ELECTRIC BIKE SAFETY TIPS FOR SENIORS

JULY 16, 2022

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Cycling is an activity enjoyed by people of every age group. It has something to offer to everyone. It offers thrill, speed, and flexibility to young people craving adrenaline boost. Middle-aged people like the feasibility and social benefits of a cycle, while seniors can reap the benefits of light exercise, an ebike can offer. In short, when you have a bike, the possibilities are limitless.

However, adhering to safety procedures while riding is the core of beneficial cycling activity. Recently, more and more people are moving from a sedentary lifestyle to a more mobility-oriented one. And ebikes are at the forefront of this revolutionary movement.

But, due to a lack of awareness and careless attitude, the injuries are rampant. You can avoid injuries with proper guidance and tips for riding an ebike. So, if you are looking for electric bike safety tips for seniors, stick to the article till the end. 

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Ebikes are a Great Option for Seniors


Old age comes with a fair amount of its difficulties. It needs proper care and promotion of healthy activities to live a graceful old age. It's not about physical exertion that makes a senior citizen independent and healthy, but moderation in exercise is the key.

It should not be too much to cause an injury or too little to lack any serious challenge. Ebikes are considered the best option for seniors due to their low-impact physical activity. The assisted paddling helps you adjust the intensity of your cycling activity.

Suppose you are recovering from an injury, suffering from a chronic illness like arthritis, or just looking for an activity to maintain your health. In that case, the ebike is the ultimate equipment you need. Cycling is the best possible solution to recover from a mobility-related issue.

However, paying full attention to your safety is vital to prevent further injury. Although this article is specifically designed to keep seniors' safety needs in mind, the tips provided in the article can apply to all cycling enthusiasts for a more fulfilling and safer riding routine.

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Health Benefits of Using Ebikes for Seniors


Traditional cycles need a certain level of physical health to ride, but ebikes are upgraded versions of regular cycles. It needs less power for riding, and assisted paddling makes it ideal for seniors.

Its benefits are numerous, ranging from mental to physical health. It uplifts mood and mental outlook and subsides ailments attributed to aging. Moreover, it provides opportunities to socialize with like-minded people. Let's have a deeper look at some of these benefits.


Mental Health

When you can move at your own will, it boosts your confidence and promotes self-reliance. It is the ultimate benefit of riding ebikes by seniors; they become self-reliant. Ebikes offer little resistance, and seniors can ride them for more extended periods.

A Scotland-based research team found that seniors with ebikes can cycle more than manual cyclists. It results in a high sense of independence. It also improves their mental well-being and reduces symptoms of old age depression.

Seniors who cycle regularly are less prone to depression; they feel more energetic and mentally well-balanced. Cycling, an outdoor activity, provides opportunities to experience nature at its doorstep, which has therapeutic effects.


Physical Health

Ebike works on the same principle of paddling as a traditional bike, but riding is not similar in both. Ebikes are equipped with motors and batteries to provide thrust and assistance in paddling, making them perfect for seniors.

It offers low-impact physical activity without putting too much pressure on the joints, especially the knee joint. Cycling is an aerobic exercise that involves many muscle groups in a coordinated manner. It improves blood flow, cardiovascular health, and coordination. Following are some of the known physical health benefits of ebikes for seniors.

   ●Balance and Coordination:

Another problem linked with old age is poor balance. Seniors face difficulty maintaining a good balance during regular walking and physical activities. Cycling is an activity that involves many muscle groups, like lower limb muscles for paddling and upper limb muscles for keeping the bike from falling. Core muscles also play essential parts in cycling.

When all these muscles work together, their coordination improves, ultimately improving the balance. You can start with stationary bikes for a while before shifting to an ebike. It will improve your balance so that you can avoid any untoward incidents.

   ●Strong Bones, Muscles, and Joints:

It is a perfect exercise to cause hypertrophy in lower limb muscles like hamstrings and quadriceps. Stronger lower limb muscles mean a stronger knee joint. It also helps strengthen bones, muscles, and joints without spending days in the gym. Cycling can subside chronic soreness of the body and keeps you healthy and fit. However, you must avoid hard paddling if recovering from a recent injury.

   ●Robust Immune System:

Our immune system is what keeps us healthy in case of an infection. T-cells produced by thyme are the soldiers that fight pathogens. However, as we grow, it starts declining, and the organ responsible for producing T-cells starts shrinking as much as fifteen percent of its original size by age sixty.

Many pieces of research link a robust immune system with daily physical activity. Seniors who add cycling to their daily routine are less prone to infectious diseases and have strong immunity. Cycling can boost the production of T-cells that are the basis of the immune system.

   ●Decreased Risk of Illness:

A recent study suggests that people who commute using a bike daily are less likely to fall ill. Cycling reduces cardiovascular disease risk and decreases CSF t-tau cells (Cerebro Special Fluid). High levels of t-tau are linked to some diseases like Dementia and Alzheimer's. Improved blood flow due to cycling reduces the risk of mental health issues and keeps diseases at bay. Moreover, daily cycling can improve memory and reverse some mental health conditions.

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Risks in Seniors

As the popularity of ebikes grew, so did the accidents and deaths related to it. Yes, they are affordable, convenient, and fun to ride, but increased fatalities are areas of concern.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) data suggests that seniors account for half of the deaths caused by cycling-related accidents. It makes a case for taking proper safety measures before riding a bike vital and more relevant.

Old age causes deterioration of vision, brittle bones, reduced cognitive functions, and poor coordination and mental awareness, leaving a senior inclined to injuries and fractures.

Statistics suggest that only 7% of cycling injuries are caused by colliding with moving vehicles. In most cases, cyclists fall from the cycle or collide with a stationary object. Most of these injuries happen to seniors and older people.

Safety Tips for Seniors

Safety is the most critical element of safe riding for a senior. It will minimize the chances of accidents and injury. So, here is a compilation of electric bike safety tips for seniors to achieve the goal of safe riding. These tips can be divided into before, during, and after riding an ebike to make it easier to understand and keep track of safety tips. Watch EVERYTHING Seniors Need to Know About E Bikes (Electric bikes) youtube video to better understand your ebike.

Before Riding the Ebike

These are the tips you must consider before going on a cycling adventure for a safe and injury-free ride.

What are the Things You Should Bring on an Ebike Ride?
Bring with you the following things when going on a ride as a senior. All of these are important and save you from the worst scenarios.
1. Water
Water in any form is essential on an ebike ride for seniors. Carry a water bottle with you to avoid dehydration. Anything you take with you must be easy-to-carry.

2. Mobile Phone
A mobile phone is one thing that subdues the importance of all other list articles. Never forget your mobile phone while riding your bike on a beautiful evening.

3. Sunscreen
Apply sunscreen before going out to protect your exposed body parts from getting sunburn. Prevention is better than cure.
Identification Documents
It is advised to keep your identification on you while going on a ride as an older person. You don't want to be left alone in any unfortunate event.

4. Money
What can not be bought with money? Keep that in mind and always carry cash on you in case of an emergency, like your phone can die or you need an instant repair of your ebike. Having cash on you can save you from a lot of trouble.

What Protective Gear a Senior Should Wear?
Let's talk about protective gear and what a senior should wear. It can save you from injury or at least reduce its impact. Following is the list of all the protective gear a senior should wear before going on a ride.

1. Gloves
Wear gloves to save your hands from scratching against something. Moreover, gloves provide a better and firm grip.

2. Knee Pads
Most cycling-related injuries happen in the lower limb, especially the knee. So, keep your knees safe with knee pads.

3. Helmet
A strong helmet can save you from head injury or any possible concussion in a severe accident. So, always wear a helmet while riding your ebike.

4. Sunglasses
Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from ultraviolet radiation and have better vision.

5. Cycling Shorts
It is recommended to wear cycling shorts when going on a bike ride, especially for longer rides. It provides breathing space to your skin and reduces skin-to-cloth friction.

6. Wearing Something Bright
Wearing bright colors will reflect more light and make you more visible to other drivers. It will keep you safe on the road.

7. Body Armor
Body armor can protect you from injury in a fall or collision. So, invest in one and never forget to wear your body armor while riding an ebike.

What Parts to Check Before the Ride?
Check the following parts of your ebike to ensure it is in optimal condition for the ride.

1. Batteries
Make sure the battery of your ebike is fully charged. The last thing you want is an ebike with a battery. As a senior rider, it will cause a lot of trouble if you run out of battery on a long ride.

2. Tires
Check tires for air pressure. Optimize it if they have low pressure. Moreover, replace the tires that are worn out.

3. Brakes
Check both brakes of your ebike and tighten them if you find them loose to ensure safety. Never ride a bike with loose brakes.

4. Saddle
Check the saddle to make sure it is appropriately placed. A loose or misplaced saddle can cause a severe injury and make you lose control of the ebike and fall.
What Ebike Accessories You Should Have?
Your bike must be equipped with the following accessories to make it safer on the road.

5. Mirrors
Your ebike must have mirrors installed to assist you in seeing behind and on the sides.

6. Flags
Install flags on your ebike to make it more visible in the rush of traffic.

7. Blinking Lights
Blinking lights keeps an ebike apart from other vehicles. It will help drivers to identify you from afar.

8. Signals Lights
Signal lights are essential to ensure you are telling people how you turn. Please make sure they are functional before leaving for the ride.

What Laws Should You Check Before Riding an Ebike?
It is essential to know the laws before going on an ebike ride. Following are some laws you must familiarize yourself with to be prepared just in case.

1. Laws and Ordinances
The US has different laws when it comes to ebikes. However, most states have made it compulsory to wear a helmet. So, make sure you are familiar with the law.

2. Local Laws
Local laws can also differ in different areas. Some cities may allow ebikes to use bike lanes while others treat them as motorcycles and force you to use regular roads. Make sure you know your local law to avoid any trouble.

3. Accident Insurance
Nobody knows when things go wrong. So, protect yourself with accident insurance; otherwise, you will be on your own in case of an accident. You will have to pay the damages you cause, which are huge in some cases.

4. Ebike Insurance
Ebikes are a great way to commute, but they are pricy. So, protect your ebike with insurance and keep your investment safe.

General Safety Tips Before Riding the Bike
Here are some general instructions to keep in mind before leaving for an ebike trip.

1. Know Emergency Numbers
Write down or memorize emergency numbers to know where to contact in an emergency. It can save your life.

2. Take Proper Rest
Rest is the key to a beautiful cycling trip. So, take proper rest before your ride.

3. Know Your Body
Check your body to know if you are feeling well to go on an ebike ride. If you are not feeling well, do not go on the ride.

4. Inform Your Close Ones About the Route of Your Trip
Someone other than you must know the details of your trip. What route will you use, and when will you come back so that they can contact the emergency in case of any contrast in the plan. They can guide emergency services better if they know the details of your trip

During Riding the Ebike

The most crucial part is riding an ebike. It is the time when an injury can happen. So, here are some tips to keep in mind while riding your ebike.


Use Cycle Lanes

Use cycle lanes if there are any. Stay with other cyclists if you don't know where to ride. Do not ride on pavements and sidewalks.


Ignore Distractions

There will be a lot of distractions on the road. The key to safe riding is to avoid these distractions. Because it requires only one second to cause an accident, you can not avoid it if you are distracted.


Maintain a Comfortable Speed

Keep a comfortable speed that you can handle easily in case of a sudden incident.


Stay Attentive

Stay attentive to the whereabouts of your route. Keep your eyes on the road with full attention to be safe.


Call Emergency if Facing a Problem

Call the emergency services immediately if you are met with an accident or other calamity.

After Riding the Ebike


Once you are done with your ebike trip, prepare it for the next one. Following are some tips after the bike ride.

Fully Charge Batteries

No matter if you rode only for a short distance, it is recommended to recharge your battery fully. It will make your bike ready to go whenever a need arises.

Check Brakes to Trace Any Fault

Brakes are a vital part of an ebike. Different bikes need different types of care for the brakes. Make sure your brakes are properly looked after.

Check Tires for Possible Exertion

Check for any exertion of the tires. Replace them in case you feel they are losing grip. A worn-out tire can cause a lot of trouble during your ebike ride.

Conclusion

Electric bikes are highest in demand than ever, and senior riders are leading the way. Many health benefits are associated with ebike riding, from physical to mental.

However, the ebikes are not immune to accidents. There are many ebike-related injuries; in most cases, the victims are older people. So, taking precautions before, during, and after the ebike ride is vital.

The article has supplied you with the best supply of electric bike safety tips for seniors. You can download the checklist to make sure don't miss anything while preparing for your next adventure. Stay safe, stay active.