Ride IllinoisRide Illinois

Biking Info for Adults

Most adults learned how to ride a bike when they were kids. For many of us, there’s much more to learn! Those who expand their knowledge of safe bicycling practices have better safety records and are more confident riding on streets to more places. A great place to start is our BikeSafetyQuiz, which helps you discover what you don’t know – and fills in the gaps with illustrated explanations.

Bicycling can be a terrific way to commute to work, run errands, and skip the parking quagmires around popular destinations. Safety isn’t the only concern for adult cyclists. Figuring out how to dress, carry items, handle inclement weather, and select safe, interesting routes can help you get the most from your bicycle.

A bike that is the right size and type for your needs is a bike that will actually get used. A petite woman might need smaller than standard brake levers. A parent who uses a trailer for the trip to day care might prefer a sturdy, upright bicycle to manage the load and increase visibility. A year-round commuter might combine the versatility of a hybrid bike with the utility of fenders and waterproof panniers.

A local bike shop can help you find the right bike, fit, and accessories to suit your all of your cycling needs.

Cycling does not require specialized clothing. Many people simply wear their regular clothing. Some people even wear suits and dresses while biking. An ankle strap or chain guard keeps pants out of the bike chain. Another option is to change at the destination. Rolling clothes in your panniers, bike bag, or backpack helps minimize wrinkles.

If you’re concerned about getting too hot or sweating, ride at a leisurely pace or plan to freshen up once you reach your destination. Where there’s a will, there’s a way!

The Illinois Vehicle Code states: Bicyclists riding on a highway are granted all of the rights and are subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle, with certain exceptions. In other words: Same roads, same rights and responsibilities. These Bike Safety Tips will help you ride safely, comfortably, and legally.

Be sure to download our Bike Law Wallet Card for the main statutes pertaining to cyclists in Illinois.

For the most part, the road network is also the bike network. Except where expressly prohibited, people can and do ride bicycles everywhere – from calm rural roads, to busy state routes, to congested downtown streets.

Ride Illinois works to make our state a better, safer place for cyclists of all ages, abilities, and comfort levels. By addressing known problems and being proactive in regards to infrastructure, many communities are becoming safe places for adults and children to ride just about anywhere! Click here for more tips for choosing your route.