Tri-City Cycling Club

Group Riding Skills & Safety

Group Riding Proficiency

To get the most enjoyment out of group riding it’s important to consider that you meet the minimum level of proficiency. All riders should be able to:

  • Feel comfortable riding at an average speed of 25 km/h for a minimum of 50 km or two hours
  • Ride one-handed in order to be able to signal with right/left hand while maintaining control of your bike
  • Ride in a straight line and not deviate while shoulder checking right or left
  • Maintain a steady and even riding pace while drafting behind other riders no more than one bike length behind

If you don’t know if you’re quite up to this level of riding, we do offer riding clinics, coached rides, casual Saturday coffee rides, off-season gravel rides, and opportunities to connect with other cyclists for impromptu unofficial rides. Please check out our rides & events or contact us with any questions.

What Kind Of Bike Should I Have?

For safety reasons, our road rides will only accommodate road bikes with drop bars. No hybrid, triathlon, time-trial, mountain bikes, or e-bikes. Aero bars are not permitted. Bikes must be equipped with clipless pedals and riders with cycling shoes. No bikes with pedal cages will be allowed to participate.

Our gravel rides are usually on gravel bikes that can handle the dykes and gravel trails but we also allow hybrid and hard-tail mountain bikes with flat bars.

What Do I Need To Bring With Me?

All riders must be self-sufficient and should have the tools and equipment to repair a flat, have food and water, and clothing appropriate for the weather. We recommend the following:

  • A well-maintained bike
  • Helmet (required by law)
  • Spare tube (at least 2)
  • C02 or pump
  • Bike multi-tool
  • Tire levers
  • Water and food
  • Piece of identification
  • Cell phone – with your Ride Leader’s contact information
  • Fenders for wet weather days
  • Rear bike light
  • Bike computer or Strava to follow the route yourself or record and share the ride. Remember: if it’s not on Strava, it didn’t happen!

For our gravel rides it’s also recommended to bring a bell for the shared gravel trails and a front light with minimum 1500 lumens for our Thursday night rides.

Group Riding

Whether you’re a competitive A-level rider or joining your first-ever group ride, we ask that all members review and follow these essential group riding tips and signals.

Single Pace Line

The function of a pace line is to work as a group, together, to use the least amount of energy to go the fastest speed possible over a given distance.

We typically ride is a singe pace line, with the rider at the front “pulling” the riders behind. The group takes turns pulling with the rider out front moving to the left and dropping to the back of the line, and the next rider taking over on the front. Check out this vid on pacelines.

Steady Pace

“Hold your line” is a term cyclists sometimes hear. It means you should keep a predictable line (parallel to the edge of the road), and in line with other riders in your group. Do not speed up, move from side to side, or behave in a way that makes it unsafe for other riders.

Never “half wheel” or “cross wheel.” Half-wheeling is when one of your wheels is overlapping with a wheel of another rider in a pace line. Either pull ahead of a slower rider, or hang back, but never in between. This is dangerous as the other rider could make a sideways move and cause both of you to crash.

Follow the rules of the road

When we wear our club kit, we are ambassadors for the club. Take the high road with aggressive drivers, don’t blow through red lights or stop signs, and be polite with other road users.

Hand Signals

Use hand signals and/or call out to indicate your intentions or to point out hazards such as glass, potholes, bollards or train tracks. In a pace line, pass the message along to riders behind you. Shout “Car Up” or “Car Back” to indicate approaching vehicles. See these common hand signals in action!