Helen Findlay

My adventures in Middle Europe and The Colonies. This blog contains my own views and opinions and does not represent those of my employers, or any other organisation with which I am involved. Remember, just because it isn't Singletrackworld, doesn't mean it isn't shite !

Friday, May 30, 2008

Some advice on Attire for Lady Cyclists

Helping to pack up the Cellars at the moment, and found a bound volume of the first year of "Cycling" which is absolutely brilliant, and shows how much has changed, while at the same time how much has stayed the same.

I have reproduced a letter from a lady reader below. And in other news, I have a legend of Mountainbiking staying with me at the moment, Jacquie Phelan of the famous WOMBATS group is in Edinburgh visiting, doing some cycling training and playing her banjo. It is nice to have the company !

Off to Fort William this weekend (trip number one) for 10 Under the Ben, a 10 hour mountain bike endurance race. The weather forecast is looking scorchio I can't wait. Full report on monday.

Dress for Lady Cyclists – Cycling – 23rd May 1891

Another Fair Rider addresses us on the subject.

"Sir – I am sure such an attractive paper as Cycling (Flatterer ! Ed) must have a large number of lady readers, therefore I would ask you to kindly allow me to give them a bit of my experience in support of the letter from RT on “Dress for Lady Cyclers”.

Early in my cycling career, (three years ago) I was in the habit of wearing my ordinary walking dress when riding, but one unlucky day the trimming of my dress caught the pedal and became locked in with the toe-clip attached to same, and before the machine could be stopped my foot was forced under and crippled for six weeks, therefore I was prevented from riding for some months after. My experience teaches me that ladies should wear a plain short skirt of heavy material, as little drapery as possible and not to reach lower than the ankles, a loose bodice and on no account indulge in tight lacing. A small hat and neat shoe, of course.

Few ladies have a really graceful position on their machine; a long reach is the greatest fault, thus causing that ugly side to side motion called “pumping”. Let the pedals be at an easy distance, the peak of the sadlle four inches behind crank-axle, the handles low but within easy reach, and the lady cycler would soon find the advantage."