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Featuring the Specialized Jett: fits better, for longer. Photo Credit: Specialized Bicycles

When is an appropriate age to start including kids into bike adventures?

1 year is the recommended age provided by the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) where babies develop the neck strength required to support the weight of a helmet and to keep their head from bobbing when riding over bumps.

Once your kiddo turns 1, there are many child bike gear options we carry at Skirack which are explained below, starting with the most important: a bike helmet.

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Ellie and Clarke run at the Lake Champlain Waterfront Marina in Burlington, Vermont. Photo: Zach Walbridge.

So you’ve decided to start running, congratulations! Building up a habit of running can have lifelong health benefits, create lasting friendships, and generate endless fun. Starting out can often be the hardest part so here are a few tips and tricks to get you out the door and keep you moving through your runs!

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Comments | Posted in Expert Tips Running By Jack Mitchell

On a hot day, Ellie runs along the Lake Champlain Waterfront in Burlington, Vermont. Photo: Zach Walbridge.

Exercising in the heat can create many challenges. Hydrating, food intake, proper clothing choice, and many other factors are essential to keeping you out there on a sweltering day. Many people think water is the key to a hot day...sure it is...but you NEED electrolytes or your body will suffer. It is also important to understand how to carry your fluids as well. This can carry over to not only hot days, but any training day. I am going to break it down for you to help with training, racing, and general exercise during those hot days.

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Take the time to wash mud or road grit off your bike - it's worth the extra effort. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

Whether you are riding around the latest and greatest the bike industry has to offer, an old school relic, or the die-hard four season commuter, admittedly as a cyclist, you care about the bike you are on. Keeping your bicycle running smoothly will only ensure the longevity of the bike, its performance, and the overall enjoyment you will get out of every ride.

While many tunes and services are best left for your friendly local bike shop, the first and foremost is something everyone who rides is capable of maintaining.

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Comments | Posted in Service Bicycling Expert Tips Electric Bikes By Spencer Lewis

Hiking at Hunger Mountain in Waterbury, Vermont. Photo: Zach Walbridge

There is nothing better than getting out and exploring new trails. This past year has been challenging to navigate but one silver lining is more people discovering the outdoors. Hiking is easily accessible with a low cost of entry. If you have a trail near you, or a way to get to some trails....boom! You are now hiking!

There are some ways to increase the hiking experience and I will provide a few tips along with a couple of my favorite Vermont spots.

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It's Not Me, It's You. When To Break Up With Your Running Shoes.

The purpose of exercise is to stress your body in a way that makes it stronger and healthier and gives you a feeling of well being. Whether it’s walking or running on roads or trails or something else, it’s important to pick a shoe that feels good on your feet with the proper fit.

Your running shoes are more than just cool looking fashion items, they are lightweight protective devices for your feet. Your personal experience may vary, but running shoes are generally expected to provide support and cushioning for 300-500 miles, depending on your physique and how you use them. And most of you tend to replace your shoes within six to twelve months.

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Comments | Posted in Expert Tips Running By Sam Hewitt

Gravel biking is a great way to still ride while the trails are closed. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

As mountain bikers, getting through the ups and downs of the Vermont fifth season aka "mud season" can be challenging. One week, trails are dry and open - and the next week, they are closed due to rain (or even snow).

To get through this difficult time, we have come up with 5 things you can do instead of biking on the trails.

Keep up-to-date on trail status, find your Vermont Mountain Bike Association chapter and learn more about mud season at: vmba.org).

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Comments | Posted in News Bicycling Expert Tips By Michelle Peters

Measuring a customer's feet is the first step of the run shoe fit process at Skirack. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

A properly fitting running shoe influences three factors in your running and walking experience: injury reduction, comfort, and performance.

Having a shoe that is fit by a trained shoe fitter that has evaluated the way your ankle and arch moves can help determine the appropriate shoe category for your foot. The shoe category is correlated with the level of support in a shoe and is broken down into neutral, guidance, support, and motion control. Too much or too little support could potentially lead to injury or discomfort.

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Exploring Vermont via bike. Photo Credit: Zach Walbridge.

The Popularity of Bikes

Are you feeling cooped up and ready to get outside during 2021? You’re not alone! The past year of travel restrictions and unprecedented challenges have changed all of our lives. One silver lining is that more people have taken up new outdoor hobbies as a way to get out of the house, get back into shape, or safely socialize while relaxing and enjoying the outdoors.

Bicycles have always been a great way to get out in the fresh air, and in the summer of 2020, their popularity skyrocketed. Everyone desired the utility, freedom, and ability to explore that a bicycle provides. As a direct result of their newfound popularity, every type of bike, from kids bikes to electric bikes, have been in demand like never before.

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Comments | Posted in News Bicycling Expert Tips Electric Bikes By Cooper Willsey

Electric bikes used to have a specific market - people who needed assistance in order to ride. But the market is quickly changing to everyone. Photo Credit: Specialized Bicycles.

What is an electric bike?

As electric motor technology progresses, so does the diversity of how it can be applied in two-wheeled machines. The “electric bike” umbrella encompasses a vast array of battery-powered cycles, but they are certainly not all created equal.

The term e-bike in the cycling world refers to pedal-assist bikes. This type of bike requires you to at least do some of the work. As you pedal, the motor will engage and add power to the rear wheel. The bike can achieve this in a few different ways that I’ll discuss shortly, but more sophisticated systems will actually work in harmony with the rider, basing the amount of power the motor puts out on how hard the rider is pushing the pedals. The way I like to think about a pedal-assist electric bike is that it’s just like I’m riding a regular bicycle, but with the fantastic illusion that I’ve magically gained the superhuman fitness of a Tour De France rider overnight. This feeling can be shared by anyone.

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