bicycle

Cycling with Disabilities and Injuries

14 Below Zero - Broken Hand
I haven’t been on a bicycle for 7 days. The reason? A couple of cracked ribs. I’ve tried each and every day to cycle, but it hasn’t been possible. When a simple cough is enough to bring tears to your eyes, riding a bicycle is a long shot. A serious blow to my pride but hey, at least I can walk around the neighbourhood. Which is nice.

Many Danish cities have small cars like these to measure the level of comfort on the bicycle infrastructure. I have a better, cheaper idea.

The city should just give citizens with broken or cracked ribs a smartphone, with activated GPS and a live line to a person at the Bicycle Office. Then they just ride around the city. Every time an OWWWW! or groan is heard, the GPS location is registered. That way the city will be able to map the spots that need maintenence. Now broken ribs are one thing, but what of citizens with more serious injuries or disabilities?

So I thought I’d whips together this article with photos of Copenhageners and other urban dwellers cycling with injuries or disabilities or using other vehicles that improve accessibility and mobility.

Like the shot of a Copenhagener in the morning rush hour (above) riding with what looks like a broken – or at least injured – hand, above. Still looking cool as you like.
Bicycle Crutches 02
Then there is this Copenhagener carrying her crutches with her on her bicycle. Fair enough, she might have been heading to the hospital – across the street – to deliver the crutches back.
Double Crutch
Then I remembered this shot from a while back of a girl carrying her crutches and getting doubled by her mum. The bicycle is a versatile tool. I know several friends who, after many years playing sports, have problems with their knees. They are invariably advised to ride a bicycle by their doctors.

Urban Mobility
There is a bike for almost everyone.

If you also make the bicycle the quickest and safest way to get around a city, people will do so – whatever their physical challenges. The bicycle is a freedom machine for many people.
Mobility Five Wheels, Three Arms
The dapper gentleman to the left may have reduced mobility for whatever reason, but he can get out and about with ease on this tricycle. Note his cane sticking out of the back.

I see the man in the right photo quite often. He rides a tricycle and only has one arm. A friend of mine knows him and I’m told that he only has one leg, too. He lost his limbs in a landmine explosion in the country he was born. He still gets about with ease on his wheels. Both of these gentlemen were impeccably dressed.

Bicycle Mobility
This gent is amazing and so is his cargo bike. A retrofitted Nihola lets him ride around the city with no lower arms and only one leg to pedal with. Fantastic.

Rock Star
If you’re a legendary Danish rock star, like Steen Jørgensen (above), you have a certain look to maintain and Steen pulls it off to perfection. The fact that he has no left arm is of little consequence.

Disabled Motion
I took this photo in Tokyo. The man had some form of disability with his legs. It required effort for him to get the pedals to turn but you can bet that it was a fraction of the effort he’d use when walking.

Casting Call Crutch Bike Crutch Bike
The lady on the left has a kind of cast on her leg, but still rides. The two photos on the right are from last winter. The boyfriend was holding the girls’ crutches and she moved slowly along – injured foot wrapped in plastic – on a child’s bicycle they had borrowed. It was icy so the crutches were probably more dangerous than helpful so the bicycle stepped in to assist. They were heading to the hospital down the road.

Vienna Cyclist Sticks
I spotted this lady in Vienna, Austria. Carrying her walking sticks to help her after she got off her bicycle.

This quaint sign on this tricycle reads, “Slightly Disabled”.

Invalidecykler
What with all the bicycle options for disabled – whether permanently or temporarily – it’s not surprising to see a parking sign like this outside my local library. It reads “Invalid Bicycles”, reserving a space close to the door for those who need it.

Wheelchairs
Montreal Wheelchair
I took this photo in Montreal. A trike pulling a wheelchair behind. This takes intermodality to a whole new level.

Wheelchair Transport
This retrofitted Nihola (it really is the Danish brand that offers unique variations of their cargo bikes) is designed simply to carry a wheelchair with passenger.

Walker Transport
This gent has his walker in the front of his cargo bike – intermodality once again.

Active Cyclist
You see many trike brands in operation in Copenhagen on a daily basis. This gent had what appeared to be Down Syndrome and he enjoys active mobility on this trike.

Electric Vehicles
Amsterdam Cycle Chic - Wheelie
Spotted in Amsterdam. An electric scooter with the wheelchair on a rack on the back. Compared to other cities, you see so many of such vehicles on the cycle tracks of Amsterdam and Copenhagen. Used by people with disabilities and the elderly. It’s a massive market with many brands. Offering urban mobility to people who might be restricted to a wheelchair.

Heading For The City
Cool as you like in Copenhagen.

Bicycle Cane
If it is ripe old age that has reduced mobility, the bicycle still serves a purpose. I see this lady all the time in my neigbourhood. Always walking her bicycle with groceries in the basket. Perhaps too unstable to ride, but using the bicycle as a kind of crutch. Lovely.

Copenhagenize the planet. And have a lovely day.

Urban AdvenTours/Urban Cycles is Hiring!

From Urban Adventours:

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Bike enthusiasts wanted!

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Urban AdvenTours/Urban Cycles in Downtown Boston is looking for hard-working and positive individuals who want to be part of a 14-year-old bike company that is growing and expanding in downtown Boston and in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.

Located in the North End/Waterfront, we specialize in high-end, quality bike rentals and unique bicycle tours of the Boston area, with an emphasis on customer service. Complimenting these offerings is our full-service bike shop which offers convenient services with the bicycle commuter in mind. We are known for our fun and friendly attitude and our ‘I Bike Boston’ branded goods which help support the local cycling community.

Now hiring:

  • Bicycle Mechanics
  • Sales and Retail Associates
  • Bicycle Tour Guides
  • Tour and Rental Manager

Full time, Part time, and Seasonal positions available. If you would like to set up an informational interview to find out more about immediate opportunities with us, please just send along a resume to jobs@urbanadventours and a short note on your desired position, availability and cycling experience to email provided. Keep it wheel!

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Update From Bikes Not Bombs

Our Bike Shop is moving out of 18 Bartlett Square.

After more than ten years, our award winning Bike Shop is moving out of 18 Bartlett Square in Jamaica Plain when our lease expires at the end of this year in December. In our recent Letter from the Director we shared our plan to move the Shop into the Brewery building with our Hub at 284 Amory Street providing increased visibility in an established business environment where we plan to build a seamless connection between our Bike Shop and Youth Pathways. By integrating our space, we plan to diversify apprenticeships for teens and increase participation among women, girls, and vulnerable communities in many aspects of our social enterprise beyond mechanics, including retail management, accounting, marketing, and leadership development. We plan to continue providing youth with income, tangible skills, connections to others and a safe space to grow as we recognize our full potential as a Bike Shop and Training Center for Youth, while continuing to feature expert mechanic services, refurbished bicycles, parts and accessories, and increased access to clinics on bicycle safety and mechanics. Please check our Unite Under One Roof FAQs, as we continue to share updates on our plan’s progress.

     Photo by Chris Leong

How You Can Help

Use the bicycle as a vehicle for social change.

It has never been more crucial to take action to stop climate change, and we are proud to be an organization that has been able to put both environmental sustainability and social justice at the forefront of what we do each and every day. Our commitment to keeping thousands of bicycles out of the waste stream by giving these bikes a new life and continued value whether shipped internationally or refurbished locally by our youth and shop staff means that more underserved communities have access to environmentally friendly means of transportation, mutually benefitting both the earth and its inhabitants.

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Donate now.

Donating to support our mission is the best way you can ensure that Bikes Not Bombs’ Youth Pathways, International Partnerships and Bike Shop programs continue to grow. If each of the recipients of this e-newsletter donated just $10 today, we would be able to realize the dream of our Hub and Shop integration more fully by next year.

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Shop our fall sale.

This weekend, Friday, October 19th 1pm-6:30pm, Saturday, October 20th 9am-4pm, and Sunday, October 21st 12pm-4pm, we will be having a Fall Sale at the Bike Shop.Everything (except service, repairs and labor) will be 15% off. This includes:

  • refurbished and new bikes
  • used and new parts
  • accessories
  • apparel

The more you buy, the less we have to move. Every dollar you spend at the Bike Shop will help ensure our local youth programs and international partnership work continues to thrive. Every time you buy a refurbished bike, you keep a bike out of the waste stream and give it a new life.

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Take this short survey about our Bike Shop.

We value your feedback! By taking this short survey about our Bike Shop, you will help us understand what kinds of bikes and gear you’re looking for and how we may improve to serve your needs… and you just might win a BNB T-shirt! Please contact our Director of Learning and Evaluation, René Milet at rene@bikesnotbombs.org with any questions regarding this survey.

Rally For Safer Bike Lanes TONIGHT 6pm, City Hall

From Cambridge Bike Safety:

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Today is the day! Cambridge Bicycle Safety invites you to join us at 6:00 pm TONIGHT at City Hall, Wednesday October 17th, for the Rally for Safer Bike Lanes, our most important bike safety event of the year.

To show why this matters we will be putting 160 bikes on the City Hall lawn to represent how many times each year first responders are called to a crash when a person on a bike is hit by a car.

  • RSVP now on facebook and show up at 6pm.
  • Bring your bike and bike lights!
  • Invite friends and family who support completing the network of protected bike lanes.

At the rally we’ll be officially launching a petition campaign to complete a city-wide network of protected bike lanes in five years and you’ll have the opportunity to hear the stories of people from all walks of life in Cambridge who bike and walk.

A citywide network of protected bike lanes would make 40% of crashes physically impossible, and many others less likely. The infrastructure changes we’re advocating for will also make the city safer for pedestrians to navigate and help avoid tragedies such as this year’s.

Join us in showing city officials that there is widespread support for implementing these lanes in order to create a safe, city-wide protected network that serves residents of all ages and abilities.

We look forward to seeing you tonight!

Rally for Safer Bike Lanes on Wed Oct 17, City Hall, 6pm

From the Email:

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160 times.

That’s how many times each year first responders are called to a crash involving a person on a bike being struck by a car, according to Cambridge Police Department data.

That’s 160 times too many.

One more number for you: three. That is how many people have died walking on Cambridge streets this year, all within a mile of City Hall.

Cambridge Bicycle Safety invites you to join us at City Hall next Wednesday, October 17 from 6:00 – 7:00 pm for our most important event of the year. We are launching our petition campaign to complete the city-wide network of protected bike lanes in five years by putting 160 bikes on the Cambridge City Hall lawn. One for every crash. Meet people from all walks of life in Cambridge who bike and walk, hear their stories, and show city officials your support for safer streets. Please bring your bike and bike lights!

A citywide network of protected bike lanes would make 40% of crashes physically impossible, and many others less likely. The infrastructure changes we’re advocating for—separated lanes and traffic calming—will also make the city safer for pedestrians and help avoid tragedies such as this year.

The City has recognized the importance of protected bike lanes but is not moving quickly enough to implement them in response to crash data and the recent deaths of bicyclists. There are approximately 20 miles of protected bike lanes specified in the 2015 Bicycle Plan but in the past three years, only 1.2 miles have been built. In addition, there have been several cases of the city not following through on the vision in the Bicycle Plan when it rebuilds streets.

Our petition, which has already been signed by over 1,300 people, calls for:

  • A commitment to build the network by 2023 with a mix of permanent construction and quick-build approaches, installing a minimum of two miles per year.
  • In 2019, the city funds the development of a 25% preliminary design for the complete network.
  • A commitment to comply with the City’s Bicycle Plan whenever a street is reconstructed or improvements are made.

Join us in showing city officials that there is widespread support for implementing these lanes in order to create a safe, city-wide protected network that serves residents of all ages and abilities.

We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday, October 17!

Galen Mook joins MassBike as new executive director

BOSTON (BRAIN) — The  Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition has hired  Galen Mook as the organization’s new executive director. Mook will take over helm of the statewide advocacy organization in July

PeopleForBikes and Bicycle Blue Book collaborate to promote National Trade-in Your Bike Month

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — Bicycle Blue Book and PeopleForBikes are promoting a self-declared National Trade-in Your Bike Month in June. PeopleForBikes recently promoted bike trade-ins on its blog and included Bicycle Blue Book’s directory of retailers who participate in its trade-in program

BRAIN Dealer Tour tastes Kansas’ gravel on its final day

LAWRENCE, Kan. (BRAIN) — Forty-six miles of riding — a good dusty chunk of it on gravel roads — brought the BRAIN Dealer Tour crew to visit two shops Thursday. One store was less than two months old in a tiny town that happens to be along a popular cycling route.

PeopleForBikes rates 480 US cities to determine the best places for bikes

INDIANAPOLIS (BRAIN) — PeopleForBikes recognized and awarded several cities at the second annual PlacesForBikes conference, which wraps up today in this Midwestern city. Through its new program, City Rankings, PeopleForBikes takes a data-driven approach to determine which cities are best for biking, and those that are improving the fastest

Moots and Ibis donate bikes to benefit advocacy and trail building

Each company has offered up a bike to be raffled by regional groups.