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  • Writer's pictureThothathri Raman

Harnessing the wind

"The bicycle spokes calms down the rush in me. I glide along the green terrain at a steady speed feeling the wind on my face. This is the moment of my calmness and when I can smell the green grass and see the beautiful flora and fauna all around me. Yes I can feel, see and hear nature in all its glory around me because I am enjoying my bicycle ride. This is my way of contributing to a better tomorrow and not burning fossil fuel. People are aware of the consequences of using petrol and diesel vehicles but how many of us are taking action to switch to other modes of transport that doesn’t use fuel. Yes paddling our way to work is a great alternative if we want to save planet earth. It’s time to harness the wind and let the spokes of the bicycle bring out the child in us. So slow down, ponder that it’s time and pick up that bicycle and enjoy that ride!! " Monica Bose Raghavan, an education services professional says.

"There is something indescribable and magical about cycling which only cyclists will know. I am 57 years of age and love cycling long distances. But I am amused to see that many youngsters today do 200 to 300 km a day effortlessly" says D Tewari founder of an IT services company based in Delhi. He has participated in several long distance day trips to farthest distance of 100 km.

A group of cyclists from a local gurudwara that we met on our way to Sardhana town which houses the only Basilica near Delhi say that riding to near by villages and towns on the weekend is a great learning experience. And at Sardhana we met so many cyclists in pairs and groups who had undertaken the arduous journey from Delhi. The farther you go away from a big metropolis like Delhi the better is the feel of wind on your face, one of the cyclists said.

Cycles need not be upmarket, only will power matters is my own personal experience of having been keen cyclists for years. Those who want the wind on their face need to follow some thumb rules to make the whole experience of riding a memorable one every time you take out the cycle.

For starters don't target really long distances in the initial months as your riding needs to be perfected before you start experimenting with yourself.

Any cycle will do! Don't waste huge money on cycles and gears in the initial years of cycling. As you climb the distance ladder you will understand the need for lighter and more sturdy bikes which of course will cost a bomb.

There is no such thing as a cyclist with the bells and whistles complete with helmet, goggles, gloves, sportswear, special shows and the works. All it takes is simple cotton full sleeps and a sports pant. A helmet of course is a must which not only protects your head also helps you to get the right of way in any traffic as some how a helmet wearing cyclist is revered while riding the roads.

Why cycle and why not reach quickly by riding a bike or car? Of course it is best option but how about getting some health also while you ride to work, shopping, school or leisure? This is one reason I would strongly discourage e-bikes as I find these quite lame and kinda unfair to yourself and your health.

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