Tandem Bicycles are niche. Non-tandemers look at tandems as if they are a novelty, or something that reminds them of a picnic, but not anything for them to try or do. I have to admit, it took me a minute before I even thought about riding a tandem. I had the easy excuse of “I don’t know where to find one to ride.” My husband owns a bicycle shop (and has now for 10 years), and they have a tandem. Still I gave excuses. It’s true, I’ve never ridden on a tandem.
It wasn’t until my husband invented a bar that connects two bicycles, front to back to form a tandem, I would have never really known the experience of riding tandem. Now, I’m hooked! This bar, buddybar as it is named, is essentially the same concept as a tandem bicycle, but is different than a classic tandem bicycle in some ways:
- You use two bikes to connect the bar
- It is the fraction of the cost of a tandem bicycle
- It weighs 3 pounds – it’s lightweight and portable, making it easy to travel with
- You can pedal independently
- It works with most types of bicycles – you don’t have to adjust the bikes as you would with a tandem bicycle to accommodate different height riders
- Depending on what bikes you use, you can have 4 brakes instead of two
- It doesn’t matter who rides in front or back
- The connector pieces stay in place on the bikes, and the bar quickly connects/disconnects in seconds
We also found the stronger rider doesn’t have to ride up front – in a matter of fact, it works better if the stronger rider is in the stoker position. We discovered this when riding together and my husband was instructing me on cadence and shifting gears. It also helped me with climbing and descending as I was able to “feel” the timing, as well as get that extra push needed lacking in some strength to train and get up the hills. I love to have it when we go on “drop” rides because otherwise, I’d be left behind for sure.
Buddybar is also helpful when riding with our 10 year old and 6 year old – when we are in the back, we can instruct them and they told us how empowered they feel to be the rider up front. We also can go on longer rides to help push them along when it’s farther than they are used to going.
Buddybar has many different benefits with all sorts of riders. It makes a great training, an everyone-can-ride-no-one-left-behind tool, and even helpful in rehabilitation or those with disabilities.
Buddybar is the gateway for everyone to be able to tandem and gets rid of all the excuses of not riding a tandem. Our mission for buddybar is to “connect” people together through cycling, getting them outdoors and enjoying a healthy lifestyle.
We’ve got some rides coming up and will post more articles on our adventures with buddybar. Be on the lookout! Ride…together!
For more information on buddybar, go to www.buddybar.net or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For an exclusive discounted rate for Tandem Club of America readers, use code TCA30OFF for 30% off plus free shipping.