Are you planning on embarking on an extended cycling trip or tour; have you prepared yourself for all the possible problems you may face; what if you are injured while you are cycling; would you simply turn around and go home? Here are a few basic tips to help ensure you are fully prepared before you leave, ways to adequately deal with an injury whilst cycling and possible ways to seek compensation if someone else was at fault. Whatever happens, don’t let an injury hinder your ability to have a memorable cycling tour.
Pre-trip preparation tips
Pain, which can ultimately lead to injury, is usually caused by a poor bike fit or improper riding technique. Make sure before you leave that you have your bicycle adjusted specifically for you and that you have a bike helmet. Helmets prevent one of the most common and most serious injuries that can be sustained on a bicycle. Make sure you take all of your paperwork for your medical/health insurance, passport (if necessary) and any other documents essential for your healthcare. If travelling abroad, make sure you read up on the rules of the road and what is expected of you as a cyclist in the areas you will be riding through.
Early warning signs
It is important to be aware of early warning signs that may indicate you are on the road to injury. These commonly include tenderness or soreness of the muscles or joints, swelling, numbness or limited degrees of motion. It is important to treat these issues seriously so they do not lead to larger more serious problems.
If an injury occurs
If you sustain an injury, it may be one that is most commonly associated with cycling, such as problems with the knees, road rash, muscle cramps or back/hip problems. There are also a variety of injuries that you may sustain if you are thrown from your bicycle due to a collision. If you are on a tour, don’t panic, there are steps to take to ensure that you can continue your trip, even if it means taking a day or two off. If the injury feels serious, be sure to seek professional medical help. If it is a reoccurring injury, you may know steps to take in hopes of reducing the pain.
No matter what type of injury you sustain, the same basic steps should be followed to ensure that the problem is remediated.
- Take a break and seek professional help (file a police report if a collision has taken place)
- Double check your bike fit and your equipment to ensure there are no problems
- Treat the injury accordingly (i.e. stretch, ice, bandages, strengthening exercises, taping or using a brace)
- Take a few days off from cycling, if necessary and rest up at a hotel
- Listen to your body, if it is too painful to continue don’t push yourself too hard
If the injury is caused by a collision of some kind, make sure you report the incident to the police immediately and visit a doctor. Make sure you get contact information from all the parties involved, including any witnesses to the collision. There are many legal professionals who specialize in these types of accidents, such as auto accident attorney Gary Martin Hays. Seeking their advice will save you a lot of heartache in the long-term.
Compensation for your injury
There are a variety of hotlines you can contact after being injured in a cycling accident. Many of them offer a free consultation regarding what steps to take when filing claims and pursuing compensation. Your best bet is to call one of these hotlines or seek the help of a professional auto accident attorney. Make sure that whatever you decide you do not put it off, file a claim immediately. Don’t be hesitant about making that call; you deserve to be compensated for your injury.