11th December 2017.Cycling isn't just a quick and handy way to travel and exercise ? for many; it's a way of life! From those who cycle to work in the morning to the gearheads who tinker all weekend for extra speed, the people who love bicycles are undoubtedly passionate. When the holidays creep up on the calendar and Christmas approaches, though, it can be difficult to know just what to purchase for them. You might want to support their hobby, but it seems as though they already own everything important. New bicycles are expensive, too, so surprising them with a brand-new cycle is usually out of the question. However, there are all kinds of fun and creative gift ideas you can explore for your cyclist friend. Many of them fall well within the budget ranges of most people, too, so you can stack up the presents without tearing down your budget for the season. Every cyclist is a little different, though ? do you know a mountain biker? A racer? A weekend warrior who just likes to ride when he or she can find the time? We'll take this into account as we discuss six of the following awesome ideas for giving gifts to the cyclists you know.
Equip them with some new maintenance tools
Every cyclist knows the situation: they're riding along, enjoying the scenery, when all of a sudden, they feel a bump under their front tyre ? followed by an unwelcome hissing sound. Something punctured the tyre, and now they'll have to hope their maintenance kit is still well stocked. Other times, the chain might break, or there could be a problem with the way the bike handles. All these are easy fixes in the field for a cyclist who knows what to do and has the right tools. It's the latter part of that equation that's so important. So why not lend a helping hand? From pre-assembled maintenance kits to specific items like tyre patches, you can purchase a range of high-performance items that will make roadside patch jobs that much easier. Tools for replacing tyres or tightening nuts and bolts are also a welcome addition to any cyclist's kit. Choose lightweight items that are easy to carry. Throw in a bicycle pump that's easy to use, and your loved one will be ready to face almost any sudden breakdown.
Give your friend a better way to stay hydrated
Cycling requires a lot of energy, and using up all that energy creates a lot of body heat. The result, of course, is perspiration and lots of it, too. It's all too easy for a cyclist to become dehydrated without even realising the severity of the problem, especially over a long ride. Make it so that they don't have any excuse: gift them an awesome water bottle for cyclists that can they can operate with one hand. It should be easy to reach down, grab the bottle out of its holster on the bike frame, and open it for a drink without too much distraction. For road racers and long-distance cyclists, this is an invaluable addition to their kit. Hydration packs are a good idea, too. Rather than a bottle, these packs are transportable reservoirs filled with water. A simple drinking tube attached to the reservoir is always within easy reach. The cyclist can then take a drink whenever and wherever they need, without even needing to take their eyes off the road. It's a neat piece of equipment, and it makes a great gift.
Find something to help them personalise their bicycle
Think about the way you take care of your vehicle. You probably try to wash your car every so often, you keep it in good working shape, and you might even take some steps to personalise it. That might be small items you keep inside or a bumper sticker on the outside. Whichever option you choose, you're making a statement: "This is mine!" Cyclists love to do the same thing to their bikes, but there are many more options to choose from as well. You can opt to give the gift of personalisation items, especially if you know just what the recipient would choose for themselves. What are some of these items you could purchase? There are plenty of decals and stickers, of course; those are timeless classics. You can also select colourful replacement parts they can use to replace the stock components of their bicycle. Even the spokes can be changed out for a set with rainbow colours for an added splash of personality. Browse your local bike shop for even more ideas.
Lights, phone cases, and other accessories as gifts
Besides items for personalisation, many other bike accessories also make excellent gifts. For example, you could choose to give them clip-on LED lights. These often come in both basic white light and many other colours too. These are excellent for both boosting visibility to others on the road and illuminating the path ahead during a ride after dark or at twilight. Why stop there with items to attach to the handlebars? Everyone loves using their phone for all kinds of things these days, including navigating, listening to music, and even tracking their bike rides. Fumbling with pulling it out of a pocket is no fun, though. Choose a sturdy phone case that can attach to the bike frame. This way, your loved one can keep their phone in easy view and protected from the weather at the same time. Other items can add more utility to the bicycle. For commuters, choose baskets or saddlebags that will boost the bike's carrying capacity. Now your friend will have a way to do their grocery shopping from the bike saddle.
Cyclists love clothes for battling for the weather
There is a tremendous amount of variety available when you decide you want to give clothing as a gift. In the spirit of the season, the first thing you should consider is a good jacket. Either a light jacket or a heavier outer coat can make perfect seasonal gifts. Cyclists face more than just cold weather while riding their bikes ? they must contend with far more wind, too. Even the rain grows more uncomfortable when you must cycle through it at speed. With that in mind, choose clothes that help your loved one fight back against the weather. From jackets for repelling rain to technical fabrics for breathability and comfort in the heat, you'll find plenty of options. Mix and match to help contribute to a wardrobe that says, "I'm ready for anything, no matter the weather!"
Choose a high-tech bike computer for an exciting gift
While many smartphone apps function as GPS trackers and more today, there are still high-end dedicated units that clip to the bike's handlebars and deliver a whole load of functions. These devices are known as bike computers, and they can do everything from tracking a rider's distance to syncing with a heart rate monitor. They're the ultimate tool for technical bikers who love to gather data about everything they do in the saddle. Not every unit is expensive, either; you can select a model that offers the level of functionality that matches with your gift budget. Why choose one of these instead of just purchasing a gift card to a smartphone app store? Bike computers provide much more centralised control over lots of data. Plus, they can interface with many of the most popular apps on the market. In other words, they can slot perfectly into your technology-obsessed cyclist's life.
Surprise your cyclist friend with a thoughtful gift
From new accessories and gear to the opportunity to personalise their bike even more, you can find tonnes of items to give as Christmas gifts for those who love life on two wheels. If you're a cyclist yourself ? or even if you just dabble ? it shouldn't be too hard to spot the best products available. When you evaluate an item, consider its usefulness and how often your recipient might use it during a ride. The more frequently you can imagine it coming in handy, the better a gift it will make! Focus on enabling your friend or relative to improve their skills while having more fun in the saddle. Follow @SportNessUK