urban cycling

Theft In The City

GPS Tracking Tightening the Grip On City Thieves

Bike theft can be as devastating as car theft to the owner, but is treated very differently by the authorities. This emotional trigger is the reason for the rise in demand for technological advancements in the GPS bike tracking market. Smart tech products are providing powerless cyclists the tools needed to combat the plague of city bike theft.

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A survey conducted by Van Lierop in Montreal and published in the International Journal of Sustainable Transportation revealed the shocking truth that bicycle theft can happen more than once in a cyclists lifetime. Couple this with the seemingly flippant way that bike theft is handled by the police, the market for GPS bike trackers becomes evident.

Even Google experienced a continuous stream of bike theft at their headquarters in Mountain View California. Thanks to GPS tracking they have been able to locate a few of their missing rides, some had even traveled as far as Mexico.

A low priority crime

Bike travel is considered a sustainable means of transportation, yet when it comes to protection, cyclists are often left in a lurch. Police consider bike theft to be of low priority due to the highly pressurized crime environment that is synonymous with a city environment. Investigations into this are often limited by many factors such as identifying and apprehending the culprits. Therefore the matter of protection lies with each cyclist in order to gain a semblance of mental rest when parking their bikes in the city streets. Cyclists must assume responsibility for finding cost effective GPS bike trackers in order to protect their property.

Sherlock on the case

Sherlock, the invisible GPS tracker, is the brainchild idea of Pierluigi Freni, who after great frustration with having his bike stolen in Turin, decided enough was enough. Indeed this final straw found him wondering, what if he had an app that could track his bike the same way people track lost iPhones. The resulting answer was the invisible GPS bike tracker Sherlock, just like it’s fictional detective counterpart.

Sherlock can be considered ‘petite’ for an anti-theft gadget for cyclists. The invisibility factor of this piece of tech makes it ideal, as it ‘sits’ inside the handlebars. This ingenuity means that thieves cannot simply remove the device and get away with your mode of transportation.  

The device is activated when parking and should the bike be removed an alert is sent. In addition to this, all the information of both the bike and its owner is included in the app as a ‘bike passport’. The development of this part of the app was in conjunction with police.  

No need to play superhero

With this innovation comes some concern for vigilante type behavior in pursuit of the culprit. It goes without saying that should you find yourself in a situation where your bike is being stolen and confrontation is not a possibility, call the police. With the tracking, the culprits are able to be found without you having to risk your life or put yourself in unnecessary danger.

Do you have any suggestions for GPS bike tracking devices? Share them below!

Group Think: The Benefits of Collective Riding

Most of us own a bike, whether it is gathering dust in the garage or a treasured possession that is used and maintained regularly. Whichever end of the spectrum, the growing number of clubs in an area near you provide an excellent opportunity to get fit.  Physical activity is essential in maintaining your own wellbeing and good health. Regular workouts will help lower your risk of diseases as well as improving your mental health. This is especially true for our senior generation. Studies have shown that in the over 60s, those that cycle regularly are 50% less likely to suffer from a heart attack.

There are so many positives related to cycling that you can easily be convinced to get back on your bike.

Finding Others

Cycling is a fantastic low impact form of exercise which is easy on the joints and makes it a perfect exercise choice for seniors. By cycling regularly, you also increase your ability to perform everyday tasks such as walking, climbing the stairs and balancing.

However, people have found that the benefits to bike riding actually increase when riding with others. There are growing numbers of cycling clubs and groups, all of which are appealing in different ways, perhaps due to their locality, age demographic and ability levels.   

Why Join a Club?

A club is a great starting point for cyclists of all ages and abilities. Being part of a group can break down those barriers that may have stopped you from getting back into the saddle, particularly if it’s been a while.

Concerned about a puncture? There will always be someone in the club who will be able to assist.

Unsure about rights of way? In a group setting, the ride will have been planned and you will be introduced to paths and byways that you might not have known about.

Lack of confidence in your riding ability? There are clubs that cater to all ability levels so you can be sure that the group will be riding at your pace. Most clubs have a ‘no rider left behind’ policy. This should further alleviate any concerns about being out on your own, especially if you are worried about being easily tired and feeling unfit on your first ride.

Many of the advantages of cycling in a club are universal. Both juniors and seniors alike can prosper from the improvements to their physical and mental health. The health benefits are of course far reaching, but being part of a group and the activities outside of the cycling are hugely beneficial for all.


Not Just Riding

Once you have found that like-minded group of riders, the routes you take will lead to other interests. Using your rides as a way to discover new destinations and to research which cafes do the best coffees and cake is something great to report back to other family and friends.

Many clubs have discounts offered by associated shops or organizations. This will assist you if you want to take cycling more seriously.

So, if you have been considering getting back onto the bike, then have a look at some local clubs and get in touch. If you're in the New York area, LifeCycle Biking will be introducing The Crank Crew in 2018 and we'd love to have you join us! Sign up on the Home screen to learn details as they unfold. 

See you on the road!

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