What do people love most about riding a bike? Why do they start riding more? We asked a few Cycling Brisbane members for their answers.
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I started riding a bike for the family time. We love getting into the outdoors, and fitness is an added bonus. It feels great to get outside, and be able to stop and notice the wildlife and world around us. Riding through the heart of the trees, I can hear the birds, feel the wind on my face, and sometimes see the beautiful wildlife like koalas and snakes.
We are very lucky to have easily accessible bike paths through trees and green areas. Once we get going, we like to explore new paths too, stopping off at playgrounds and exercise equipment. This is one big advantage we find in riding over walking. You can’t explore as far and as quickly on foot.
My advice to someone who wants to start riding is simply to get out there! Sometimes it may feel like an effort to get up and get out, but within minutes your wellbeing and connections with those you’re riding with, will thank you for it.
Being a one-car family that is busy with five children, I wanted to find an easier and more convenient way to get to work. I hadn’t used a bike in more than 15 years so when I started, I could barely ride around the block without wobbling or crashing. My eight-year old daughter had to tell me how to use gears as I had never been riding with them before! At most, my riding commute takes 30 minutes. Last week when my husband drove me to work, it took us 45 minutes. By riding to work, I get to spend more time with my children.
I love the freedom that the bikeway gives me. I also love the environment I ride through, past the Kangaroo Point Cliffs and along the river. I enjoy the ride and the time between finishing work and getting home. My family and I also ride to school and around our local area. On the weekend or during the school holidays, we enjoy family rides to South Bank now that our youngest child is five years old and has the ability to make it there.
I ride to work from Tarragindi to Gregory Terrace every day via the bikeways, including along South Bank, which is shady and very pretty, through Roma Street Parkland and Victoria Park. Riding to work every day means there is one less car on the road, so less pollution and less congestion. It is cheaper than driving too.
For me, riding is a great way to keep fit and I get to see the best parts of Brisbane by bike: the river paths, the trails near the creeks and the parklands. I like being part of the community of people who ride bikes. It is inspirational to see so many people embracing two wheels.
When I started a sit-down office job after graduating university, I was restless and gaining weight. My brother bought his first adult bike around that time and it reminded me how much I loved bike riding as a child. At first, it was hard. I only had one ride a day in me, relying on the train for the other direction but I stuck with it because even the hottest, sweatiest rides were making me smile. I now ride my cargo bike to the dog park and to do my weekly food shopping or even taxi my son and partner across to South Bank!
I also make great use of the TransLink app to help me walk, bus, train or CityCat to where I need to go. The car is there for those trips I simply can’t accomplish on public transport.
I was driving our family’s second car five kilometres to the train station each day to get to work in the city. I thought I’d try riding the bike, which was gathering dust in the garage, to the station instead. It was actually quicker than driving in peak time. After a few weeks, I upgraded my bike and tried riding the full 15 kilometres to the city from the western suburbs. I never looked back after that. We sold our second car and saved our family thousands a year in petrol, registration, insurance, servicing and public transport fares.
I keep riding mostly because it’s fun. I’m not out there to set any speed records but I enjoy the ride, and there’s nothing quite like the sight of the Brisbane River from the Bicentennial Bikeway on a still morning. The only thing better is when a friend catches up and you can have a chat on your way to work. You don’t get that in a car!