September 29, 2020 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Consider Coordinating Your Own Cycling: Cycling for Everyone Column

The second CicLAvia was held near downtown Los Angeles on April 10. This celebration of cycling in urban spaces – usually dominated by autos – was a great success. With a group of some 100,000 cyclists, ranging from kids with training wheels to lycra-clad racer types, explored 15 miles of car-free streets.

This event — you cannot really call it an organized ride, since it has no start, no finish, and no real goals except to cycle in car-free streets — had some wonderful side effects, including helping change the mind of former anti-cycling LA Times columnist Sandy Banks. In her April 12 column, she wrote that CycLAvia showed her “a Los Angeles I felt proud to be part of.”

But CicLAvia is a three-time a year event, and while it’s wonderful, what about cycling on a day-to-day basis? Here’s a suggestion: consider making your own miniature, personalized version of it, right here on the streets of Santa Monica. For many, riding a bike in traffic is very intimidating, especially if you aren’t used to it. What CicLAvia gives a person is a chance to ride in a car-free, supportive environment. With some care, you can duplicate some of the event’s power.

Why not gather a few friends or family members and go ride a beautiful route locally? By doing rides with friends or family members on a well-chosen route, you will get the essential social support that makes cycling on the road seem less scary. Such rides will help you to graduate to more challenging trips by yourself for shopping, yoga, or trips to the bank, or even just to get a quick, hassle-free workout right outside your own front door.

As far as routes go, Santa Monica has many. An evening jaunt heading north of the beach bike path with friends can give you a good start, and a completely car-free one. But there are other routes too. Ocean Avenue has extensive bike lanes, as does San Vicente Boulevard. The residential streets south of San Vicente and north of Montana, between Lincoln and 26th Street have beautiful greenery, houses, and few cars, even though there are no bike paths. By starting out with an easy cycling workout on such streets in like-minded company, you will become more comfortable on your bike on the street, and can move on to riding for either exercise or practical reasons on your own.

The wonder of cycling is that it can help strengthen not just the rider’s heart, lungs, and muscles, but also a communal identity – the social glue that makes communities healthier. While driving around in two-ton autos is convenient given our current infrastructure, as numerous city planners have pointed out, it tends to isolate people, breaking them up into isolated individuals who have little community feeling. Through your own private cycling events, you can make your community, your Santa Monica, a city with a stronger and healthier identity, and a safer place for you, your children, and everyone.

For more information about cycling, visit smspoke.org, the website of Santa Monica Spoke, a local bicycle advocacy group.

in Health
Related Posts

Edify TV: National Women’s Health and Fitness Day!

September 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

September 30th marks National Women’s Health and Fitness Day, Here are a few fun activities to try out in celebration...

COVID-19 Could Have Been in Area as Early as Last December

September 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

UCLA study reports significant increase in coughs and acute respiratory failure prior to first official cases of COVID-19 By Sam...

County Walks Back Trick or Treating Ban

September 9, 2020

September 9, 2020

Department of Public Health now says trick or treating not recommended By Sam Catanzaro County health officials have walked back...

Trick nor Treat: LA County Bans Door to Door Trick or Treating

September 9, 2020

September 9, 2020

Update: the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has revised its Halloween guidelines. Previously, as reported below, officials planned...

Edify TV: LA County Salons Given Green Light

September 8, 2020

September 8, 2020

Barbershops and hair salons in Los Angeles County have been given the green light to reopen with restrictions in place...

UCLA Searching for COVID-19 Vaccine Volunteers

September 8, 2020

September 8, 2020

Editor’s note: this AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 trial is on temporary hold while the company looks into whether a patient involved in...

Ahead of Labor Day County Warns COVID-19 Progress Could Be Hampered

September 1, 2020

September 1, 2020

Seven-day positivity rate currently below 5 percent By Sam Catanzaro Despite optimism regarding COVID-19 transmission rates, ahead of Labor Day...

New Santa Monica Senior Affordable Housing

September 1, 2020

September 1, 2020

Greenway Meadows development nears completion A new development near completion in Santa Monica will provide 38 apartments to low-income seniors...

Montalvo on Montana’s ‘Boos Boos LA’ Cotton Masks

September 1, 2020

September 1, 2020

By Staff Writer In light of the growing need for personal protection equipment, a local company is getting creative with...

County Can ‘Think About’ Reopening Schools, Businesses if Transmission Rates Hold

August 25, 2020

August 25, 2020

Community spread still needs to decrease, officials say By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles County’s head of public health noted at...

My Dog Day of Summer

August 24, 2020

August 24, 2020

I usually don’t sweat the news about temperatures.  I live on the Westside, close to the Pacific Ocean, and it...

Column: How to Play it Safe to Prevent Deadly Heat Exhaustion

August 24, 2020

August 24, 2020

By Shawn McCann  As the Southland region broils in a summer heatwave, the coronavirus pandemic has created additional concern for...

Conscious Human Medicine Helping Santa Monica Residents Reverse Chronic Disease and Boost Health

August 20, 2020

August 20, 2020

By Staff Writer When co-founders Dr. Mahboubeh Hashemi and Dr. Matthew Cavaiola started their practice, Conscious Human Medicine, they had...

LAUSD Announces Plans to Test and Contact Trace All Students and Staff

August 18, 2020

August 18, 2020

By Chad Winthrop The nation’s second-largest public school system will provide COVID-19 tests and contact tracing for all Los Angeles...

County Surpasses Somber Milestone of 5,000 COVID-19 Deaths

August 11, 2020

August 11, 2020

Hospitalizations continue to decline By Sam Catanzaro L.A. County reached a somber milestone Tuesday of over 5,000 COVID- 19 deaths....