On the road or on the trail, you have to look back

Bike Mirror
Image by Dawn Endico via Flickr

Don’t trust that little voice inside your head saying, “Don’t look back.” (Listen to that as you read on…)

Understand that Satchel Paige was wrong.

You have to look back – frequently – if you’re on a bicycle. At least a couple of dangerous sorts of things might be gaining on you:

  • A speeding motor vehicle, whose driver is drunk, sleeping, talking on a cell phone, texting and/or doesn’t think you belong on the road…. (I could go on.)
  • Another cyclist who is going to pass you without saying anything. (Don’t get me started on these people. How difficult is it to say, “On your left”?)

Since few of us are truly skilled enough to look over our shoulder without swerving into traffic, get a mirror.

Use it on every ride. Check it often.

Take evasive action as needed.

Live to ride another day.

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1 Response to “On the road or on the trail, you have to look back”


  1. 1 art3 November 23, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    a helmet is often promoted as the most important safety item for a bike rider, but I rank the mirror as more important, especially when riding on the road with cars!. My safety equipment priority: mirror, helmet, gloves. But truth be told, I would not get on a bike without all three.


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