Whether you already have a bike or just purchased one, you should consider some essential accessories to go with it. Here’s what you shouldn’t leave home without:
Are helmets cool? Yes, protecting your brain is very, very cool. Helmet technology and design have improved over the years. You can choose from many different styles and brands and there are plenty of stylish helmets out there. Which helmet you end up with depends on your riding preferences (commute, mountain bike or road), your budget and your personal taste. Road bike helmets are lightweight, generously ventilated and feature an aerodynamic design. MTB helmets are distinguished by their visor, which protects against sun and mud, and enhanced rear-head coverage. The Bontrager Solstice MIPS helmet and ladies helmet, for example, comes in colour ways for everyone, features extended coverage for added protection and durability and large vents for increased airflow.
Sure, bike lights help you see when riding at night, they also help ensure you’re seen by other cyclists, pedestrians and drivers. The days of only using a bike light when it’s dark are passé. Thanks to research done by some of the biggest brands in cycling, daytime running lights have become an essential item as they help you be seen quickly and easily. But it’s not only the usage of lights that has changed; They’re also smaller, easier to mount and demount and are more powerful.
- Bottle Cages and Water Bottle
If you’re riding for long periods, hydrating is a must and depending on how long and where you ride you should make it a habit of drinking regularly. Most bikes have bolts on the frame that allow to install bottle cages. We recommend getting bottle cages and bottles of the same brand as access to the bottles tends to be easier.
- Saddle Bag
There are certain things you should always have on you when riding. A spare tube, a bike pump or CO2 cartridge and a patch kit are among these things. Eliminate the possibility of forgetting anything at home by putting them in a saddle bag as opposed to in your pockets, jersey or a bag. It will be more comfortable on your ride and you’ll always be prepared. Just make sure you don’t forget to restock your saddle bag in case you used your spare tube or CO2 cartridge.
- Hand Pump
A small hand pump can make a huge difference in the event of a puncture. Stash it in the back pocket of your jersey or, even better, mount it to your bike frame. If you’re not keen on using a pump, a CO2 cartridge is a good alternative.
- Reflective Material
Add some reflective items to your cycling kit to be more visible and help drivers to easily spot you. You’ll find reflective material in most bike categories including clothing, saddle bags, shoes, socks or reflective bands. Note that reflective accessories or clothing don’t have to be fluorescent. Fluorescent colours are only effective in the presence of ultraviolet rays during the day. For maximum visibility wear fluorescent during the day and reflective at night.
Like your new bike? Thieves might too. Especially as a commuter, a bike lock is a necessary accessory on your rides given you want to find your bike where you left it last. The Abus Bordo folding lock, for example, prevents your bike from involuntarily receiving a new owner. It features compact, foldable steel bars with an extra soft coating to prevent frame damage. Tip: Keep the key on your regular key chain to make sure you always have it on hand.
In some jurisdictions, cyclists are required by law to have a bell or horn on their bike. However, bells aren’t just a way to alert others of your presence but they can also score your bike some extra style points. If you're looking to add some flare, look into some of the more fun options. A bell in the shape of a cat, doughnut or dinosaur is sure to encourage good communication.