great puncture resistance.
- Mudguards will not only keep you and your clothing clean, they’ll also keep your trike cleaner too, which will help avoid mechanical problems in the long run.
- You’ll need some way of carrying your office kit to and fro, and trikes are ideal for taking the strain. Invest in a purpose-designed rack paired with panniers, or bags that sling behind the seat.
- As the evenings draw in it becomes increasingly important to illuminate yourself and let other road users know you are there. Pop up a flag, don bright clothing and ride your trike like it’s a Christmas tree!
- Be prepared with the tools, spares and knowledge to deal with roadside repairs. If this really isn’t your thing, take a phone and taxi money – fold your poorly trike, pop it in the boot and enjoy the experience of being chauffeured!
Prep the office – A little preparation in the office goes a long way
- Take a clean-up kit to store at work – shampoo and soap if you’re lucky enough to have showers at work, antibacterial body wipes if you don’t.
- Don’t subject your colleagues to stinky cycling clothes. Synthetic fabrics can be rinsed, wrung and hung to dry. Otherwise a quick spray of Febreze or similar will ward off nasty pongs.
- Have a set of clothes, spare shoes, underwear and other essentials in the office. There’s nothing worse than getting halfway through your journey when you realise you forgot something essential
- Make sure there’s somewhere to keep your trike safe. Utilise that folding frame!
Plan your route
- Plan your route carefully to avoid heavy traffic and daunting hills. Use online tools like Google Maps and MapMyRide to check for cycle paths, gradients and traffic density.
- Once you’ve found a route that suits you, stick to it. At first other road users will find your recumbent a novelty, but pretty soon they’ll start looking out for you.
- If you live a long way from the office, or want to build up your stamina, consider driving half way and cycling the remainder.
- Did I mention visibility already?
- You wouldn’t swerve a car all over the road, around parked vehicles or against the traffic, so don’t do it on your trike! Pick a line and stick to it. Signal clearly giving plenty of notice when you want to turn. Keep steady and be predictable!
- Keep your wits about you, eyes peeled and ears open. Accidents most commonly occur at junctions, when other drivers haven’t seen you or have cut through a light.