Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Park Connector Network

Singapore is a bike-friendly country, thanks to the Park Connector Network. You can see the 'PCN' marked on the bike track to know that you are on one.

When I came here last year, I was so impressed with the local government policy on cycling.

Firstly, the PCN. I found out that it is really safe for cycling. Then, we are allowed to ride on the sidewalk along the residential area like Tampines. Yes, it's slower but safer! Also, the SMRT allow us to carry folding bikes on their train & buses. Brilliant! And finally, we can find lots of bicycle shops around this small island. Ok, even though it's not that cheap but at least I can get the bike stuff off the rack rather than have to buy it online and wait for weeks to arrive.

I start to hit the Park Connector as soon as I got my bike. Really impressed with the East Coast Park (ECP) which I think is a fantastic place to exercise and R&R...I started to explore the network. The route from ECP to the Changi Beach Park is great. riding on the shaded track along Changi Airport Runaway & ECP/ BCP coastal roads is never boring.

And now this has become my weekend ritual. (what do you expect from a weekend warrior huh?) I just hope that one day the network will cover the whole island because riding on the PCN is safer and enjoyable. In fact, riding on PCN makes me look forward for my Sundays every week!

Ride on!

My cycling helmet saved my life

Have you ever watched those all-action police video clips, the ones where drug squad officers sprint up the garden path of some unsuspecting dealer's house and smash down the front door brandishing a sturdy, hand-held battering ram? Last year, I pioneered a new, if slightly unorthodox, "battering ram" technique of my own which may well be of interest to police training officers everywhere. The ram I employed was a tool that proved robust, powerful and effective: my head.

I wasn't on a police raid at the time, although my actions did prompt a 999 call to the emergency services. And my head didn't actually ram a door. Instead, I used it to butt the front wheel of a car, parked in a street near my home.

I feel extremely fortunate to have escaped serious injury, or even death. The precise circumstances of my tumble are now a little hazy, but one recollection remains crystal clear. The nurses and doctors who treated me each asked me the same simple question: "Were you wearing a helmet?"

If my ordeal, which left me nursing strained shoulder ligaments, torn muscles and a bruised ego, has convinced me of one fact alone, it is surely that my cycling helmet saved my life.

And yet many cyclists, free to choose whether or not to wear protective headgear, choose not to. According to the Bicycle Helmet Research Foundation, the average cyclist would have to pedal for more than 3,000 years to suffer a serious head injury – and yet some 150 cyclists a year die in accidents.

However, cyclists may soon be compelled to strap on a helmet before setting off. Last week, a High Court judge ruled that cyclists who fail to wear one should receive up to 15 per cent less compensation for injuries resulting from accidents in which the helmet could have made a difference.

The ruling, by Mr Justice Griffith Williams, came in a case brought by 29-year-old Robert Smith who sustained a serious brain injury when he was knocked off his bike by a speeding motorcyclist in Brightlingsea, Essex, in 2005. Because of the speed of this particular collision, however, the motorcyclist was held fully liable. But the judge ruled: "There can be no doubt that the failure to wear a helmet may expose the cyclist to risk of greater injury."

What continues to amaze me is how few cyclists wear a crash helmet. The day after my accident, my daughter, Rosie, who is 13, counted 50 cyclists on her way home from school: "I saw 26 not wearing helmets – that's crazy!"

Excuses not to wear a helmet range from youngsters who protest "It doesn't look cool", to one of my Telegraph colleagues who said: "I never wear one because I get cold ears if I do".

Last year, Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London and a renowned cyclist, wrote in this newspaper about his only serious cycling accident in almost a decade of pedalling around the city. He was "negotiating Knightsbridge with extreme caution when a French tourist walked across the road without looking (you could tell he was French by the noise he made on impact)"; Johnson sustained a sprained wrist. A helmet – or, an "undignified plastic hat", as he described it – would have made no difference. "If I'd had a foghorn, it might have come in handy, or possibly a cow-catcher fitted to the front of my bike. But a helmet?"

Helmet-dodgers are always quick with their excuses. They were even given a licence not to buckle up in 2006 when traffic research from the University of Bath suggested that wearing protective headgear could put cyclists at an advantage. In surveys, drivers tended to give those they perceived to be "unsafe" cyclists – those wearing helmets – a wider berth.

However, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents insists that, in an accident, helmets do help protect against injuries. Peter Hutchinson, honorary consultant neurosurgeon at Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, who regularly operates on cyclists with brain injuries, said: "Helmets act as a cushion and protect the skull. Common sense would dictate therefore that it reduces the risk to the underlying brain. If you're not wearing a helmet, there's an increased chance of fracturing your skull and causing a brain injury. If you are wearing one, then the helmet will fracture and protect the skull. It's better to have a fractured helmet than a fractured skull."

Source: health

Lance Armstrong won't face sanctions

No sanctions against Armstrong: France's anti-doping agency said Friday it will not seek sanctions against Lance Armstrong over a dispute with a drug tester.

At issue was a 20-minute delay when Armstrong said a drug tester who showed up March 17 to collect blood, urine and hair samples agreed to let him shower while the American rider's assistants checked the tester's credentials.

"Just got the word from the French agency AFLD on the shower gate incident," the seven-time Tour de France winner wrote on Twitter. "Case closed, no penalty, all samples clean. Onward."

Source: The Seattle Times/ photo from

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

How to Treat Hypothermia

Hypothermia can be a killer if not treated. This condition of lowered core body temperature, which can occur at temperatures as high as 13° Celsius (40° Fahrenheit), occurs when your body loses heat faster than it can be produced. Hypothermia can be particularly dangerous because it affects the mental and physical abilities of victims – they may not recognize that they are suffering from it or be able to help themselves if they do. Take these steps to treat someone who is suffering from hypothermia.

  1. Be aware of conditions likely to lead to hypothermia. While extreme cold is one obvious condition, people are at risk for hypothermia at cool temperatures if they become chilled due to extended exposure outdoors, especially when wet. The following types of people are especially prone to hypothermia:

    • Anyone who has fallen into cold water.
    • The elderly, especially those with inadequate food, shelter or clothing
    • Infants (e.g., if they sleep in a cold room)
    • Those who are exposed to the cold for extended durations: hunters, hikers, the homeless, etc.
    • Alcohol and drug users

  2. Know the symptoms of hypothermia. Hypothermia onset usually begins with shivering and continues with other mental and physical symptoms. If you see someone who may have been exposed to the cold showing these symptoms, take action immediately:

    • Shivering (Note that in severe hypothermia, shivering will cease)
    • Exhaustion
    • Slurred speech, memory loss
    • Confusion
    • Drowsiness
    • Infants: Bright red and cold skin, very low energy

  3. Get the victim into a warm room or shelter. Preventing further heat loss is critical. Keep the victim protected from cold ground (put a dry, thick barrier between them and any cold surface) and shield from cold and wind (use your own body as a shield if necessary). Make sure that anything you use that touches the victim is dry.
  4. Remove any wet clothing the victim is wearing. Wet clothing (and any wet blankets) will continue lowering the victim's body temperature as the water evaporates. If the person is unconscious or it's taking too long to remove the clothing, cut it off.
  5. Take the person's temperature. If it is below 95°F (35°C), the situation is an emergency — get medical attention immediately!
  6. Warm the victim. Hypothermia victims will need help to regain body temperature. However, don't rub or massage the victim; doing so can increase risks of cardiovascular problems. Use the following techniques:

    • Warm the center of the body. Focus on the chest, neck, head, and groin. If one is available, use an electric blanket. Otherwise, use skin-to-skin contact under loose, dry layers of blankets, clothing, towels, or sheets. Whatever you apply should be warm rather than hot--no hot water, heating pad or heating lamp--and do not attempt to warm the arms and legs, as this will push cold blood back toward the heart, lungs and brain, making things worse.

    • With alert hypothermia victims, have them drink warm non-alcoholic drinks such as hot chocolate. (Alcohol will make it more difficult for their body to retain heat.) Avoid caffeinated beverages, which are diuretics and can cause heat loss. Beverages of any kind should not be given to an unconscious person. You can also provide snacks to provide energy for warmth. Sweet/high carbohydrate snacks can work well; trail mix or other foods that combine sugars and fats are ideal.

    • After body temperature has increased, keep the person dry and wrapped in a warm blanket, including the head and neck.

  7. Monitor the victim and await medical attention. Be alert for potential breathing or cardiovascular problems.
  • Get medical attention as soon as possible.

  • A person with severe hypothermia may be unconscious and may not seem to have a pulse or to be breathing. In this case, handle the victim gently, and get emergency assistance immediately. Even if the victim appears dead, CPR should be provided. CPR should continue while the victim is being warmed, until the victim responds or medical aid becomes available. In some cases, hypothermia victims who appear to be dead can be successfully resuscitated.

  • Victims of hypothermia are at risk for other complications such as frostbite [2]; be alert for cold damage to extremities.

  • Prevention is always better than having to give first aid! Read this article for tips on preventing a problem in the first place.

  • Water bottles filled with hot water and stuffed into socks make great heat compresses.
Source: WikiHow

Find Your Comfort Zone

Dressing for frigid temperatures as a casual-clothing commuter is not the same as gearing up for a cold-weather training ride. It's unlikely you'll wear high-tech cycling apparel--sweat-wicking base layer, wool jersey and wind- and moisture-blocking tights. No, you're just a guy or gal who has a few city blocks to travel to work or who has errands to run around town. So how do you stay warm when your base layer consists of khakis, Gold Toes and a dress shirt?

Be cool
Step outside: You should feel comfortable--and even a little cool--but not warm. If you're toasty before you start coasting, you'll be hot when you're pedaling. That will cause you to sweat, and sweat makes you cold. Play it safe: Layer. It's easy to peel clothing off if you start to boil--and just as easy to slip it back on.

Add accordingly
Start with this advice, then fine-tune it to your comfort level. Cold: Wear medium-weight gloves, a wind- or waterproof jacket and an ear band. Colder: Add a hat under your helmet and choose heavier gloves. Coldest: Pull on a face mask and slip shoe covers over your tootsies--and maybe add windproof pants. Raining: Do what it takes to stay dry, such as a waterproof jacket and pants. After a few test rides in different temperatures, you'll start to figure out what to wear when.

Source: photo from

Cycling shows slow beauty of nature

These times require "green life innovation," and reinventing carbon-free bicycles as a main means of transportation is our given task, President Lee Myung-bak said in his bi-weekly radio address on Monday (Apr. 20).

Bicycles fall down when they move too slowly, and likewise we should prepare for a "bicycle era" before it gets too late, the President said.

"By 2012 when the restoration of four rivers – the Han, Geum, Yeongsan and Nakdong Rivers - is complete, bike paths totaling a length of 2,000 kilometers will be set up. Somebody living in Mokpo [in South Jeolla Province] will be able to reach Seoul by bicycle, running along the Yeongsan and Geum Rivers. Another person living in Seoul can reach Busan [South Gyeongsang Province] via the Han and Nakdong Rivers," he said.

He also said that major bike arteries connecting all major provinces will also be connected to the feeder roads of every town and village.

Bicycle tours will show people "the beauty of slowness," which cannot possibly be sensed from inside rushing cars, Lee said. When comparatively less developed towns utilize their resources and provide bicycle riders with attractive spots to rest or stay, it will contribute a great deal to the development of the regional economy, he added.

He regretted that Korea currently imports over 2 million bicycles from China, the Netherlands and Canada, and suggested the country develop core technologies for bicycle manufacturing.

Instead of falling down, bicycles go straight ahead when their riders pedal fast, Lee said. "I hope everyone will have a great start to the week with hope-filled pedaling," he added.


Yes I've tried this before and it works!

Clean your helmet - "To make a stinky helmet fresh again wear it in the shower! Get a good shampoo lather going on your head, put your helmet on and massage your scalp with the helmet for a few minutes. Then, give it a good rinse." Tom Smith, NY

Source: Cycling Tips/

Not again Tyler!!

United States cycling star Tyler Hamilton says he is definitely retiring from the sport after testing positive for banned substances for a second time. The 38-year-old admitted using an anti-depressant which contained the steroid DHEA. He was banned for two years in 2004 after an illegal blood transfusion and says he could not face having to sit out another ban.

Hamilton's top years were 2003 and 2004. In 2003, he won races including the Liège-Bastogne-Liège and, in 2004, came fourth in the Tour de France. He went on to win gold in the time trial at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

Source: Radio Netherlands Worlwide/ photo by Matt Benassi

Bicycle Recall


About 14,000 Specialized 2009 model bicycles, made in China and imported by Specialized Bicycle Components Inc., of Morgan Hill, Calif., because the handlebars can break, posing a fall hazard to the rider. The company has received two reports of the handlebar breaking during use.

This includes one instance of a rider suffering head trauma which resulted in unconsciousness and a puncture wound to the arm. This recall involves HL handlebars on these 2009 Specialized bicycles: Cross Trail Comp, Myka HT Comp, Myka HT Elite, Rockhopper, Rockhopper Comp and Rockhopper Comp 29. The model number of the HL handlebar is ALR-13 NTFOV. The recalled products were sold at authorized dealers nationwide from June 2008 through February this year.


About 3,000 Roubaix Comp and Roubaix Pro 2004 bicycles, made in Taiwan and imported by Specialized Bicycle Components Inc., of Morgan Hill, Calif., because the cable stop on the bicycle can loosen, which can cause the rider to lose control and fall from the bike. The company received reports of two falls that resulted in fractures requiring medical attention and surgery.

The recalled bicycles include: 2004 Roubaix Comp 18; 2004 Roubaix Comp 27; 2004 Roubaix Pro 18; and 2004 Roubaix Pro frameset models. Only bicycles with a single rivet fastening the cable stop to the frame are subject to recall. The recalled products were sold at Specialized authorized dealers nationwide from September 2003 through August 2004.



CPSC is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. Please tell us about it by clicking here.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Specialized toll-free at (877) 808-8154 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. MT Monday through Friday or visit the firm’s Web site at

Source : AP & CPSC

See the world on a bicycle

AFTER 11 years, 78 tyre changes and travelling across 144,000 km on the same bicycle, intrepid Daisuke Nakanishi has criss-crossed 123 countries, with Singapore being his 124th stop.

The 39-year-old cyclist enthusiast from Osaka, Japan, decided to embark on this trip when he was just 20 as he had a great desire to explore the world and meet new people.

The economics graduate worked for six years and saved up about S$75,000 before starting on his world tour.

During his experience, he has encountered hyenas in South Africa, thieves in Brazil and even a biking accident in India. South America is his favourite place so far.

He said: 'The people there are very friendly and open. During my time in Chile, a family even let me put up at their place.' He eventually picked up Spanish during his stay there and even had the privilege of being given honorary citizenships in countries such as Venezuela and Peru.

During his trip, he also had the opportunity to meet famous figures like football star Pele, former US President Jimmy Carter and the current Nepalese President.

Daisuke prefers to travel alone as it gives him more freedom and control over his journey. He let on that he has only felt lonely once in the 11 years. He keeps in constant contact with his parents and his older brother via email whenever he is able to gain access to the internet.

His journey will come to an end this year as he has decided to go home by then.

Daisuke left Singapore on Tuesday afternoon for Indonesia.

To find out more about his travel experiences, you can visit Daisuke's website at

Source: The Straits Times

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Ride of Silence

Join cyclists worldwide in a silent slow-paced ride in honor of those who have been injured or killed while cycling on public roadways.

The event will be taking places in hundredths of cities across the world.

In Singapore, it will takes place on May 20, 2009 at 7:00 pm, starting from Merlion Park

The ride will be 19Km, slow paced (20km/h)

You can see the detailed map here: Google Map

Dress in White - Helmet Mandatory

Source :

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Brooks Saddle

This is it!! The moment of truth.
I have read many testimonials from so many people on the Net about how good this BROOKS saddle it changed their lives etc. Sometimes I felt that it's just too good to be true . So, it's time for me to try it myself!

Yesterday, by accident I found a bike shop in Siglap that sells this leather saddle. Since I 've been looking for this saddle for quite some time plus the friendly service of the shop owner (who tirelessly answers all my questions about his various products) without hesitation, I bought the B17 Special because I love the black leather + copper rails & rivets classic look compared to the usual 'Brooks' Trademark' honey look. goes....

Established in December 2006