Over 80% of your effort when you ride your bicycle is overcoming air resistance. If you are riding at 20 mph with no wind and then a 10 mph headwind appears your speed will drop to 16 mph, if your effort remains the same. On a windy day (20-30 mph), it will take about twice the effort to achieve the same results. However, there are some important tips to keep in mind when riding on a windy day.
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1. Enjoy it!! I know this is not what you were expecting to hear. However, since there is nothing you can do to stop the wind you might as well have a good attitude! You are STILL the most efficient vehicle on the road and plus you are awarded extra exercise to improve your hill climbing skills. Plus, the wind only blows in one direction, so eventually it will be your friend.
2. Lower your Body. It helps a great deal to lower your torso to make yourself more aerodynamic and slip under the wind.
3. Wear Tight Fitting Clothes. The last thing you want to be is a parachute… you want to “catch” as little wind as possible. This is the reason most biking clothing is tight fitting.
4. Find Roads That Have Protection from Wind. Some paths and roads have trees and buildings that sheilds some of the wind. This can be very helpful on a very windy day.
5. Pedal Downhill. On windy days, pedaling puts more traction on the rear wheel and prevents you from being blown around. So put your bike in a higher gear and slowly pedal when you are going downhill.
6. Use a Lower Gear. Put your bike in a lower (easier to pedal) gear. You will sacrifice some speed but will save some energy for later.
7. Draft. If you are riding with other cyclists and know how to draft, this is a great time to do so!!. Here is a good video on how to draft.
Ride. Be Safe. Have Fun.
Bicycle Injury Lawyer and Enthusiast.
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