Leading a ride for Stourbridge Cycling Club

These guidelines are specifically for ride leaders and broadly follow advice from Cycling UK.

Becoming a ride leader for club runs

  • You must be an experienced rider.
  • Preferably holding a current first aid certificate. (SCC regularly run first aid courses free to members).
  • DBS clearance preferred when young riders are out but otherwise not essential.
  • Must be capable of making quick decisions.
  • Must have a knowledge of the local road network and be able to put together a gpx route and to distribute it.
  • Must be capable of completing the advertised distance at the advertised speed.
  • Must be able to measure everybody’s capabilities.
  • Must be confident in speaking to riders who may be disrupting the ride and be able to offer advice in a positive manner and explain why their actions are an issue

Before the ride

  • Know what type of ride it will be club run or bash (training ride) regular route or new route. Drop, limited drop or no drop. Make sure this is communicated clearly in the WhatsApp message
  • Work out a route the group is likely to enjoy, taking into account: distance; terrain; traffic; refreshments; toilets; weather; ability of the riders; and any other factors.
  • Be prepared to vary the ride if any of these change.
  • Decide how you will navigate: GPS, maps, local knowledge, or a combination of all of these.
  • Advertise your ride in the SCC WhatsApp chat – don’t forget to include: the meeting time and place; the approximate distance and pace; likely return time.
  • Have someone you can assign ride leader if you are unable to continue for whatever reason

Leading the ride

  • Find out the names of anybody on the ride that you do not know. Make a note of their emergency contact details. If they are members, we will have their details but the leader may want them in case anybody is lost.
  • Enlist the help of any experienced riders to keep an eye on newer ones; act as backmarkers.
  • Make sure your helpers understand the requirement to advise if riders are dropping. Also advise the group they should be mindful of riders dropping and need to communicate this up through the group to the ride leader as soon as soon as it happens.
  • If it is a drop or limited drop ride explain this clearly and ensure riders are comfortable with this and understand what this means. For example, a limited drop ride may ease up or stop for a certain time (normally 30 secs to 2 mins) over hills to allow riders time to get back on. However if riders are clearly out of their depth it won’t wait for them. Make it clear where the ride will ease up /stop.
  • Count the riders and keep an eye out for anybody missing at certain points.
  • Point out any likely hazards in advance. In the event of a collision or other incident on the ride, please complete an Accident/Incident Report form as soon as possible.
  • Avoid blocking roads and trails – choose stopping points carefully.
  • Keep the ride flowing smoothly but do stop occasionally and give stragglers a rest before restarting.
  • You have a duty of care to the riders and the public, so if you think someone may endanger themselves or others, have a quiet word; if their behaviour persists, you are entitled to ask them to leave the ride.
  • You should lead by example and remain courteous and considerate to all road users and fellow riders.
  • Ensure anyone who wishes to leave the ride is capable of making their own way home.

Essential items:

  • Map or GPS unit
  • Selection of small tools, inner tubes, tyre levers, chain tool/ quick link
  • Mobile phone.
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