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Smart Cycling

Learn How to Ride Safely & Legally in Traffic!

Every cyclist can benefit by learning to ride safely and legally like any other vehicle on the road.
The Orange County Wheelmen offers the League of American Bicyclists two-day Smart Cycling class, teaching participants essential cycling skills:
  • Bike Handling
  • Crash Avoidance Skills
  • Riding legally in traffic
  • Bicycle Safety Checks
  • Flat Repair

This course is recommended for adults and teens aged 15 and older. It is a fast-paced, 8-hour course teaching cyclists the principles of bicycle driving and is recommended for all cyclists, regardless of experience and bike-handling skills.

All participants will receive a League of American Bicyclists "Smart Cycling" handbook and a certificate upon successful completion of the written and skill-testing examinations. You are not required to take the exam after the class unless you want a certificate.

You are welcome to bring a light dinner/snack to eat during the classroom presentation.

The class is only $50 for the general public with $35 discount to members of the Orange County Wheelmen.  Membership still a low $35 for individuals and $50 for families.  Don't miss this fantastic opportunity to become more confident while riding! Be sure to log in to the OCW website before registering. 
Our class size is set up with 1 instructor for every 5 students so every attendee gets plenty of support during the course!
If you have trouble registering online, please email Stacy Kline at and we will hold you a spot and help you register when you arrive to the class.

Course Overview: Day 2

During the 6 hour Saturday class, we cover bike handling skills on a closed course and a nine mile bike ride allowing participants to practice their cycling skills in small groups under the watchful eyes of OCW's League of American Bicyclists-trained LCIs.

Day 2 will be held from 8am - 2:30 pm on Saturday at various locations in Orange County as listed on the calendar.

Please bring your bike, water, and money for lunch.


This is the classroom lecture and is held on a weekday evening prior to the "on the bike" training on a Saturday.
Day 1 will be held from 6-9 pm on a weekday at various locations in Orange County. It includes all study materials.
Bike not required for this session.

2018 Class Schedule

Mark your calendars!

Our 2018 class has been scheduled!

Classroom session:
Wednesday, May 2, 2018, from 6-9PM
Performance Bicycles, Laguna Niguel
See calendar for map & directions.

On-bike training:
Saturday, May 5, 2018, from 8-2:30PM
Deerfield Park, Irvine
See calendar for map & directions.




Group Riding Rules

The following rules were initially developed by Frank Baker, a long time member of the Veloce Santiago Team, in order to help all cyclists to ride more safely in a paceline environment. They have been updated by Chuck Bramwell and his experience riding in pacelines. These rules will be updated in the future as needed." Veloce Santiago Cycling Club's Team Rules ©2013

1. Don't use Aero Bars while in a paceline. Aero Bars might be a great tool when you are riding solo or at the front of a paceline. However, if you are in the middle of a paceline, the time it takes to get from your Aero Bars to your brakes can be the deciding difference in whether you and those behind you have an accident or not. Keep your hands on your brakes or brake hoods while in a paceline.

2. Don't OVERLAP WHEELS!! This is especially important with some riders -- it can be a formula for disaster. Unless you are an exceptional bike handler riding behind a remarkably steady and predictable rider, the advantage gained by close following or a narrow echelon is not worth the risk of crashing.

3. When on the front, KEEP YOUR HEAD UP, CALL OUT THE JUNK, and WATCH THE LIGHTS. You are responsible for the safety of many riders. Don't let them down. Don't worry about what gear you are in or if you have an acorn in your cluster. Go easy off the lights, give the back time to get going without getting the "whip syndrome".

4. When pulling off the front of a double wide paceline and coming back on the left of the paceline, MAKE SURE THE TRAFFIC IS CLEAR behind the group so that you are not pulling out into traffic. If you are in a single wide paceline, it is usually safer to pull off to the right of the paceline so that you are away from traffic.

5. If you MUST chit chat in the pace line - SKIP THE EYE CONTACT. WATCH THE RIDER IN FRONT OF YOU AND THE TRAFFIC ON THE ROAD - ESPECIALLY AT THE FRONT. When on the front, don't talk: you have too much responsibility. You need to always be aware of what is in front of you, to the side of you and without looking back behind you.

6. Watch the rider in front of you, constantly. Depending on who it is, back off, especially when approaching a challenging rise in terrain or jump in pace. Some people, even on the best of days have an inconsistent speed that causes the bike to go back and forth. Other people brake suddenly or excessively. Know who these people are and stay back from them.

7. Ride in a straight line at a consistent pace. The key to a good paceline is to ride a steady speed. If there are acclerations within the paceline, it hurts everybody, so if one rider is stronger than the others, he doesn't go faster but pulls longer. The weaker riders maintain the speed but take shorter pulls. The paceline then runs at a steady speed which is key.

8. When moving from a seated to a standing position, stay on the power so you do not fall back into the bike behind you. Even some really strong riders tend to do that.

9. Never pass on the right unless you are ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN there is
a) Plenty of room and
b) The rider in front absolutely knows you are coming around..(because you YELLED: COMING BY ON YOUR RIGHT and saw a visible reaction).
Robert might actually disapprove of this under any circumstances - it depends on your bike handling skills and who you are passing.

10. If you find that you can't hold with the paceline that you're in, signal, then pull out of the pace line and back off - don't start thrashing, weaving or gapping. If you are smart, you can jump back on AT THE REAR and get a break too. Unless you are at the tail end of a fast group who is determined to drop you (or you are about to be tandemectomized), back off on the steep or twisty descents.

11. Fixed Gear bikes don't descend, corner, or stop as fast as Freewheel bikes. When riding in pacelines with Fixed Gear bikes, give the Fixed Gear cyclist more room to descend, corner, or slow down. A group of cyclists on Fixed Gear bikes should ride together behind a group on Freewheel bikes so the Fixed Gear bikes can descend, corner, or stop at a different pace.