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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I know there are quite a few threads out there on passing etiquette and it seems like people have varying opinions. But I'm wondering if there's a way to pass people without looking like I'm trying to impress someone or be competitive or any of that... Maybe I'm just self-conscious but whenever I pass people, I always feel... I dunno... rude?... mean?... This is especially true when I'm passing riders of the female persuasion. I don't wanna ride behind them for too long cause I don't wanna seem like a freakin creeper, but I don't wanna pass them cause I don't wanna seem like a competitave a$$hole... what do I do???

Oh and just a little background info or whatever, I have the same problem in my car (wanting to pass people, that is) which, ironically, is why I'm now riding a bike (too many tickets).
 

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Well, a stick in the spokes is more mean, and 'move it a-hole' is more rude. I think a simple "on your left" does the trick without meaning anything else.

I'm pretty sure passing a dude who has 95 miles in when you're on your 10th mile won't make him feel like...like...well, anything. You're just passing people. Seriously.
 

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haole from the mainland
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Just do it. As long as you're not doing something sketchy/unsafe or dickish (e.g., passing a chick in a tri that has just passed you and then slowing down), don't worry about it. Riders come in different speeds; if you're slow you're going to get passed. If someone gets pissed, it's his/her problem, not yours.

And I say this as a rider of the female persuasion that is more often the passee than the passer.
 

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Yeah I too actually have this same problem. I always feel pretentious when passing and saying "on your left" but on the other hand i feel like im a dick for saying nothing. I dunno, maybe im just crazy. I feel your pain MWPDX.
 

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I like the BIG RING
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Just don't flip the bird

Simple....say, "on your left"......come along side....right handed wave....say, "have a great day"....pedal on.

Courtesy is contagious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
BikeLV702 said:
Yeah I too actually have this same problem. I always feel pretentious when passing and saying "on your left" but on the other hand i feel like im a dick for saying nothing. I dunno, maybe im just crazy. I feel your pain MWPDX.
[email protected]!!! I'm a fairly non-vocal person by nature so I don't usually say anything... But I never know what they think of me... and I know, I know, it's not important what other people think... but... it kinda is, yaknow?
 

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After you pass somebody, keep pedaling. It seems a regular occurrence that people pass me and then stop pedaling (especially on downhills), which means a short time later I pass them back without modifying my speed.

I do like it if people say something when they pass, if only a "hey".

And if you get passed, don't let it get to you. It's tempting to assume that the passer thinking "he's such a loser". But really he's thinking, "I'm such a stud." He's not thinking about you at all.
 

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BikeLV702 said:
Yeah I too actually have this same problem. I always feel pretentious when passing and saying "on your left" but on the other hand i feel like im a dick for saying nothing. I dunno, maybe im just crazy. I feel your pain MWPDX.
I often say "hi, how's it going?" as I go by. Or I wave. Sometimes I don't say anything. But there's a lot of cyclists on parts of my rides and it gets old saying something to every one that I pass. Most places that's not a problem.
 

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I think it is a safety issue as well as a courtesy thing. Give folks a few seconds warning that you are passing and they are far less likely to swerve into your path and cause a crash. At least I think so. I usually either do the "on your left" or "bike left" as I pass. I also tend to pass alot of peds, as I frequent multi-use greenways and paths.
 

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and exactly..

MWPDX said:
Ok, so I know there are quite a few threads out there on passing etiquette and it seems like people have varying opinions. But I'm wondering if there's a way to pass people without looking like I'm trying to impress someone or be competitive or any of that... Maybe I'm just self-conscious but whenever I pass people, I always feel... I dunno... rude?... mean?... This is especially true when I'm passing riders of the female persuasion. I don't wanna ride behind them for too long cause I don't wanna seem like a freakin creeper, but I don't wanna pass them cause I don't wanna seem like a competitave a$$hole... what do I do???

Oh and just a little background info or whatever, I have the same problem in my car (wanting to pass people, that is) which, ironically, is why I'm now riding a bike (too many tickets).
what is wrong with being competitive?
just pass people as you go your own speed...there's little to worry about.
those that comment or complain or crack some remark can stick it...its their problem if they're feeling "slow". just give them 3-4' of space and be on your own way..

I've had a number of people say things to me when I'm on my hill circuits on training rides...things like "You go man, go win that race!" or whatever...my response is generally "If this was a race, I would have passed you long ago" 99% of the time however, nobody says a word...as they're too busy sucking wind.
 

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Different worlds

bahueh said:
I've had a number of people say things to me when I'm on my hill circuits on training rides...things like "You go man, go win that race!" or whatever...my response is generally "If this was a race, I would have passed you long ago" 99% of the time however, nobody says a word...as they're too busy sucking wind.
That's curious. I have passed 100s of people every week for years, and NO ONE has ever said anything other than a casual greeting. It must be a different world where you live!
 

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"On your left" as you are about to pass, then a simple 'how ya doin'" or "howdy" or whatever, even just a freindly nod. But don't ever, ever just pass without uttering anything. That's just arrogance, plain and simple.
 

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scruffy nerf herder
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Ha, too funny!

Kerry Irons said:
That's curious. I have passed 100s of people every week for years, and NO ONE has ever said anything other than a casual greeting. It must be a different world where you live!
Maybe he does his intervals on the MUT. I would be pissy if someone for whatever reason is doing a bazillon miles on a trail meant for beginners/joggers/families... etc. I, as a rider would say something especially if he was being dangerous or inappropriate for the environment.

But my answer to the OPs question is just say hey, or a something polite. On your left... to me... often sounds... I dont know.... odd. When passing joggers or slower riders, it often takes a second for them to process the sound. Their normal tendency is to look back... often causing them to veer, sometimes directly into your path. Therefore I don't typically say anything other than a polite greeting. Sometimes I will ride alongsides and yap for a second. If they are going about your speed, and it is taking a while for you to over take them... just make sure they know you are there.

Don't be an a$$.
 

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logansites said:
A little pat on the butt never hurts either.

Hmmm. Cycling already gets a bad rep for being gay. Maybe we should leave the pats on the butt to other "well established" sports. Just a thought. lol :p

<a href="https://s7.photobucket.com/albums/y281/Computer_N3rd/?action=view&current=untitled.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="https://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y281/Computer_N3rd/untitled.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>
 

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Meow!
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MWPDX said:
[email protected]!!! I'm a fairly non-vocal person by nature so I don't usually say anything... But I never know what they think of me... and I know, I know, it's not important what other people think... but... it kinda is, yaknow?
If you're going to ride, you need to get comfortable vocalizing, especially if you ride with a group. If the situation warrants--and it often does--announce your presence in any manner that seems appropriate. Safety first.

As for what people think when you pass them as others have said, who cares? This isn't a question of your integrity, reputation, credibility, character, etc. It's just cycling. I would venture to guess that the average person you pass--male or female--doesn't give it any thought. Just be safe and courteous and don't worry about the rest of it. I would note that female egos aren't as fragile as you may think. We get passed; we pass people ourselves.

The only people who irritate me in passing me are the ones who fly by only to then slow down, resulting in a vicious game of yo yo. There are few people in my cycling club who are notorious for this. We have nicknames for them--and they aren't nice.

Ride. Have fun.
 

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To the OP, I'm glad that you are concerned with proper manners on the bike. We need more biker's like you. I've been passed by plenty and have passed plenty. Simple rule of thumb is treat other's how you like to be treated.

I remember being passed by someone about 1 month ago. It was my slow pedal time between intervals and I was tired from the previous interval...I simply wasn't paying as much attention to my surroundings as I should have. The guy came up to me, and screamed "excuse me, could you move?" very rudely passing me. I could tell by his stroke that he was pretty new to cycling and it seemed he was just caught up in the moment that he was actually passing someone. As we climbed the hill, my next interval approached and I had to start riding my butt off. I caught up to the guy who passed me and simply said "passing left please", he turned around with a shocked face and didn't know what to say. I hope he learned to just be a little more courteous.
 

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This is certainly becoming more of an issue in Vancouver as more people are getting on bikes to avoid paying for gas.

For years I've passed by coming up behind, matching their pace, saying "on your left" (try to wait for a reaction, say it louder if not) then pass, and never had problems.

Twice in the last week now, the other cyclist swore at me when I did it -- I think being so startled by hearing a voice.

This is on the road, not an MUT where expectations are different.
 
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