Summer is the perfect time to get your bike out of the shed and explore the beautiful cycling paths and routes across the UK. But as the days get brighter and hotter, you must make sure you stay cool and safe on your ride, which is why we’ve compiled a list of 7 essential cycling items you need this summer.
1.Helmet and cap
Ensuring you have a strong helmet is without a doubt the most important item, and during the summer months, you want to choose a helmet that is lightweight, aero and well ventilated. This is because keeping a cool head is vital during hot days, where there is a risk of overheating.
The B'Twin Aerofit 900 road cycling helmet is a great choice, constructed using In-Mold moulding technology to ensure that it's both lightweight, durable and structurally secure for the rider.
You will also need a cycling cap which sits under your helmet to keep the sun out of your eyes. They also give good UV protection for those not blessed with a full head of hair. Opt for a thin, mesh cap in the summer months, such as the RoadR 520 Ultralight cycling cap - made from an extremely light synthetic fabric that dries quickly, making it comfortable to wear even in hot weather.
2. Water bottle
Another essential item for your summer ride is of course, a water bottle. It can be surprising just how much you’ll need to drink to stay hydrated on a summer ride – especially when you’re working hard in the heat.
There’s nothing worse than running out of water mid-ride when you desperately need it, so it’s worth fitting an extra bottle cage – most frames have room for at least two bottle cages
The Hydro-Pro Water Bottles are a good choice, with a fast-flow super-soft silicone nozzle designed to offer athletes & adventurers the very best.
3. Bike lock
If you’re planning on stopping for a cake and coffee, make sure you have a bike lock with you, even if you’re stopping for just a few minutes. The last thing you want is to be stuck miles from home with no bike.
For maximum security, take a look at the Oxford Alarm-D Pro Duo Bike Lock, featuring a chunky 1.2 metre looped cable, to help extend its reach and to secure both wheels and frame. It also has a 120db weatherproof movement and shock activated alarm which will scare off any would-be bike thief.
Cycling in bright sunny weather is not only seriously uncomfortable, but it is also dangerous as it can hinder your eyesight. Sunglasses also help to keep bugs, debris and dirt from getting into your eyes.
Any sport specific or running sunglasses will do, as long as they are protective and will stay on your face.
The dhb UltraLite Sunglasses are a top (affordable) choice, providing 100% UVA and UVB protection and are made from a hydrophobic coating which helps repel sweat and water. Their venting feature also prevents the lenses from steaming up and rubber grippers on the arms keep the frames firmly in place, no matter how bumpy the terrain is.
5. Bike tyre repair kit
It is crucial to have a bike tyre repair kit on you, so that in the unfortunate event of a puncture, you can fix it mid ride.
The LifeLine Puncture Repair Kit will do the job nicely, containing six repair patches, a small piece of abrasive paper and vulcanising fluid - everything you need to repair a punctured inner tube.
6. Summer cycling jersey
As well as your head, it’s important you keep your body cool too. Lightweight, short-sleeve jerseys are the best option for summer cycling, and you should be opting for jerseys with mesh panels for ventilation. A mesh construction allows for a much more effective moisture wicking than regular jerseys making it perfect for when things get hot under the collar.
The Rapha Pro Team Aero jersey is a great fitting highly technical, very comfortable piece of kit for those warm summer rides. It features a smooth front panel and textured rear with dimpled arms and shoulders. It's a close fit too, without being constructive or riding up.
7. Lightweight waterproof jacket
Summer doesn’t always mean dry rides, especially here in the UK, so it’s wise to get yourself a lightweight, waterproof jacket for when the weather isn’t guaranteed.
The smart-looking Decathlon Triban RC500 jacket has a waterproof, breathable, stretchy membrane for maximum comfort when riding in the rain. The roll-up saddle flap also protects from splashes, letting you ride comfortably in wet or windy weather.
With a waterproof rating of 8,000mm, it isn’t the best option for truly horrendous conditions, but for summer showers and commutes it’s perfectly substantial.
Written by Kate, on behalf of Mackadams.