How to cycle in traffic


Some people feel intimidated cycling in traffic but our top ten tips will help you feel confident to undertake more journeys on the road by bike According to the National Standard in cycle training, which is backed by the Department for Transport, there are four core functions of rider behaviour when it comes to cycling confidently:observationcommunicationprioritypositionLet's look at what this might mean in practice.

1. Start with good road positioning

Make sure your road position is not too close to the kerbKeeping away from the gutter makes you more visible to drivers and helps you miss slippery drain covers, potholes and debris at the side of the road. Also, if someone does overtake you too closely, you have more space on your left to move into.You may need to ride further out from the kerb if you don’t want a driver to overtake you because it would be unsafe to do so. Some traffic-calming features built out from the kerb, or mid-road refuges for pedestrians, for example, don’t leave enough room for a car to pass a cyclist safely.Moving into the centre of the lane should mean that drivers stay behind you instead of trying to squeeze past. Some people call riding in the middle of the lane (that is, where motorists normally drive) ‘taking the lane’, or the ‘primary position’.

2. Keep an eye on what’s around you

Road awareness is an important skill to developThis means looking ahead for rough surfaces, drain covers, road humps, vehicles parked in the lane, potholes and puddles (which can hide potholes). Looking all around also helps you prepare for junctions, roundabouts, traffic lights and so on, and anticipate potential problems. This helps you avoid having to swerve, brake abruptly or make sudden manoeuvres that other road users don’t anticipate

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