Posts

Learn about TPI and make sure your bike has the tires you need

Curious about TPI? So are a lot of other cyclists and triathletes. In short, TPI stands for Threads per Inch. Take the time to learn about TPI, how it can impact your ride, and what bike tires we recommend. This knowledge can be beneficial during your Kerrville Triathlon training!

Tires are made with threads. Lower-end tires have lower counts which tend to make them heavier and provide a harsher ride. Higher-end tires have higher thread counts which allow them to ride smoother and contour to bumps on the road better. On some tires, the threads are mixed in with Kevlar or some other type of durable fabric. This makes them more resilient to flats. It is important to note that a higher TPI tire is not more prone to flats than a lower TPI tire. No matter what the threads per inch is on your tires, there are steps you can take to prevent flat tires.

Threads per inch and the tires you need

Tires with lower threads per inch are less expensive and are more common for training use. Higher TPI tires are more expensive and tend to be used for racing or for riding roads where you are looking for a smoother ride.

For a great low TPI tire, we recommend the Vittoria Zaffiro Tire. For those of you looking for the high TPI tire consider the Vittoria Diamante, the Vittoria Open Corsa, the Vredestein Tricomp, or the Continental Grand Prix 4000.

Check with James Balentine at City Limit Cycles to see if these tires are still good options.

Implement these group riding guidelines on your next ride

Group riding provides cyclists with enjoyment, exercise, training, support from other cyclists, and safety. Whether you’re riding to lunch with co-workers or completing a 50-mile Kerrville Triathlon Festival training ride with your crew, the following group riding guidelines will come in handy. Knowing these basic group riding guidelines will also make the ride more enjoyable and safer for everyone involved.

* Complete a quick, pre-ride safety check.

* Obey all traffic laws.

* Operate bike in such a manner as to not offend or endanger motorists, pedestrians, etc.

* Wear a helmet for safety (and be a good model for children).

* Activate all lights on bikes.

* Wear reflective gear that makes the group more visible, even in the daytime.

* Ride single file except in areas where it is safe to ride side-by-side.

* When riding in a pack, look at “shoulder level” of cyclists in front of you. This allows you to see what is happening further up the road and not focus on the cyclists in front of you. Fixing your gaze on the back tire of the person in front of you doesn’t give you enough time to react should the entire group slow down.

* It is the responsibility of the lead rider to notify the cyclist behind them of approaching issues by saying, “jogger up, cyclist up.” This includes any potential danger that may lie ahead. It is the responsibility of each cyclist to pass the caution back to the person behind them.

Important hand signals

* Hand signals, instead of words, are used to warn riders of potential danger on the roadway. In a pack, oftentimes, the only cyclist who has enough visual warning is the front cyclist. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the lead rider to warn the cyclists behind them. If the lead cyclist (or the cyclist in front of you):

  • shakes their hand to the right = there’s a pothole, branch, or some obstacle to the right
  • shakes their hand to the left = there’s an obstacle to the left
  • puts hand behind their posterior = follow right behind them as there might be obstacles on both sides
  • puts right hand down with the flat of the hand facing you = lead cyclist is slowing down or coming to a stop

* Avoid slowing down abruptly or making any other sudden moves.

* Ask experienced riders questions when you’re not sure what is occurring.