I spent the afternoon converting a friend’s Co-Motion Nor’Wester drop-bar touring bike into an upright, all-weather city bike. He’s been primarily riding the bike in the city for the past couple of years, and with no tours on the horizon, we both thought he’d enjoy the bike more if it was set-up appropriately for the type of riding he does everyday. Here’s the parts list:
- Nitto North Road Handlebars
- Thomson Elite Stem
- Paul Canti Levers
- Shimano Dura-Ace Bar-End Shifters
- Brooks B67 Saddle
- Velo Orange Stainless Steel Fenders
- Cork Grips
- Paul Gino Light Mounts
- Fenix LD20 Headlights
- Planet Bike Superflash Stealth Tail Light
We’re both extremely happy about how the project turned out. Everything came together nicely to create what is an attractive and highly functional bike for getting around in the city.
We’re pleased to welcome our newest sponsor, Portland Design Works (look for their banner in the sidebar). From PDW:
We fell in love with cycling long ago. Years of fixing flats at the shop, gritting it out at races, braving icy commutes and eating instant noodles led us to a conclusion: this is all we’ve ever done and all we want to do.
Urban riding is where our passion lies because of how accessible it is. It’s riding you can do in normal clothes right out your front door. So we began designing products that we as urban riders would want to use. Our goal was to make these products beautiful, simple and useful: Portland Design Works (PDW) was born.
We chose Portland as a home for the company because we figured you’d start a surf company near great waves or a wind farm on a vast plain. Likewise, we started our company in Portland because the bike-friendly culture allows tons of folks to get around easily by bike. It’s in this great urban cycling atmosphere that we design and test our products. Portland Design Works echoes the urban cycling culture we find inspiring.
Anyway, we think we’ve come up with some great stuff and hope you enjoy it.
Dan, Erik & Lars
Current members of the Adventure Cycling Association can now access full issues of Adventure Cyclist magazine online in PDF format.
The physical benefits of regular exercise are universally accepted, and the mental health benefits—particularly as they relate to anxiety and depression—are becoming more widely acknowledged as well. According to a study presented at the American College of Sports Medicine’s Annual Meeting in 2010, we may be able to add anger management to the list. From the ACSM:
A research team assessed angry mood and emotions in 16 collegiate men high in “trait anger.” The subjects viewed anger-inducing scenes before and after 30 minutes of leg-cycling exercise at 65 percent of their maximal oxygen uptake. The investigators measured oscillatory brain activity, the event-related late-positive potential (LPP), and self-reports of anger intensity during picture viewing.
“The major novel finding from this study is that exercise protected against angry mood induction, almost like taking aspirin to prevent a heart attack,” said lead investigator Nathaniel Thom, Ph.D., a stress physiologist.
In another paper, published in 2005 in the International Journal of Environmental Health Research, researchers from the University of Essex confirmed something that most of us bicycle riders already knew intuitively: as little as five minutes a day of exercise in a natural environment can improve mental health. The activities studied included walking, gardening, cycling, fishing, boating, horse-riding and farming. From the study:
Our findings suggest that exercise in pleasant environments may have a greater effect than
exercise alone on blood pressure, an important measure of cardiovascular health, and on
measures that are relevant to mental health. We conclude that green exercise has important
implications for public and environmental health. A fitter and emotionally more content
population would clearly cost the economy less as well as reducing individual human
The message here? Ride your bike and participate in active transportation on a daily basis to be a happier and healthier person!
Mind the Gap is a multi-platform documentary series produced and directed by Laura J. Lukitsch, founder of Global Performance Media. The project looks at sustainable urban transportation and the challenges we face as we move away from car-centricity toward more livable cities. The webisode portion of the project includes 5 short films on urban biking and car-free living.
[via Utility Cycling]