Have you ever ridden a tandem bike? If you have, you can easily understand its growing popularity among cyclists who are looking for fun and fast cycling. Notwithstanding, that hardcore cyclists turn up their nose on tandem bike, the bike has definitely come to stay going by the favorable reviews it receives from users. What is the reason for this remarkable popularity and demand for the bikes, considering the fact that it almost went extinct in 1970s?
Why is tandem bike becoming a preferred choice for cyclists? Why is it taking over the cycling sector to the extent of taking the center stage held by solo bike?
Tandem bike has many advantages over solo bike and brings a completely new dimension to cycling. Not only has it introduce a new concept of cycling, you can actually have fun cycling without slacking your pace.
People get to smile often while on tandem, hence removing the air of seriousness attendant with cycling. Unlike the single bike, tandem bike promotes togetherness.
It is a great way of starting up conversation and an attention grabber any day, any time as it makes you stand out from the crowd. Tandem bike also promotes family togetherness/bonding. Equally important is that tandem bike riding is a smooth and effective way of introducing your kids to cycling.
A tandem needs two riders popularly known as captain and the stoker. The captain mounts the front seat and carries the greater responsibility of seeing that all goes well with the team while the stoker seating at the rear seat serves as the support staff. His job is to see that the captain gets all the help he needs. With its comeback, it has rekindled social life and bonding.
Why use a tandem bike
As stated earlier a tandem bike has a lot of advantages and benefits for users. It is design in such a way that it adequately meets the need of many neglected cycling fans. People denied the pleasure of cycling because of one situation or the other can now enjoy cycling. So what makes a tandem bike striking?
It is an established fact that a tandem bike is faster than a solo/single bike.
Studies have shown that a tandem is 50% faster than a solo bike .This is because it is lighter in weight and has the power of two riders in one bike. It has the advantage of being a bike with two wheels and four set legs. This increases the power output as against a solo bike that has only one rider. If you are the type that enjoys the sensation of high speed cycling, then a tandem bike is what you need.
It is a fun way of cycling, as you must have a partner with you on a tandem bike. This avails you of such benefits such as:
Chatting, singing if you so wish and generally doing things together all through the ride. It helps alleviates the strain of cycling for hours.
You can take picture without stopping. The stoker who serves as support staff can easily take the pictures that will serve as memoirs.
It eliminates fear, especially if you do not have the great cycling skills. A tandem offers you the opportunity to team up with a cycling expert and coast along on his expertise while he takes the major brunt of the ride for you.
This is the utmost benefit you can derive in using a tandem bike. Solo bikes enhance individualism and can easily reduce bonding and conversation. Tandem encourages and fosters social and family life. Tandem cycling without a captain and stoker is not possible. Spouses who due to busy work schedule have little or no time together can easily amend such a situation by embarking on tandem ride frequently. Since tandem cycling involves two cyclists in one bike, this leads to-
Mutual sharing, which is a great attribute for stable marriage or relationship.
Rekindles /strengthens romance and intimacy in couples. Tandem cycling encourages partners to pull their weights for the success of the team. No one is a passive partaker, the stoker with less cycling skill can do little things as rubbing the captain’s back, give him of food and water, make encouraging remarks,etc. This promotes oneness and shows I care attitude. This can easily be the embers with which a new relationship is build or strengthen ones that are on the verge of cracking or deepen an already strong relationship.
It helps partner understand each other non-verbal vibes. Partners that have ridden together over time can easily decipher each other body language and easily interpret what the other wants. This is due to the riding technique involved in tandem cycling.
Since the two are riding together ,the anxiety over each other safety in a busy, or rough terrain or foreign city is non- existence. With the two on a tandem, they are able to watch each other’s back.
Tandem bike make every mile a joint experience that you two can easily relieve and can serve as a great bedtime stories for your grand children as well.
It makes cycling a pleasurable experience
Cycling a tandem bike is a pure delight and remarkable experience. An experience you will not mind repeating over and again. Simply for the obvious reasons that:
A tandem eliminates the issue of having to lower you pace in order for your not so skilled partner to catch up with you.
Secondly, the not so skilled cycling partner will not have to struggle to catch up with the faster rider as is the case in solo bike cycling. This advantage makes a tandem bike a pure cyclist’s delight. You can ride with your partner in one bike even if you have different cycling abilities.
Partners cycling in one bike complement one another, hence supply what the other lacks. This takes cycling to another new level much to the delight of those who are passionate about cycling but do not trust their skills.
They are great for work out. You can easily enjoy the pleasure of working out with you partner if you are not a work out enthusiast. The best part is this is an added value, which comes with tandem bikes. You get to enjoy the pleasure of cycling without distraction whilst overcoming your lack of enthusiasm for work out.
Great for flat terrains and downhill
Tandem bikes are good wind resistant bikes. A constant source of worry for solo bike cyclists has been the wind. With tandem, you have the power out put of two riders in one bike, pulling their strength together. This makes a tandem best for downhill and flat roads. If you are an outdoor person, a tandem bike is a good way of enjoying such terrains.
It is also a good way of enjoying the scenery early in the morning or at sunset. You can easily grab a beer or two from stores, commute to work without worrying about rush hours or traffic flow.
It is a great way for parent and child to bond, especially for busy dad.
A trip on a tandem with your child as your stoker is an excellent way of bridging the gulf your busy work schedule is creating between you and your child.
It creates an opportunity to introduce the act of cycling to your child in a non- threatening and natural way. Your child can easily learn the act of cycling and safety techniques directly from you. Family with long history of cycling can instill such passion and desire in younger generation early in life.
It helps parents to share cycling at adult speed and distance with their kids, without worrying over their safety in rough terrains and ability to cope with the strain of cycling over long distance.
Cycling on a tandem bike with your child is an enduring and charming sight. It usually elicits smiles, thumb ups, and endearing comments from people. This leaves a positive impact on the child.
It helps build your child’s confidence and trust in your abilities. His estimation and regards for you will certainly go a notch higher. This makes cycling a truly satisfying family activity.
It is a great way for the visual impaired to enjoy the pleasures of cycling
For the visual impaired cycling enthusiasts, tandem bike offers a great opportunity to live their dreams of enjoying a pleasurable cycling without the limitation placed on them by disability. By collaborating with a partner with 2020 vision as his captain, he easily enjoys the benefits that come with cycling. This promotes feeling of usefulness and sense of belonging in them. With the comeback of tandem riding many physically challenged cycling enthusiasts are quickly cultivating this trait to their benefits.
Still looking reasons why use a tandem bike? Take a looking at the following:
It is a great way to build and hone leadership and followership skills
Tandem riding automatically confers and hones leadership and followership skills on users. If you are short on these attributes, cycling especially on a tandem is a good way of building these qualities.
Tandem cycling usually test the leadership skills of the captain and that of a stoker as a good follower. If you were lacking in these areas by the time you through with your ride, you would have definitely learned a thing or two on leadership and followership.
You learn how to carry people along, watch out for the interest of another and such stuff. The stoker learns how to be a good follower and entrusting the reign of control to another person. This will greatly enhanced your performance on your next ride and positively rub off in your attitude to life generally.
Great for curbing panic attacks
It is a fantastic way of gently easing people that suffer from panic attacks into the act of cycling. There are people who cannot handle a busy terrain or crowded area without having panic attacks.
For such people a solo ride is out of the way because of safety and even if they ride in the company of other solo cyclists, they end dragging others down.
People in such situation, that are passionate about cycling, a tandem bike is an effective and efficient option as the sufferer can easily rely on his captain’s confidence without breaking the pace until he gets his bearing back.
This is another reason to use a tandem bike for cycling. You do not need to shout out instruction to one another, as is the case with solo or single bikes. You can use the quite atmosphere for stargazing and meditation.
It is a great way to ease out the hassles and bustles of life off your shoulder for the moment. Let the quite scenery wash over you.
It also eliminates the need for constant repetition of instruction over a distance before your partner understands it. The frustration that comes with the inability of your partner interpreting your instruction is eliminated in tandem. The tendency to lash out or scold you partner are outdated. It encourages non-verbal communication between partners on a ride.
It has health benefits
A tandem bike has many health benefits for users. There are varied physiological effects of cycling on a tandem. Medical studies have proved that it offers a greater health benefits than single bike does.
There is evidence to support that cycling on a tandem lowers physiological stress than a solo bike. Tandem cyclists burn calories faster than solo bike cyclists.
This is due to the fact cycling on a tandem; you can run faster and non- stop for hours. The stoker tackles issues such as taking of pictures, map reading, drinks and food; consequently, the captain navigates the bike for hours without stopping.
These are the 10 reasons why to use a tandem bike for cycling. It is an experience worth trying. Why not take the bull by the horn, buy a tandem bike , and experience cycling in another dimension.