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Top 5 Tips to Organize Your Weekly Club Rides

February 15, 2017 2 Comments

Top 5 Tips to Organize Your Weekly Club Rides

"...we're afforded the means to help put the ride together effectively with the tools we have today more than ever."

by David Newcomer / Customer Service Manager

Getting together with your team and taking the time to ride is one of the most beautiful parts of our sport. The lifelong friendships, shared laughs, and connections made on the bike are among my favorite experiences. Period.

In a world of social media, we’re unique in our tangible experiences – and not to knock SnapFace too much – we’re afforded the means to help put the ride together effectively with the tools we have today more than ever. Still, there are some basics that can help make your group ride a successful one and that’s what we want to share with you today.

  1. Plan in advance – A standing ride makes sense, but if your team doesn’t have one, make sure you give a week’s notice or so to make sure people can plan to attend.
  2. Make rides Inclusive, not Exclusive – Invite everyone from the team and others you know who ride! This is a great time to make new connections and everyone has something to offer. Taking the time to welcome new members or people who may not be as familiar with this beautiful sport will help build a strong team that grows.
  3. Start and end at a convenient place and time – Coffee or beer sponsor? No brainer, right? And if someone needs to drop off, they still know where to go.
  4. Be safe. Plan safe routes and ride responsibly – As ambassadors of the sport (and your team and sponsors), it’s imperative that we set a good example. Group rides can be challenging for motorists to understand, so stick to no more than two-abreast, obey traffic signals and be courteous.
  5. Ride speed is dictated by the slowest rider, not fastest – It’s a group ride, after all. Take it easy and enjoy the time with your team. Maybe set a couple designated sprints, but re-group afterward. Most of us ride solo for the majority of our miles. If you’ve got a big group, consider splitting based on pace and ability, but otherwise, sit in and enjoy the ride.

Group rides can be one of the best experiences a rider has. When so much of our time is spent training alone, the opportunity to ride with friends can breathe new life into the activity. Conversely, if miss-managed, it can also be an unpleasant – even isolating or discouraging activity. Keep safety and inclusion forefront in your mind and it’s hard to go wrong.

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About the Author

David, Customer Service ManagerA lifelong commuter and amateur racer in road, CX and MTB, David Newcomer has experience with just about every aspect of our sport. A former race director of the Bob Cook Memorial Mt. Evans Hill Climb, and Executive Director of one of the largest cycling clubs in Colorado, he brings a wide range of experience to share with others. David is the Customer Service Manager at Pactimo and host of our podcast "On the Road with Pactimo." You can reach him directly at dnewcomer@pactimo.com

 



2 Responses

David
David

February 27, 2017

Thanks, Mark! Appreciate the feedback and really enjoy hearing about others working to expand our sport. Keep up the good work!

Mark Burke
Mark Burke

February 25, 2017

Great advice…Clubs can be intimidating for many. I’m the Ride Director for the Williamsport Bicycle Club (USA-PA). Inclusive Ride Planning and Management is key for our club and from my perspective, to the growth of cycling overall in the US, where cycling isn’t mainstream. Your 5 points are spot on. I like to talk about #5 because pace is often what creates the most tension in club rides. I’m in the process of developing our new ride leader guide. I’m crafting a few guiding principles that include helping others realize that they will both slower and faster than others. Tension creeps into groups when we forget that. Slower riders will feel left out if they are constantly dropped, and faster riders will feel unchallenged. Ride leaders play a key role in managing each participant’s enjoyment. So, I haven’t added much to the post, just an “I agree.” Thanks for posting.

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