Bike Shorts, April 19, 2021

26 Apr 2021 4:58 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Quote of the week

“The bicycle is just as good company as most husbands and when it gets old and shabby, a woman can dispose of it and get a new one without shocking the entire community.” Ann Strong, author

1. Welcome new member

Rob Coffin

2. Safety tip from Monna - signal and/or call out your intentions

It is imperative to communicate your intention to stop, change lanes, turn, and/or generally manoeuvre around traffic, other cyclists, pedestrians, obstacles, construction etc.

  • Use an open palm with spread fingers for maximum visibility (it is a signal NOT a point);
  • Straighten up on the bike – if you are too bent over, it may be difficult for others to actually see the signal
  • Shoulder check BEFORE signalling, while maintaining straight line riding;
  • Return your hands to your handlebars when crossing or turning at an intersection;

There are two methods to signal “right turning”. The decision of which to use is situational: Ask yourself “on what side of me, is the intended audience” (i.e. is there traffic merging from the right) and signal accordingly.

Equally imperative, when intending to pass another cyclist, first ensure it is safe to do so. Then, pass only on the left, and warn the other cyclist by clearly stating 'passing on your left'. Give them sufficient space to avoid a wobble from being startled.

3. Safety and education blog

Tires - Be Faster, Safer, and More Comfortable - Arguably the most important contact-point of your bike is “where the rubber meets the road”. The right tire at the right pressure makes a huge difference to your safety - your “grip” on the road - as well as to your comfort and efficiency. Tires may well be the most important component on your bike! In the latest Education and Safety Blog post, Bill dives into detail on tires, with a focus on tire width, tire pressure, and tire quality. Much of what we will learn goes against old "cycling common knowledge", so we'll also touch on cycling myths, and how they come about. Head over to for the article.

4. Diversions

Article: Active transport & health: Evidence from academia

Article: OVCATA launches Bike Bank so everyone can ride

Article: How green is cycling? Riding, walking, ebikes and driving ranked

Article: Ottawa-Gatineau cycling network as a surprising subway map

Article: Trading clunkers for electric bikes: France moves to offer financial incentive

Article: Voyage Québec: En selle pour l’été

Video: Vélo route de l'année 2020 - LE CYCLE (8:08)

Video: Dutch cycling infrastructure (1:00)

Article: Helping with Bikes has moved to 1455 Michael Street, Unit 3

The new warehouse space will double the impact in the community. For the Bikes team, it means more space while also consolidating the operations within the same building as Helping with Furniture. They are currently fundraising for the costs to set up the bike workshop in this new facility. If you're in a position to give, please visit their fundraising drive page

We believe that bikes can change lives. Each year, Helping with Bikes refurbishes over 200 donated bikes for families & individuals in need, including refugees, people relocating from shelters or leaving abusive situations, people struggling with mental illness or at risk of homelessness in Ottawa. Providing an affordable and reliable primary means of transportation removes a potential barrier to employment. It also helps families by providing children with access to play with their family, friends and neighbours and hours of safe, wholesome fun. This has the added bonus of diverting approximately three more metric tonnes of waste from carbon-intensive recycling and waste disposal streams per year!