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Five Simple Bike Tasks YOU Should Know

By Annette 2 years agoNo Comments

If you own a bike there are a few simple things that you should really know how to do.  It just makes life with a bike easier.  We are going to start with a short list that we will be adding to in the future.  Once you’ve mastered these skills move onto the next list and before you know it your bike knowledge will have really grown.

We love to see women learning bike tasks because this gives you confidence and will ease your mind while out riding.  Meaning you can goRide more places, more often with a smile…

Five Simple Bike Tasks


Tyre PressureYour tyre will naturally lose air over time so you must check it.  How do you do this?  Either give it a squeeze or push your thumb into your tyre and hopefully there won’t be too much “give”.  It should be firm to pressure with enough air in it to keep your wheel protected while giving you a smooth, comfortable ride.  Different types of riding requires different types of tyres and different tyre pressure.  To learn what tyre pressure you need for your tyre look on the side wall.


BIKE PARTS: Tyre, tube & valves

LEARN MORE:  Pumping Up a Tyre – A video

get better checking squeeze test check air bicycle tyres goRide

Squeeze test on bike tyre

Presta & Schrader valve.  Buying a bike tube. goRide

Presta & Schrader bike valves

Range of bike pumps

Floor & mini pumps

Adjusting Seat Height – Seat comfort is really important to enjoying your time on the bike.  The height your seat is set at plays an important role in this comfort.  Kids grow really quickly so adjusting seat height will be a regular part of their riding experience.  Also your seat can get knocked out of line and need straightening.  Your seat sits on top of a tube that is called your seat post tube.  This tube can slide up & down or rotate.  If you’re lucky you won’t even need tools for this one.  A lot of seat posts are held in place with a quick release mechanism.

TOOLS YOU WILL NEED: Allen key or Adjustable Spanner (if needed)

BIKE PARTS:  Seat, seat tube, seat tube clamp

LEARN MORE: To read about why you might like to increase the height of your seat read our bike skills for beginners story on starting & stopping.  To do the adjustment head to  3 Simple Bike Seat Adjustments: Height, Tilt, Reach  also check out our story on pedaling to understand what you are trying to achieve with your body position on the bike

This bike seat is as low as it will go, notice the bent knees even at the end of the pedal stroke.

This seat needs raised for a better pedal stroke

Diagram of bike seat

Seat diagram

Wheel Off To be able to get your wheel off and back onto your bike may seem a bit daunting but it is a super handy little thing to know.  It can make transporting your bike easier.  It is a must know for fixing a flat tyre (see #4) and makes working with your wheel much easier.  This is another task made easy by a quick release but the tools are simple if you don’t have this.

TOOLS YOU WILL NEED: Wrench (if needed, see photos below)

BIKE PARTS:  Wheel hub, brake callipers or disc brakes, front forks, rear derailleur

LEARN MORE:  How to get your wheel off & back onto your bike

Quick release on front wheel hub

Quick release on front wheel hub

Lift the derailleur up and back and you create space.

Lifting a rear derailleur out of the way helps when taking a rear wheel off

Horizontal dropout.

Rear wheel hub that will need a wrench to loosen the bolt

Flat tyre  – following on nicely from a couple of the tasks above fixing a flat tyre is a combination of a few tasks.  It is just a part of life when you own a bike or your kids have bikes – there will be flat tyres to deal with.  To make this less of a chore and more of a task that will give you a sense of achievement we have put together a story that takes you through the steps involved

TOOLS YOU WILL NEED:  tyre levers, spare tube or puncture repair kit, bike pump, adjustable spanner (if needed for removing wheel)

BIKE PARTS:  Tyre, wheel rim, spokes, tube, valves

LEARN MORE:  How to Fix a Flat Tyre

A flat tyre.  How to fix a flat tyre. goRide

Flat tyres are part of life with a bike

Tyre lever in use. Bike Tools. goRide

Tyre lever being used to remove a tyre

Puncture Repair Kit - no glue

You will either need to repair the tube or replace it

Brake Lever Position  – You should have a relaxed hand grip on your handlebar that allows you to naturally engage your brakes with one or two fingers.  The most common problem with brake levers is that they are too far away from your fingers (most kids will have this issue with a new bike but it is also really common for women as bikes comes out of the factory set to male hand sizes!!)

TOOLS YOU WILL NEED: Screwdriver and/or allen key

BIKE PARTS:  handlebar, brake lever

LEARN MORE: This story explains how to adjust your brake lever position (rotating around your handlebars &/or change the distance to your fingers)

get better braking position 2 finger brake levers goRide

The lever should be at or just in front of your first finger joint

Bike brake levers. Handlebars. goRide

The position of the whole braking system on your handlebars is really important

Always check your bike when you have made a change by getting on it in a safe environment and testing the change.  Before every ride you should do a 30 second bike safety check

Cleaning your bike is a fantastic way to get used to handling your bike & gives you the opportunity to inspect it.  Be curious about how parts work and get to know whats normal for your bike.  Bike Cleaning for the Kids & YOU

get Safe and goRide

Thanks for reading. Used together our stories, resources & products support you to achieve and develop as a rider.

Related Resources:

Bike Tool Terms

Bike Part Terms

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