Whether you are a serious or casual rider, there is little chance that you have not noticed the marked impact technology is having on the world of cycling.
While many of these innovations are shared with other sports (running in particular), some are specifically designed with cyclists in mind. To hardcore riders, certain state-of-the-art products might seem gimmicky or opportunistic, useless appendages that will be a talking point for a few months before being dismissed as another facile trend.
On the other hand, novice riders might be captivated by these products. They might view them as offering an extra dimension to cycling culture, something fresh to bring to their introduction to the road and different terrains.
Either way, technologies will continue to emerge to challenge or improve the existing landscape. Here are just a few making the rounds in 2016.
Cycling gear has come a long way over the years, but the changes have mostly been to clothing materials.
Helmets have evolved, but not to the point we are seeing currently. Introducing the Morpher Folding Helmet, so designed to allow cyclists to carry this cycling essential more easily.
“Morpher folds and unfolds quickly and simply so it’s perfect for cyclists who want to carry a helmet more easily. Patented worldwide, Morpher has been designed to surpass all relevant safety standards,” Morpher says on its website.
As Planet Earth gets greener and fitter we’re cycling more and more. More than a hundred cities now have cycle rental schemes which are proving to be hugely popular. But very few of us non bike owners are wearing helmets.
“According to research, the main reason is that they are simply too cumbersome to carry around all day, especially if you may only be taking a ten minute bike ride. It’s inevitable that as more people take to the road on a bicycle, more people will have accidents. When head meets road, vehicle or pavement without a helmet on it’s generally pretty messy, and often fatal!”
3D printed bikes
3D printing has become fairly common, but that does not make it any less remarkable. That products can come to life by the simple act of placing layer after layer of materials from a three-dimensional digital image is an incredible, to say the least.
Manufacturer TI Cycles has not only got in the act, but even added additional technologies to its Solid bike.
Solid, which is aimed at new riders, also comes complete with two apps. My Bike, which literally runs on pedal power, sends messages to your phone when repairs are needed to the bike, while My City, acts as a kind of GPS for bikes, except in this instance the handlebars vibrate to indicate when the rider should turn.
Cellphone charging bike light
Again not aimed at competitive riders, this innovation is just what it says it is.
Developed by FlyKly, the light snaps onto the handlebars (or any other desired part of the bike) and makes use of pedal power to generate the necessary energy.
Although it seems very gimmicky, it is actually incredibly useful for riding at night, especially in remote areas.