Nothing has you feeling more like a kid again than to hop on your bike or being able to skate during the summer on your in-line skates.
Living in Southern Ontario, we are fortunate to have a playground outside our front door. The trail systems, Park and Recreation facilities and neighbourhood parks can definitely help to keep you moving.
The trail systems offer some of the best opportunities to explore areas that link natural regions, parks, valley lands, the Niagara Escarpment, Lake Ontario and communities. We love discovering new pathways to cycle and in-line skate (as well as to run, walk and hike). In fact, the Waterfront Trail covers over 1400km along the Canadian shores of Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair and the Niagara, Detroit and St. Lawrence Rivers. Also, some areas provide opportunities to swim, canoe and kayak.
We never get bored of the trail systems and every time out, it’s a new adventure.
So here are a few tips to make sure your ride and/or skate is safe and fun.
Reduce tight neck muscles by moving your head in every direction every few minutes. Don’t hunch your shoulders or allow your elbows to flare out. Keep your grip relaxed. To test whether your seat is at a proper height, put your heel on the middle of your pedal while seating on the saddle. Your leg should be straight and only just able to touch the pedal. Now when you ride with the ball of your foot on the pedal , you will avoid having a fully extended knee. Tilt your water bottle when having a drink vs your head.
Practice your balance by lifting one skate at a time and holding it as long as you can safely. Then repeat with the other. Rotate your wheels to help distribute the wear evenly. Wipe/brush off your skates as grit left on may get into the bearings. It might not be you but the surface and other people. All safety gear (helmet, wrist guards, elbow and knee pads) is highly recommended as you can’t often anticipate stones, cracks, cars, bikes, walkers etc. in your path.
And for both, don’t let a headwind defeat you. It’s okay to go slower and shift to an easier “gear”. Also it can be a perfect time to work on your form.
Enjoy being a kid again this summer!
Keep Fit and Have Fun
Hal & Joanne