I have a confession: I am 32 years old and love the idea of urban bike-riding and other alternative modes of transportation. And, I cannot – or at least could not until very recently – ride a bike.
A few years ago, I was lucky to participate in an renewal fellowship for Indiana’s youth development leaders. The fellowship provided a modest pot of “renewal funds”. One of the things I used my funds for was to buy a shiny new bike. And then, other than some limited stuttering starts in parking lots, it sat prettily in my garage (along with another lovely vintage bike that I received as a thoughtful gift when I was a teenager), biding time.
Silly, right? There’s a great deal of anxiety that goes along with learning to ride as an adult. Add to that my own personal perfectionism and difficulty being not-good at almost anything in front of others, and you will get a red-faced, nervous learning experience. It’s different for an adult than it is for a kid. Plus, adult riders, if they are anything like me, are likely to carry along a certain amount of embarrassment related to never having learned this skill.
But I know I am not alone – there are many adults who would like to ride but, for whatever reason, haven’t gotten there. So, over the next few weeks, I’ll be writing about the experience. So far, I’m in the quiet streets ridership phase. My posts will cover the process, some ideas I’ve gleaned from the web and my own experience, and also – when I get there – the tricky part of learning not only to ride, but learning to ride in an urban environment.
Let’s get this party started – what are your thoughts on bike-riding and/or learning new things or your own experiences with this topic?