Monday, 10 June 2013

First posting trying something new

Good morning, and welcome.
I have been thinking about trying this, blogging, for some time now and have finally gotten up the nerve to as Nike says... just do it.
My name is Chuck GLOVER, I am a CAN-BIKE National Examiner and Instructor with the CAN-BIKE program.  I also sit along with two others(in Ontario) on the curriculum committee for CAN-BIKE.
I teach here in the British Columbia lower mainland and Vancouver Island.  I teach the safe use of cycling in a way that allows the rider to travel with traffic in a safe comfortable and defensive manor.  I don't teach to treat the cars and others using the road way as the enemy, but rather to work with those on the roads, pathways and bike routes.
There are those that would consider those opposite thoughts, but being able to ride your bike in any conditions in a safe and respectful way without compromising either your safety or that of those around you is the main goal.
At the end of the day everyone goes home safely and in one piece.
Cycling is supposed to be for recreation, fun, enjoyment, travel, and commuting.  Being green and part of your environment is good for all, but you have to be safe to enjoy what you are doing.
I come from a Policing backround and a large part of the skills I teach have that as part of the basis.  No I don't teach the use of the bike as a weapon, as some would wish.  That can be left to the Bruce LEE types that seem to find a weapon in everything they touch.
Bike are tools, not weapons, they can be used to protect the rider if the circumstances warrant it.  Defensive not offensive.  Bikes are also formally considered vehicles in most jurisdictions.  Check the Motor Vehicle Act in your area, knowledge is power, and cycling knowledge will keep you alive.
We have all heard the term.. there are old riders, and there are bold riders, but there are no old, bold riders.
Those that are riding after a lot of years of riding will understand that there are many more ways to get where one is going and indeed wants to go than pushing and trying to be aggressive.  Two wheels and 250 pounds don't match up to 4 wheels and 2250 pounds.
I teach "If the car driver wants that piece of road more than you do... let him have it."  It's great to be right, but do you want to be dead right?!?!
Part of what I want to do with this blog is to talk about cycling safety and different aspect to that topic and theme.
This is my first try at this and I hope that for those that might want to follow and possibly communicate with me, from where ever, I can entertain, enlighten, teach  and maybe pose thoughts and ideas that will invoke discussion, along with points to ponder.

 I believe in Bike Helmets, and I very truly believe Bike Helmets are a very good idea.  They safe lives and lesson injuries, and lesson brain injuries.  Please note I said lesson, not eliminate.  They call them brain buckets for a reason, they protect the brain.
There are those that don't agree and will never agree with this, so I am prepared to say we will not agree.
When my kids were growing up we coined the phrase... It's cool to wear a Bike Helmet.
My daughter was the first child to wear a bike helmet to her school in Swift Current, way back when. So I have walked the walk as it were.  We had the rule.. No Helmet, No Bike.  I still use that rule when I ride, and I teach that rule as a corner stone, and it's written in stone in my world.

Another aspect I am passionate about is the use of Hi-Visibility traffic type vest, you know the obnoxious orange ones.  The ones no one looks good in, but can been seen and make a bold statement when riding.  If they can see you, you have a better chance to make it.  When I ride I wear a vest that on a clear day can be tracked from the space shuttle, as I can be seen by those in vehicles sharing the same roads that I am on.
Combine the vest with lights and I believe this is a combination that will safe lives.  It works for me and I ride both my mountain bike and my road toy on the roads in this area around Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

Lets call it defensive riding.  Like defensive driving that is spoken about you need to make sure you are riding and watching others around you and for others around you.

Common sense is no longer common and courtesy seems to be a thing of the past.  Know your spaceial  placement, and what you can and can not do.  These are a couple of points that will be reoccurring themes as I write this.

I want to continue this blog for the next while and see where it leads.

Thanks for tuning in and reading along.


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