At this rate will they make it to 70?
While looking for info on E bikes I found dozens Facebook pages and social media pages that revolve around Boomers on Ebikes. It’s sounds great, right? That’s until you really start to read the posts. Many aren’t talking about great trail rides, vacations, accessories or even they’re grandchildren. They’re talking about how they fell off their bike. What? It’s not just conversation about falling. They’re posting the pictures of their injuries. Why? Why would anyone want to see your cuts or hear about your trip to the emergency room ? What’s amazingly sad is that the posts continue. Look at my fall. It’s like a badge of courage to fall.
Why do people find the need to tell the world that they are clumsy and not as smart as they’re grandkids.
Sure, I fell off my bike when I was 4-5-6 etc… usually doing unsafe, fast maneuvers, cornering to fast, or riding a bike that’s to big and too heavy for me. You ask why it was too big for me, because money was tight, and Dad said, “I’ll grow into”.
But after riding a few years it became silly and just crazy to tell the world, I fell off my bike. We just shedded a few tears and shrugged it off. The most any of us would say was, watch out for that bush, or look out for the pothole. But there was always that one kid who said, “wow 3 more inches and I would been able to clear that fire hydrant”, as his parents brought him home from the hospital with a broken arm. There went his summer.
Ages ago as a kid, when I fell off my bike, I just went home and tended to my scrapes quietly. Mostly to avoid the embarrassment amongst my peers, or to avoid the, “I told you not to do that. You should know better by now” comments from my parents. Followed by the, “You need to take better care of your stuff. That bike was a lot of money.”
Even today, at age 64, if I fell off my bike I’d be embarrassed. I’d tend to my wounds as quietly as possible with an ice pack probably for days. Another saying from Dad was get up you just broke your pride. But I’m 64 and now my adult son and daughter would probably say, ‘what the hell mom, you yelled at us for that!”. So true to!
Times have changed and I’m older, and hopefully wiser. I don’t need the sympathy or empathy when I fail. But I do need to know my limits. I also know, I don’t react or heal as fast as I use too, so I need to be careful. I do know, I certainly would not post pictures of my injuries on the internet with a story explaining my stupidity or carelessness.
Ebikes are not the little Huffy or Sting Ray you got as a child for Christmas. Ebikes are more of a mobility device. They powerful and heavy. They are machines, more than bikes. Boomers need to respect the machine, it’s power and it’s weight.
People who once were not capable of biking, now can and that’s great. But like any other form of rehabilitation it takes practice and guidance. It needs to be fitted and adjusted. Much like a wheelchair needs to be fitted to its user.
Buying a bike off the internet then having to put it together in your garage is not a good idea. Would you put a Vespa together in your garage then go out and ride. Of course not, and that’s because you recognize the Vespa as a street machine. Ebikes are a machines too
We all need to sit, touch, and yes even ride a few bikes in order to find the bike that fits our needs, size and ability. Renting different bikes is a great way to find out what type and size bike a person wants and should have. There’s a huge difference between regular 30lb bike, a 45lb ebike and a 55lb ebike, (some are even heavier) especially if you only weigh 120pounds. Now, add accessories and that bike is 1/2 your weight. Imagine trying to walk and maneuver your body over trails and curbs if you were to instantly gain 55 extra pounds. You be slower, shaky, probably trip and maybe fall. But if you take it slow, join a workout group and follow a program you’d build up stamina, balance and strength without the injuries. So get fitted for your bike. After all it’s a big expense. Take a bike class and join a seniors club or group.
Many ebikes today have more power than the small older Vespas of the past. Honestly no one needs a 750w motor on a 60lb bike to enjoy a trail. That’s more power and weight on a bike than most people can handle.
Now, if your injury and fall have to do with cars, bike lanes, and traffic that’s totally different.
Take that story to the local newspaper, the city council, and use your injuries to change the world to make it safer for everyone to bike.
There needs to be more chatter about how to fit a bike, bike accessories, staying safe and safety, than about accidents.
Stay Safe and Happy Biking