“Is that thing a bike?” “That’s cool!” “Looks like fun!” These are the comments I get when I ride. The answer to all these is yes, mostly at least. Behold my handcycle. It’s not exactly Paralympic ready, but it is a nice neighborhood machine.
The hill is the entrance to my community in Central Florida. You didn’t know there were hills in Florida, did you? Well there are, and I’ve not tried this hill going up or down. That is why I’m still alive to write this.
The bike is great fun and exercise, and I’ve had it over 19 years. We keep it dry and in the garage where it takes about as much space as if we had a Mini Cooper. It looks black, but in the sun the deep forest green appears. There are 7 speeds courtesy of an English gear system the same as on the 3 or 7 speed bicycles. There is a classic coaster brake applied by pulling backward on the handles.
I am not one to take chances with my posterior, and it has a Stimulite sport cushion.
How do I manage riding with my Multiple Sclerosis? Not well, I am sorry to say. Most days in the summer it will rest in the garage. I hydrate before going out, take a large water bottle with me, and hydrate when I get back. Loose, light colored clothing, usually cotton. What about the helmet? I will never suggest riding without a helmet and I wear it every time I can. If the temp is just too hot, and I’m going slowly at a time with no traffic, I’ll just wear a hat. It’s not a good idea.
The Paralympics are coming up! It’s no secret that I am a huge admirer of every Paralympian. The ones who earn gold and the ones who come in last. All are better than me. There will be coverage online despite minimal on TV (unless you like to stay up between 1 and 5 AM). There will be all kinds of handcycles, tandems, and racing chairs. We can do this at home. No closed course. No professional driver disclaimers. If you don’t have something like this, you might want to check it out.
Happy and safe riding, y’all! Thank you for stopping by. I’d love to hear your comments or answer any questions. You are super – yes, I’m talking to YOU.
Picture on left is George sitting on a 3 wheeled handcycle. It is large and has 24 inch wheels. Picture on the right is a very steep hill lined with palm trees on both sides.