With gas prices continuing to rise and talk about going “green” on everyone’s lips, a new mode of transportation beckons from childhood, bicycling.Students have become a big part recently in this new mode of transportation.
MCC student Andrew Gieseler said he bikes 40 minutes to school everyday, but admitted he didn’t really have a choice because he doesn’t have a car.
Gieseler said that although there are drawbacks to biking like the heat and the possibility of getting a bike stolen, the benefits far outweigh them.
Biking helps people exercise more and lowers pollution to help the environment Gieseler said.
“Plus it’s cheap. I just bought a new bike for $269 but a new car would cost 100 times as much.”
Justin Ames, an ASU student, who works at Tempe Bicycle, believes that students tend to live unhealthy lifestyles and that biking helps him to keep extra weight off.
Ames thinks the biggest downside of biking, aside from the obvious desert heat, is the possibility of an accident.
Tempe is trying to become more biker friendly, Ames said, but the drivers out here are terrible.
People should definitely practice defensive biking and be on their guard, Ames added.
“I’ve been hit twice.” Ames said. “Drivers don’t look right before they turn into traffic.”
Ames said cyclists should always bike in the direction of traffic, stay on sidewalks or in bike lanes as much as possible, have a light for night-riding and always wear a helmet.
Always plan ahead for time, Ames suggested, especially if someone is just starting out.
For beginners, or those who haven’t been on bike since age 13, Ames recommends starting out slow and finding a quiet place with low traffic to bike thru until the rider is really comfortable on the bike.
Ames said students should consider biking to school if they live close by, but because of dangerous conditions, they shouldn’t risk it if they live far away.
For students looking to buy, Tempe Bicycle has bikes that range from $100-$5,000, but Ames said most of the bikes they sell are in the $100-$350 range.
Students can also get 10 percent off if they show their student ID card.
Tempe Bicycle has two locations in Tempe and has been voted best bike shop by New Times and Phoenix Republic readers.
For more information and their locations, students can visit their web site at www.tempebicycle.com