When we get older, we get more fragile, and we tend to lose flexibility. This is entirely normal, and we should all expect to become a little less flexible as we age. One thing I am often asked as a cycling trainer by many senior citizens is how they should be mounting a bike. As strange as it sounds, when you are older, as it is much more challenging to do.
The reason I am asking this is that as you get older or are new to cycling, it can be difficult. In this article, I want to tell you about the best way to mount a bike for a senior citizen and some ways to make it easier if you are struggling and want some advice.
How Should You Mount a Bike?
There are a few methods to mount a bike, and in my opinion, the ready mount method is not only the easiest but also the safest. It’s not about getting on the bike quickly. It’s about getting on the bike safely and not falling off the other side.
Stand next to the bike, either side is fine, but we recommend having the bike on your right-hand side while you’re looking in the same direction as the front wheel is facing. Hold onto the handlebars with your left hand and make sure you’re about a foot away from the bike.
Lean the bike over towards you and try and get it at a 40-degree angle towards yourself. Now, if you have a step-through bike, then you will have to place your right foot forward and through the frame. If you have the bike with a high-top tube, send your right foot back and round over the saddle.
Now you have the bike in between your legs and each foot firmly on the floor. Take your right pedal to the 2 o’clock position and then place your foot on the top of it.
You now need to push off, so applying pressure to the right foot, you want to stand on the pedal, which will lift you up, get your behind on the saddle, and then bring your left foot to the other pedal and start pedaling.
When you’re ready to dismount, slow down, drop the left foot to the floor and lean the bike to that side. Then reverse the steps to get off the bike.
Tips for Getting on and Off a Bike Easier
So now you know the proper way to mount a bike. If you are still struggling, then we need to get a little creative to make it easier for you. In this next section, I will tell you some ways to make mounting a bike easier.
Many modern bikes have very big top tubes, making them very challenging to get on and off. Another option is getting a step through bike. You’re probably thinking of a bike like a shopper, but now they make modern road-style bikes with a step-through frame that looks excellent and just makes getting on and off so much easier.
You also can improve your flexibility by doing a few simple pilates movements. You can open up those hip flexors, and then it will be much easier to swing your leg over the bike. Stretches like the Butterfly stretch will really help. Only stretch if you feel ok to do so, and if you feel any pain, then stop and see a medical professional.
Make sure your saddle isn’t too high
It’s worth making sure that your bike seat isn’t too high. If your bike seat is too high, this can make it very challenging to swing your leg over, and it can make you feel very uncomfortable when trying to get on the bike. You don’t want to injure yourself from getting on your bike.
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It may seem simple, but if you’re not getting on your bike correctly, it comes with some risks. You don’t want to pull a muscle stretching your leg too much or hit your saddle while swinging your leg over and fall over. If you are new to cycling or less mobile in older age, getting on and off a bike is something you might want to practice.