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Effective Cycling Paperback – April 20, 2012
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John Forester's Effective Cycling continues and expands his mission to make bicycling easy, enjoyable, rewarding and responsible. He recognizes that most US authorities put cyclists into an inferior status, and therefore into a dilemma, and conveys to them the attitude and the rules with which they can be appreciated and responsible road users. This book should be read by all cyclists, and especially by all 'authorities.'(David Gordon Wilson, MIT Mechanical Engineering; author of Bicycling Science)
I have used previous editions of Effective Cycling as my go-to source for some 35 years. It is comprehensive, based on irrefutable logic and scientific data, and easily understandable.(Bill Hoffman, former Director, League of American Bicyclists)
As a lifelong bicyclist, I didn't realize my eyes were wide shut with respect to bicycling matters until I first read Effective Cycling, fourth edition, in 1988 at age 30. John Forester's seminal, expansive, and tireless work in educating bicyclists and protecting the rights of bicyclists as drivers of vehicles has been incalculably valuable to me and countless thousands of others who pedal for fun and utility.(Wayne Pein, Bicycling Matters)
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Top Customer Reviews
But as I began to incorporate these subtle changes in my own riding the results were amazing. My relationship with car drivers completely changed. Instead of interacting with them once in a while -- only when necessary -- I became an integrated participant with the rest of traffic.
It is impossible to explain in words how just subtle lane positioning changes, and a new attitude, can make such a radical difference in one's cycling experience in traffic. But consider what Forester conveys in this simple statement: "Between intersections, position yourself according to speed; at intersections, position yourself according to destination". You may think you do this already, but based on the fact that I almost never see any cyclists do this consistently, I can almost assure you that you don't. And I'm not talking about kids and "recreational cyclists". I'm talking about experienced commuters, and experienced club riders and racers. Only a very small percentages of cyclists actually behave like a (slow) vehicle driver consistently. Much of the time on the road is spent in space "left over" by motorists, riding too far to the right, not positioning at intersections according to destination (THINK about what that means), etc. etc.Read more ›
It bothers me that Forester complains about others using unsubstantiated, anecdotal evidence, because he uses plenty himself. For one example, his brief discussion of recumbent bicycles is so absurd that it should have been left out. His double-standards regarding fact vs. opinion and logic vs. emotion greatly undermine his arguments.
That said, a reader with a critical eye and a tolerance for hot air can separate the wheat from the chaff.
His advice about equipment, diet, and the other mechanics of bicycling needs to be taken somewhat lightly. Even though this is a "second edition", much of the material in the book is considerably older. On the other hand, the fundamentals of safety (visibility, lighting, traction, lane placement, risk factors) are invariant over time.
Mr. Forester has a definite axe to grind, and this book does it quite effectively. He adds a definite splash of common sense to the fine technique of road riding: don't let other vehicles take your lane away from you, don't surprise them, safety always first, slower traffic keeps right. The safest way to bicycle on the road is not necessarily the one that educators, legislators, or law enforcement officers think it is.
This book is a must-read for any cyclist who ever shares the road with a motor vehicle.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
No one has been both a greater proponent and simultaneously, the greatest impediment to the acceptance of cycling as a legitimate means of transportation, and cyclists as a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Benn Pamphleteer
Forester is the definitive text on modern bicycle riding. Sections on all aspects of the subject, including equipment, maintenance, and riding techniques. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Robert W. Hermanson
Great read. Anyone who uses a bicycle should keep this as their bible!Published 5 months ago by Scott Slusser
Was hoping this would help my pre-teen daughter ride safer, but she did not get much out of this.Published 14 months ago by Barry G. Allen
The book is the encyclopedia of bike riding. Thank you. I needed this.Published 14 months ago by ljoyce
Great book. Helped me learn to ride in traffic properly and made me the knowledgable rider among my friends. Good stuff.Published 15 months ago by William Schultz