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Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 6:05 pm
by Lycra Lady
I am 51 yrs old and just ordered a Argon 18 Plutonium bike, I have never ridden before apart from short stints on a mountain bike.
I am feeling a bit nervous about using cleats when clicking into the pedals. I have bought mountain bike shoes as I feel I will be able to manage the process better with these.
I must be going through a mid life crisis as took up running a couple of years ago haha. Any advice is welcome!

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 6:15 pm
by Mustang
You have decided what you want to do, advice will follow. My wife has just also started with mountain bike clipins. Hang around the forum & ask questions. Ride on a grass surface clipping in & out, it soon becomes natural. All the best. :D :D :D

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 6:16 pm
by CommuRider
Welcome and just keep riding :-)

(nothing wrong with taking up running and cycling as part of a crisis!)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:05 pm
by Mulger bill
G'Day LL, welcome outside :)

As Mustang said, the trick to learning to use clipless pedals is to start with the binding tension backed right off and to do lots of laps of your local footy ground. Don't look at your feet either, you want the action to become automatic as soon as possible.

There's worse ways to have a mid life crisis :wink:

Cheers
Shaun

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:38 pm
by Lycra Lady
Thanks heaps for your supportive comments and advice! :)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:49 pm
by Eleri
The good thing about those pedals, if they are like mine, is that you clip in on one side and the other side is just a normal pedal. That means it's really easy to just ride with your feet on top of the pedals, not clipped in. It helps when you are just getting started, especially when getting going at the traffic lights or intersections or something. That what's really good about those moutain bike shoes (SPDs - which means something presumably). You can clip in later when you have got over that initial rush to get the bike going.

Unclipping is the bit to remember but you'll be nervous about that so you won't forget unless you get flustered. Just unclip ahead of when you think you need to, you'll be right!

More women our age should ride - I reckon there's something to be said for a bit of maturity on the bike.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 10:58 pm
by im_no_pro
A stationary trainer can also help with getting used to clipping in and out, it's what I have done for my wife, if you dont have access to one, grass is your friend :)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 5:01 pm
by moosterbounce
I held onto a table and practised clipping in and out for about 30 minutes. Not very interesting so I suggest you watch TV at the same time. After a while it will become second nature. Even with grass to fall on, I wouldn't have ridden straight away with cleats without having done this first. When you are comfortable to upgrade to grass, learn how to fall and don't panic while doing it. Sorry if that sounds negative, but if you hang out bits like arms and knees then they will get hurt.

I've never done the grass thing but I've heard it helps.

Welcome aboard :)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 5:13 pm
by goneriding
1. you will clip stack. Everyone does. If you search on here you'll even find a thread about it. Just make sure you add yours ;)
2. if you are new to the roadie thing I'd suggest not using clip ins to start off with. Just ride in runners for a couple of weeks to get used to the bike.
3. when you do clip stack find somewhere soft to land and maybe spend a few weeks riding on safer bike paths before going out on the road.
4. mid life crisis. If you think that's bad wait until you discover upgraditis :)


Can't think of anything else other than welcome :)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 5:35 pm
by wombatK
im_no_pro wrote:A stationary trainer can also help with getting used to clipping in and out, it's what I have done for my wife, if you dont have access to one, grass is your friend :)

If you don't have a stationery trainer, get your bike in a standard doorway (where you can hold on to both sides). Practice clipping in and out by back-pedalling (i.e. freewheeling). When you think you've got it right, graduate to park paths etc.,. where grass is better to fall on. Once out in traffic, try to look ahead and clip-out well before you have to come to a stop.

Cheers

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:57 am
by Fabby
Lycra Lady wrote:Thanks heaps for your supportive comments and advice! :)


Practice,Practice and more Practice :D

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:59 am
by tjw_69
I'm also fairly new and I've had 2 clip stacks (one in the driveway!). It is almost inevitable and suprisingly other than embarrassment and a small graze on my leg it wasn't that bad. I am very aware of whats ahead and if unsure unclip one. Hoping you're loving it as much as I am.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:23 pm
by Robdog
Eleri wrote:(SPDs - which means something presumably)

Shimano Pedal Dynamics - They came up with a cool acronym and scrambled to find words to fit methinks :roll:

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:04 pm
by Osbos
Hey Lycra Lady, I had been cycling for decades on road, mountain and hybrid bikes with toe clips. I was in my 50s when I got click in pedals on my road bike. No problem getting used to them. Talk to the people at your local bike store to get them set up so they release easily and you can click out quickly. It doesn't take long to get used to them and you'll wonder why it took you so long to try them.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:00 pm
by Lycra Lady
Well I picked up my bike today and yes I did have a fall........ on on the driveway (when my husband was supposed to be holding the bike haha), and on the grass. Practiced heaps and am feeling way better now, went for a little ride on a bike path as was not feeling ready to hit the road and I had also been for a run prior so the legs were a bit tired. I am okay at unclipping now when I can plan ahead but panic and get flustered if i have to suddenly stop. Thanks for all your input I really appreciate it. Looking forward to improving and graduating to the road.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:59 pm
by wombatK
Congrats on taking the plunge - you won't look back. In a couple of weeks, it'll be second nature, and the panic attacks
will fade into distant memories.

However, one reservation I've got is that if you live in Sydney, the falls could well have been due to heat exhaustion.
Clipless pedals can't protect you from that !

Cheers

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Feb 06, 2011 1:10 am
by casual_cyclist
moosterbounce wrote:I held onto a table and practised clipping in and out for about 30 minutes. Not very interesting so I suggest you watch TV at the same time. After a while it will become second nature. Even with grass to fall on, I wouldn't have ridden straight away with cleats without having done this first. When you are comfortable to upgrade to grass, learn how to fall and don't panic while doing it. Sorry if that sounds negative, but if you hang out bits like arms and knees then they will get hurt.

I've never done the grass thing but I've heard it helps.

Welcome aboard :)

It's true. I have gone over a couple of times but stayed relaxed and kept my arms and legs tucked in. For me, it didn't hurt a bit!

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:33 am
by Eleri
Lycra Lady wrote:Well I picked up my bike today and yes I did have a fall........ on on the driveway (when my husband was supposed to be holding the bike haha), and on the grass. Practiced heaps and am feeling way better now, went for a little ride on a bike path as was not feeling ready to hit the road and I had also been for a run prior so the legs were a bit tired. I am okay at unclipping now when I can plan ahead but panic and get flustered if i have to suddenly stop. Thanks for all your input I really appreciate it. Looking forward to improving and graduating to the road.



You will get better and it becomes second nature very quickly. Everyone has the panic at first, especially when something unexpected happens. I saw a young woman from my work last night in the park, she was on her first clipped ride and doing well until she recognised me and tried to stop and say hello - and fell off right in front of me. Happens to everyone - has certainly happened to me.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:29 pm
by Apple
Welcome and all the above is true.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:45 pm
by Mulger bill
Lycra Lady wrote:Well I picked up my bike today...

Sweet 8)
Pics, pics, pics, pics, pics, pics, pics, pics, pics. It aint real until the pics are up :wink:

Well somebdy had to say it :mrgreen:

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Mar 27, 2011 9:24 pm
by Lycra Lady
Can't believe that I completed my longest ride so far safe and sound and then fell off at the last set of traffic lights on my way to the coffee shop!!
I would put pics up if I knew how to! I am not only a novice bike rider but apparently a novice computer user as well haha.

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Mar 27, 2011 9:39 pm
by marinmomma
Lycra Lady wrote:Can't believe that I completed my longest ride so far safe and sound and then fell off at the last set of traffic lights on my way to the coffee shop!!
I would put pics up if I knew how to! I am not only a novice bike rider but apparently a novice computer user as well haha.



Ha, that's often the way it is...complete a ride only to have a brain snap and the end and end up having a clip stack, I think that we've all been there and done that!

Keep going and it will become second nature.

:)

Re: Nervous new beginner

Posted: Sun Mar 27, 2011 9:40 pm
by wombatK
Lycra Lady wrote:I would put pics up if I knew how to! I am not only a novice bike rider but apparently a novice computer user as well haha.

Any moderator should be only too happy to help you with loading the pics... pm Mulger Bill and he won't be able to help himself :)

Don't beat yourself up about the clip-stack. Everyone makes mistakes when they're tired.