When operating any type of vehicle, it’s important to communicate with other road-users around you. As a bicyclist, communication is essential to keeping your vulnerability to a minimum.
Looking back is an extremely important skill that is used to communicate with vehicles approaching from the rear.
When utilizing this basic biking skill, looking back:
- Allows you to monitor the traffic behind you
- Causes you to sit up more, alerting motorists of a potential change
- Alerts vehicles behind you that you might change your path
- Allows you to make eye contact with the motorist behind you
- Triggers a response from motorists to slow down to allow you to merge
Practice Looking Back technique:
- Ride with 1 Hand – practice riding with your left hand on your hip.
- Look back and Go Straight – pick up a little speed and look back while going straight. One-handed riding allows you to open up your body and not turn the handlebars.
- Use your Hand Signal – from this position you can use a hand signal to indicate a merge.
This technique truly makes difficult traffic merges easy.