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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so i had this great idea today...in the highly likely event that i don't get a job this summer, i figured i'd flex my volunteer muscles and try to get together some group rides for my church. now, the church is in a rural area, so the roads are one mile apart...once around the "block" is 4 miles, but the whole area is relatively flat. seen as how i'm away at school now, i'd have to start organizing this whole thing in may or so, for the summer...are there any good guides or tips for arranging beginner group rides like this? i'm thinking, things like riding the whole route myself to see just how rideable it is for beginners, possibly finding someone to print some jerseys, and of course, advertising the thing are good areas to start...but, what else can i do?
 

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If you're dealing with beginners, hold a rules of the road & group riding class. Require helmets for the ride. If the rides take place near or after dark, require at least a rear blinky.
 

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One of the things I like most about our club's rides--and this includes both weekday training rides and weekend rides--is that all routes are marked with "Dan Henrys." Because they're marked, there's no really worry about dropping someone or making everyone ride at a set pace. If you can keep up great, but if you get dropped you won't be lost.

One of our better attended weekday training rides splits off into three groups: fast, intermediate and social. It's been a good way to attract new riders without making them feel intimidated but to also give them an incentive to get faster if they so desire.
 

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old_fuji said:
.............tips for arranging beginner group rides like this? .....
If it is for beginners. you could advertise it as a "no drop" ride meaning no one will be left behind to take care of themself alone.

So that means one experienced rider has to ride sweep behind or with the last rider.

We have a Monday ride for "beginners" here but whenever I go out for a recovery ride on Monday and see this group, it seems like the same folks are beginners year after year.

Oh well. I'd get frustrated with that too soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
start small? you mean distance wise? and, how small is small? i could think of a good way to get a mile and a half ride in...pretty much anywhere from about a half mile up to 4 miles is within the realm of what i had imagined, but there is a good long bike path about 5 miles that goes quite a ways
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
well, i did some searching around...turns out my church actually is looking for something like this to build up a community. i have yet to talk to the priest, but my mom says he'd be all behind it...might even join up for a ride or two.

now, as far as setting up different levels of riding...someone said advanced, beginner, and social levels. how far would each of those be? and, how would people be divided into those groups?
 

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old_fuji said:
start small? you mean distance wise? and, how small is small? i could think of a good way to get a mile and a half ride in...pretty much anywhere from about a half mile up to 4 miles is within the realm of what i had imagined, but there is a good long bike path about 5 miles that goes quite a ways

I don't know what MB1 meant, but I think that you should think small in all respects for your beginning -- small distance, small group, etc. Once you work the problems out of the ride, you can grow it.

At a minimum, your planning should include your having ridden the route several times before you take a group out on it. One thing you should do is to ride the route under the same conditions that you would be riding it with the group. For instance, one of my favorite rides is great every day of the week except on Sunday mornings -- there are several churches on the route and if you are riding in the area when one of the churches lets out, there is traffic all over the place on narrow roads. Similarly, there are certain times of the year when the first part of my morning commute -- which goes from west to east -- is in blinding sunlight. You don't want to be riding into the sun if you can help it.
 
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