Tips and Information

Quick Guide to Riding


Neon is your friend, the brighter the better. Dark themed cycling kits blend dangerously with shadows, surrounding foliage, and road asphalt. 

Lights help alert others to your presence. Front and rear flashing lights help cyclists be more visible to other road users.

Helmets are mandatory on El Paso Bicycle Club sanctioned rides. Several club members can attest to the effectiveness of helmets when contacting the ground unexpectedly.


Do a pre-ride ABC check; tire Air pressure, Brakes, Chain.

An oiled chain is a quiet chain.

Be self-sufficient with a roadside repair kit. Must have items include a spare tube, inflation device, tire levers, and a bike tool.

Learn how to use the repair kit and be able to change out a punctured tube.


A quick spray from the water bottle can distract a dog

Pedal fast, dogs do not pursue for a long distance

Tips for new riders by Patty Chamales


Tuck your shoelaces into your shoes.

If no chain guard, tie bottom of pants leg.

Blue jeans are hard on the body – center seam rubs much.

Bright shirts are best.

Turn signals:

Left turn-point left with arm straight out.

Right turn-point right with arm straight out.

Slow down and stop – left arm pointing downward, open palm.

Verbalize to warn those around you:

Say loudly what you are doing – “slowing”, “stopping”, “left turn”, etc.

Do your turn arm signal before the turn and have both hands on the handlebars for the turn.

Speak loudly your left, right turn and especially the slowing and stopping intention.

Point out and SPEAK road hazards – “hole”, “gravel”, “roadkill”, “glass”, etc.

Speak loud and clear, relay warnings from ahead or behind you to keep fellow cyclists informed.

Don’t weave. Ride in a straight line.

Stay on right side of road. Never cross middle line in the road.

Even when riding side by side – stay to the right and don’t even get close to center line.


Before you get to the front rider’s back wheel, say loudly, “On your left!”

Pass only on the left.

Ride about a bicycle length behind the bike in front of you.

Position of foot and legs as you pedal:

Ball of foot (padded area behind toes) should be on the pedal.

Knees should be pointed straight ahead or slightly inward.

Keep your cadence (pedaling rate) steady.

Stopping spinning for a bit only makes it harder to get going again.

Find a comfortable cadence (pedaling rate) and keep with it.

Tired? Shift one click (gear) to an easier gear.

Don’t spin (pedal) so fast that you look like a hamster on a wheel.

Don’t use pure force of muscles to pedal your bike.


Shift only one click at a time and keep pedaling.

Don’t stand up and pedal except for hills or when you need to sprint to catch up.


Don’t brake suddenly- it could cause a pile up.

Brake front and back at the same time. Braking only in the front could cause an end over.

Numb hands? Loosen grip, stretch your hands, change body position.

Railroad Tracks:

Go over tracks at a right angle.

Going over a track sideways or close could cause tire to slip and you to fall.

Check to see how rough the terrain at the track is and adjust your speed.


Left shifter controls the chain on the front-chain rings (gears). For flat terrain, use either the middle or the big ring.

The smallest ring in front (granny gear) is used for hills or extreme wind.

Right shifter controls the chain on the rear cogs. Change gears as you pedal to find a comfortable gear.

Shift one click at a time – until you find a comfortable cadence (pedaling speed).


Get in Touch

El Paso Bicycle Club
PO Box 13040
El Paso, TX 79913

The “El Paso Bicycle Club” name and the “Chile Pepper Challenge” are copyrights of the El Paso Bicycle Club. 2023.