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Cycling and music

Old 03-23-21, 06:02 AM
  #101  
WhyFi
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Originally Posted by MattTheHat View Post
I use a Varia Radar unit sending alerts to my Elemnt Roam. Itís interesting an all, but I still donít really ride any differently than before I had it. I just try to ride straight.
With the Varia, I ride in the passenger side tire track more often than I would, otherwise. Even on a road with a broad shoulder, the tire track is cleaner, smoother and the positioning make me more visible. The Varia alert gives me enough time to move over, even on 55MPH roads, and (speculation) I think that seeing me move over for them makes drivers more accommodating to me. I've certainly had fewer close passes since getting the Varia, regardless, and I'm not sure that the reactive light pattern can be solely credited for that.
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Old 03-23-21, 06:26 AM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by dkatz1 View Post
I've been a musician for 55 years or so, and have always loved listening to huge variety of music. I would NEVER listen while riding my bike, though I gave it a try a few times around 15 years ago.
It ISN'T safe.
But along with that: even when I tried "real" headhpones instead of ear buds (I HATE ear buds) I found it to be a crappy listening experience. If I listen: I want good sound quality. And MOST of all: to me, one of the great things in cycling is it gets my away from technology and non-technology, and gives me a chance to be a alone with my own thoughts. I like the music that is often playing in my head (I'm a composer).
I like being able to hear the world go by when I'm riding, NOT just because I'm safer that way.
I think way too many people (not just cyclists) in our world don't seem to know how to just be with themselves. Cycling, for me is so great: i just don't need anything to pump me up, entertain or distract me.
Perhaps it isnít safe FOR YOU. Literally millions manage it throughout the world each day.

Iím glad you enjoy hearing the world go by when youíre riding. I enjoy that too...for about an hour. And then I have about another 13 hours per week of riding when I enjoy listening to music.

As far as your worry about others ďnot knowing how to just be with themselvesĒ? Thatís just a weird statement. One that I donít understand, especially coming from a composer. Just weird.

ďI just donít need anything to pump me up, entertain or distract me.Ē Okay, neither do I. I CHOSE to listen to music when I ride because...I ENJOY IT. Why does a statement like this come up multiple times in every music while riding thread? Do you only listen to music to pump you up, entertain or distract you? The only time I listen to music without doing something else at the same time is when Iím playing guitar. And thatís not very musical, sadly.

I understand some folks donít feel comfortable riding while listening to music. Thatís fine, and for those people I would never recommend they do it. But it in no way demonstrates itís unsafe for others to do so.
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Old 03-23-21, 06:43 AM
  #103  
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It still amazes me that people think that the way they ride a bike is the one true way of enjoying the activity. Never mind the wide variety of bikes available and the fact that some noodle along while others try to endure as much pain as possible over a given duration.
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Old 03-23-21, 07:34 AM
  #104  
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I get the whole wanting to hear nature thing but riding in the city everyday there isnít much nature. Just annoying cars and sirens and people honking and people yelling and all kinds of noise so for me I play music while riding in the city. If I go to a trail or somewhere thatís not the city then I will not listen to music.
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Old 03-23-21, 01:54 PM
  #105  
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I used to listen to a "Walkman" while riding my bike when I was younger(yea I am that old!). I went through a lot of batteries and I hardly went anywhere without my music.I did not drive a car , just a bike for transportation. With blue tooth ear buds and thousands of songs stored on my iPhone , riding a bike is the one place I don't listen to music now. It's funny how we change, around here it is illegal but I don't think anyone would pull you over for it and that is not the reason I don't. I just feel safer hearing things coming up behind me and I also enjoy the sounds of riding. I am in a more rural area for almost half of my rides so occasionally I can hear a hawk or something . One of my favorite riding albums was the Traveling Wilbury's , I can remember jamming down the highway listening to that album many times . Good memories.
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Old 03-23-21, 04:17 PM
  #106  
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As appealing as listening to music while riding sounds, I would hate to give up being able to judge other people.

Last edited by Kapusta; 03-23-21 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 03-23-21, 04:49 PM
  #107  
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For me, cycling and music don't mix.
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Old 03-23-21, 11:40 PM
  #108  
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My take on this is that listening to music through headphones while cycling is a bad idea. You cannot hear other cyclists over taking you nor can you hear cars approaching from behind you. Best to leave them for when you aren't cycling.
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Old 03-24-21, 06:31 AM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by SpeedyBlueBiker View Post
My take on this is that listening to music through headphones while cycling is a bad idea. You cannot hear other cyclists over taking you nor can you hear cars approaching from behind you. Best to leave them for when you aren't cycling.
Exactly. I normally like to zig-and-******-zag erratically, but I curb that when I hear that someone or something is overtaking me.
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Old 03-24-21, 06:35 AM
  #110  
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Just an FYI that anyone riding without some sort of rear-view cycling mirror while for safety reasons arguing against listening to music while riding, is a ridiculous hypocrite.
Own it.
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Old 03-25-21, 08:04 PM
  #111  
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For many many years I never listened to anything while riding. Then I started listening to podcasts and audiobooks on rides to help pass the time. I only put one earbud in my right ear and keep volume low. I can hear everything I need to out of left ear and the volume of the right is low enough to not distract. I'm not sure if it's just because I'm listening to talking makes a difference or not; maybe music would be more distracting or loud.
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Old 03-25-21, 11:34 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by ofajen View Post
Can you give an example of somewhere that imposes such a fine? It seems curious. Deaf people can operate motor vehicles and ride bikes. If a region tried to impose that, a deaf person with an impish sense of humor could ride with headphones and then I wonder what the justification for the fine would be.

Otto
NYC. Cops love to screw with cyclists in NYC. Bells are required, can only have one ear but in, lights required at night. You wouldn't think cops would care about this BS but the sit at the bases of all the bridges in Brooklyn and Manhattan looking out for **** like this giving tickets all day long. I speak from experience.
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Old 03-25-21, 11:48 PM
  #113  
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Can the answer just be "it depends"**********

I came got super into cycling as an adult in NYC. After my initial shock of learning to ride in the city I started to listen to music via ear buds commuting to work through Brooklyn and Manhattan. I never felt super in danger but there were a few times I wasn't paying attention and it's also illegal there to have 2 ear buds in while riding. So I switched to a JBL clip on speaker. i loved it. Even then, sometimes I feel like listening to music, sometimes not.
Point is - for me it depends on what kind of riding I'm doing. I live in CT now. If I'm out on a quite gravel trail I probably don't want to listen to anything. But I might bring my speaker just in case. I usually like to just listen to the natural sounds of nothing but sometimes I just like that extra motivation. If I do listen to music out in nature, on a shared trail etc, I try to keep the volume reasonable as to not blast out anyone I might come across.

In the city, if I'm mashing around running errands, commuting to work or whatever on loud, busy city streets, I'm more likely to use my clip on speaker to blast some tunes and jam out. No one in NYC or Hartford is going to complain my bike speaker is too loud while I'm pulling up next to them on a bike. Just like anything, try to measure your safety with the safety and sanity of the folks around you and have a good time while not being a complete *******.
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Old 03-26-21, 09:31 AM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by partyanimal View Post
NYC. Cops love to screw with cyclists in NYC. Bells are required, can only have one ear but in, lights required at night. You wouldn't think cops would care about this BS but the sit at the bases of all the bridges in Brooklyn and Manhattan looking out for **** like this giving tickets all day long. I speak from experience.
Damn. That sucks. Cops are pretty chill with bicycles up in Canada...

Although I had one cop stop me on the path for running a yellow light. There was a pretty girl in the passenger seat so I think he may have been showing off.
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Old 03-26-21, 09:46 AM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by bruce19 View Post
the young Puerto Rican kids blasting Spanish songs and the rap music, it's enough to make you nuts.
Well said, Thurston. Why can't the unwashed masses just listen to Tchaikovsky?


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Old 03-26-21, 12:21 PM
  #116  
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I try, but all of the voices get in the way.
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Old 03-26-21, 12:25 PM
  #117  
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partyanimal: You said "sometimes I just like that extra motivation." Though I'm wary of headphones/earbuds when I'm riding, I do find that when I've got a long challenging hill to climb, Carlos Santana or Stevie Ray Vaughn helps me as much as a few additional lower gears. It's old school power assist.

On the other hand, not long ago at the top of a long, long hill and a very spiritied Santana solo, I ended up on the hood of a woman's car when I lost my usual paranoia about drivers being idiots.
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Old 03-26-21, 01:27 PM
  #118  
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
Well said, Thurston. Why can't the unwashed masses just listen to Tchaikovsky?


I don't care what people want to listen to. But, I don't want it blasted at me at 120 decibels when I'm out in public trying to have dinner. Is that so hard to understand? FWIW I speak Spanish so it's not the language. It's the noise level. What makes you think Puertorriquenos are unwashed masses pendejo?

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Old 03-26-21, 03:29 PM
  #119  
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"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."
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Old 03-28-21, 07:16 PM
  #120  
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Wearing earbuds that block sounds from your environment can be dangerous whether cycling, driving a vehicle, or even walking.
On our tandem, I installed a Delta Cycle AH1000 Airzound Bike Horn (115 db) and even that wasn't enough to get the attention of a cyclist riding down the middle of a fairly narrow bike path. This was in farm country, with hay fields on both sides, no road, silent except for crickets and birds. I guess he had his music volume up pretty high. Oh well, if he doesn't care about his safety or mine, I shouldn't be surprised if he doesn't care about his hearing, either!
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Old 04-04-21, 06:15 AM
  #121  
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"What you do differently when you hear a car"

Originally Posted by MattTheHat View Post
Can someone PLEASE tell me what they do differently when they hear a car coming?
This is a really smart question, and I'd be interested in all of the serious answers. Full disclosure: I sometimes ride with earbuds (Carlos Santana is my superpower on a long torturous hill), but not if it's a trafficky area and I'm on the street.

What I "do differently" is start paying attention. I try to constantly scan 360 degrees as I ride, but sometimes I momentarily get fixated on something. It might be a pothole, or a dog thinking about making a run at me, or a nice pair of legs in short shorts. Whatever it is, the sound of a car--behind me, approaching at an intersecton hidden by a bush, coming around a curve in front of me--tells me to redirect my attention to that dangerous thing that is my number one safety priority. Remember that even on residential streets, a car can appear out of nowhere and be on your bumper in a second or two. Once I see the car, then I monitor the car's behavior to judge whether I need to get out of their way or not. Most times it's no, but every now and then I run into (a few times literally) a driver who's erratic, not paying attention, can't see over the steering wheel, clearly doesn't know where the right side of their vehicle is, etc. I think that the only protection we have against the metal monsters is vigilance. I'm not afraid of traffic, but I'm wary as hell.
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Old 04-04-21, 07:48 AM
  #122  
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Originally Posted by cjenrick View Post
i like this JBL Flip 4 setup right here.
use to be man, my legs are cooked, do i really want to ride today in the cold rain?'

then i remember "I Got Tunes!" and i leap out o bed like a frog in a dynamite pond.

never had to use it at full volume because it is so loud. pedestrians can hear me from 50 yards out. every time.

full charge goes all day at high volume. i can still hear cars so there is no safety problems.

figuring out the least offensive play list was the ticket.

turns out the answer was Norteno music. Coridos. from the 60's.

90% of people love it. and they can hear that push button accordion a mile away.

i had an old couple in there 80's turn face to face and give each other a kiss when they heard the music. it was a slower song.

i have had girls start dancing. i had a group of female riders yell "hell ya, i want one of those on my bike!"

there are not that many Mexican people out here where i live. today there just happened to be a Mexican family walking with their kids and when Mom heard the music, she tuned around with a huge smile on her face as to say 'wow, we are not alone out here after all!

today I came across another Mexican family and the youngster yelled 'i like your music!"

and it motivates me when things are tough as Corido's are about tough times.

and it does not trigger youtube ads!

these guys are the best Norteno players that ever lived>



Iím in that 10%.

Hate to give you the bad news, but you are a nuisance and a noise polluter.
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Old 04-05-21, 10:49 AM
  #123  
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Here's a just-hours-ago example of why I listen for cars.

I was on my morning faux-commute ride. I was on a residential-ish street, crossing one of the busiest streets in the city, which consists of 4 packed and very fast lanes. As I came up to the l light at the intersection, just as I was about to stop, the light turned green. I went ahead, but slowly, looking left and right as I went, because in Atlanta a green light means 2-3 cars will still be running through the intersection. As I cleared the intersection, I heard a car behind me, approaching. This car had apparently turned onto the street behind me while I was watching for the light-runners--and between the time I first heard it and the time I saw it in my mirror, it went from nowhere to right on my bumper. Now, you can say that the reason I didn't look in my mirror to see it was that my normal surveillance rotation was distracted: true! I was more concerned with light-runners than anything else. Nevertheless, it was not my mirrors, not situational awareness, not anything but sound that clued me in. And then, yes, I did something different: we were sharing a wide street, so I moved to the right to give it room to safely pass.

That's why I don't ride with music on the street. I'm not criticizing people who do; just saying that it's not for me.
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Old 04-07-21, 10:01 AM
  #124  
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+1 to Aftershokz mentioned before. Great to hear the traffic and the elements while riding!
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Old 04-12-21, 10:20 AM
  #125  
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I used to use in-ear headphones (pods). Then I found Aeropex by Aftershokz! Wow, what a difference in riding and in life. It is like have my backgound music everywhere. Aeropex is outside the ear letting you be aware of your surroundings and carry on a conversation as you ride. I also wear them everywhere while listening to music or podcast or what ever. They make any tasks enjoyable.
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