Information on Tandem Bicycles

Information on Tandem Bicycles
A tandem bike is bicycle ridden by two people at once. Sometimes called a "twin bike" or the more colloquial "bicycle built for two," tandems are arranged with one rider in front of the other so both can provide pedaling power.

History

Tandems have been around since the early 19th century. The first tandems were mainly custom-made racing machines, but thanks to modern manufacturing techniques, tandems can be made relatively cheaply and in a variety of styles.

Types

There are a large variety of tandems available, including road, mountain and cruiser styles. Road and mountain tandems range from full-featured race machines to long-distance bikes, and cruiser tandems are stylish and practical for everyday use.

Features

A tandem bike can generate double the power of a conventional bike thanks to the two riders. Tandems are equipped with special components such as durable wheels and powerful brakes, which are especially important for high-performance styles. Mountain and road tandems usually have multispeed gearing, while cruiser tandems can be multispeed or single-speed.

Riders

Each rider has a specific title and specific duties. The "captain," or front rider, must steer, brake, shift gears and generally control the bicycle. The rear rider, otherwise known as the "stoker," is the main source of power.

Technique

Riding a tandem safely and efficiently takes practice. The riders must be in constant communication and must work together as a team. The captain must always let the stoker know what is happening (turns, stops, bumps, etc.), and the stoker must also give the captain input into how the ride is going.

Benefits

Tandems are a great way for cycling enthusiasts to encourage beginners to take up the sport. They are also ideal for friends or couples who enjoy cycling together. Finally, tandems are useful in helping reluctant riders enjoy the sport of cycling.

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