Wether you are a new rider or an experienced cyclist, it’s good to keep in mind a few basic rules of the road for your safety and some cycling etiquette.

The first thing we are going to talk about is safety.
There are a couple of tips you can keep in mind to be safe out on the roads.

It’s important to note that in all fifty states cyclists have the same right to the road as drivers do. Which also means they have the same responsibilities and must obey all traffic laws. Like never cross the double yellow line in the center of the road, and be sure to stop at all stop signs.
Always ride on the right hand side of the road, and if there is a bike lane available, take advantage of it.

Be sure to signal your intentions using hand signals.

Signal a Left Turn

About fifty yards before the turn take your left hand off the handle bars and extend it to the left, perpendicular to your body.
Hold your hand open and point it in the direction that you are turning, keeping your arm extended.
Don’t assume all cars have seen your signal. Always glance backwards quickly before you initiate your turn and check for traffic.

Signal a Right Turn

About twenty five yards before you turn right, raise your left hand with your elbow bent 90 degrees; your hand pointing skyward and your left arm forming an L. Check for traffic before entering the intersection to turn.
It’s also acceptable to extend your right arm perpendicular to your body to signal a right turn.

Signal a Stop

About fifty yards before you come to a stop, raise your left elbow until it’s perpendicular to your body. Point your fingers down to the pavement with the palm facing the traffic behind you, so your arm forms a reversed 7. Hold this position until you come to a stop.

Bike Signals

Never ride on the sidewalk. Not only is it illegal but cars don’t expect to encounter cyclists coming from the sidewalk.
You want to be as visible as possible to traffic. So be sure to wear light color clothing and if you are riding at night, use lights and reflectors.
If possible make eye contact with drivers, specially in intersections. This will acknowledge your presence and avoid an accident.

You also need to watch out for parked cars. Often a driver may open the door or pull out without looking back to see if there is a cyclist. It’s up to you to make sure that you keep a safe distance from those cars.

When riding with others you want to ride single file, specially on busy roads. Riding side by side is usually permited as long as you are not impeding traffic.

It’s really important to remember these basic rules we just went over to make your ride as safe and enjoyable as possible.

As always, have a great ride!