With limited options for entertainment and the need to social distance, you may have found outdoor activities such as biking make their way into your daily routine. Luckily for its residents, Dayton is home to the country’s largest network of paved trails.
The spacious Miami Valley Trail Network is a great place to get exercise while keeping your distance from others. Though the risk in enjoying this activity is relatively low as far as the pandemic goes, it’s still crucial riders take note of other safety measures.
“Each year we see head injuries, collar bone and wrist fractures, and major scrapes due to accidents on pavement,” says Nancy Pook, MD, medical director of the Emergency Department at Kettering Medical Center. “Risk of injury increases at an accelerated speed, on inclines, and near traffic, so it’s important to know how to stay safe while having fun.”
Before you head out, take steps to reduce your risk of injury. Follow these tips to stay out of harm’s way and avoid having an emergency:
Wear a properly fitted helmet
Helmets reduce the risk of severe and long-term head and brain injuries in the event of a crash or accident. Always wear a properly fitted helmet—even if you only plan on riding for a few minutes or a short distance.
Helmets for biking, in-line skating, and skateboarding are all made differently, so get the right one for your activity.
Helmets should be age-appropriate, well-maintained, and worn consistently and correctly. Most helmets are designed to withstand minor dumps or scrapes, but once it’s been through a hard hit or becomes cracked, it’s time for a new one.
Look for one approved by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Get the right fit for your equipment
Make sure equipment fits and is the right size for you or your kids.
Check that everything works
Inspect your equipment before every ride.
Always dress for success
In the event of an emergency, call 911 or get to the nearest emergency center. To find an Emergency Department near you, check out our list of Emergency Locations.