Although advances have been made in bicycling safety, accidents still happen. Fortunately, driver awareness is steadily increasing and safety gear is constantly being improved, making cyclists more visible to drivers and providing protection in case of collision. From lights and reflectors to helmets and gloves, safety gear is making a safe ride possible for more and more cyclists.
A helmet is the most important piece of protective gear for a cyclist. A properly fitted helmet is essential for keeping the rider safe from head injuries in case of a fall or collision. A helmet's effectiveness depends greatly on how well it fits, so find a bike shop and have an attendant help you find the right fit.
Check out Giro's Havok bike helmet.
Reflective clothing and gear makes the rider more visible to motorists and helps prevent collisions. Many articles of clothing designed for cyclists feature reflective material to catch a motorist's eye.
Pearl Izumi's Zephyrr jacket is a great example of reflective cycling apparel.
When riding in low-light situations, head and tail lights are important not only to illuminate the rider's path, but to make the rider visible to traffic coming up from behind--a blinking red light on the back of a bicycle is a great way to get a driver's attention.
Check out Princeton Tec's Yukon HL bike light.
Many collisions occur as a result of a cyclist drifting or turning in front of a vehicle. A helmet- or handlebar-mounted side view mirror is helpful in allowing the rider to see if the coast is clear without turning his head.
Cycleaware has some good choices for helmet-mounted mirrors.
Article Written By Billy Brown
Billy Brown is an outdoor sports writer living in Northern California.
An avid rock climber and trail runner, he's been writing about outdoor activities, fitness and gear since 2005. He regularly contributes to "The Record Searchlight," uncooped.com, and Trails.com, as well as other print and online publications. Brown holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Simpson University and is a NASM-certified personal trainer.