Cycling has been a go-to for a lot of Filipinos throughout this pandemic, be it for commuting or simply for leisure and exercise. The sheer number of cyclists on the road these days is proof of that.
In response to this, Ayala Land (ALI) has launched a responsible biking program in Nuvali. The company put up signage and right-of-way markers called ‘sharrows’ on shared roadway lanes. ALI also installed amenities like free-use bike racks and a bike-repair station. It activated a post-crash emergency response service for cyclists in the area, too.
ALI seeks to promote the safety and well-being of the biking community, pedestrians, and motorists alike through this program. It will eventually be rolled out across Ayala Land Estates in the future, including Vermosa in Cavite and Arca South in Taguig.
As part of the program, ALI also sought advice about safe and responsible biking from notable members of the community. We know a lot of you will find them useful, so we’ve included a few of them below.
What to prepare before a ride
“Regardless of where you’re going—planned or not—make sure that you have the proper mindset to ride. Safe riding is not only about knowing your limits in terms of power or endurance—safe riding starts with situational awareness,” said Camp N operational manager Mon Jocson.
Jocson added that riders should prep gear that will provide protection and at the same time ensure proper performance. Eyewear should be made of flexible material, gloves should improve grip, and shoes should give traction.
“Important things to bring during a ride are water, a multi-tool, patch kit, tire levers, money, and cell phone,” added Cycling Zone Enterprises managing partner Jingo Hervas. “For gear, the most important thing is the helmet. One should never, ever ride without one.”
Important rules and hand signals to remember
“When biking, do it in a single file; follow traffic signals and signs,” said mountain biking and running enthusiast Eduard Rivera. “Remember the basic hand signals such as stop, turning left or right, and pointing to road hazards such as potholes and rocks.”
“My personal rule is to ride safely and keep everyone else along the way safe! Being on a bike does not exempt anybody from the existing traffic rules and regulations,” furthered Xikad Cycling Club member Erlan Olavere. “It’s also safe to point hazards like potholes to fellow riders. Just ride defensively and never be an obstruction. Always give way, particularly to pedestrians.
Tips for sharing the road
“Awareness is key. Know your surroundings thru sight, smell, feel, and hearing. Stay visible and in a single file,” shared Dirt School Philippines co-founder Miguel Lopez. “If you need to pass a slower rider, you should call his attention if you are overtaking on the left. Slower riders should give way to faster riders. Always assume that you are not seen by others, so always make sure to be seen or heard out on the road. Make sure to follow road safety and LGU rules for cyclists.”
Health and fitness enthusiast Miko de los Reyes also emphasized the importance of promoting biker education, citing how many cyclists may not be aware of proper road etiquette.
Biker behavior that should be promoted in biking communities like Nuvali
“Most of the time, a rider forgets to be mindful of other road users or the surroundings,” said Bikes for the Philippines Board of Directors and Professional Mountain Bike Instructors Association coach Bans Mendoza. “Reaction on the bike is important and dependent on what is happening around you to avoid being in an accident or causing an accident. It is important to be mindful.”
ALI’s press release reads: “Through these insights from the point of view of personalities from the biking community, we can explore and share a deeper understanding of road sharing and road etiquette necessary in gearing towards safe and responsible biking. Ayala Land aims for bikers to practice these in their own ways in their own cities, and eventually help them to encourage others to practice smart biking.”
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