What is the bike used for?
The bicycle is a vehicle that is only powered by human muscle power. It usually consists of two wheels, a saddle to sit on and a handlebar. All of this is held together by a frame made of tubes.
There are many types of bicycles: racing bike, mountain bike, i.e. Maunten-Beik, tricycle, recumbent bike, the electric e-bike, i.e. I-beik, cargo bike, folding bike, art bike and many others. Depending on what the bicycle is used for, these special bicycles have been developed.
How does a bike work?
If you were to sit on a bicycle saddle while standing, you would fall over. However, when you are driving it is possible to keep your body in balance. For the ride, the person sitting on the bicycle saddle has to step on two pedals. These move a chain, which then sets the rear wheel in motion. The front wheel is connected to a handlebar so that you can change direction while driving. Body weight also helps when cornering.
In order to stop, there are brakes that must be operated with the right and left hand on the handlebars. This means that the front and rear wheels can be braked independently of each other. Some bikes also have a coaster brake. This brakes the rear wheel when the pedals are not pedaled forwards, but backwards. There is also a bell on the handlebars to draw attention to yourself in the event of danger. Mudguards over the wheels prevent too much dirt and rainwater from splashing up from the wheels.
Is cycling dangerous?
If you want to drive a car, you need a driver's license. You don't need that for the bike, but it has to be roadworthy. All parts of the bike have to work, especially the brakes, lights and reflectors. In addition, the cyclist must be able to ride safely. This means, for example, that the saddle must be at the right height so that the cyclist can put his foot on the ground at any time. A bicycle helmet protects your head in the event of an accident.
When it's dark, it's better to only wear light-colored clothing. Reflective strips reflect the light from car headlights. This is also good to be seen. Reflectors must be installed on the tires, pedals, and front and rear.
Some streets have a cycle lane at the edge. Then you have to ride your bike there and not on the street. Children up to 8 years of age are only allowed to drive on the sidewalk. Children aged 10 and over should drive on the street. Children between 8 and 10 can choose.
When was the bicycle invented?
About 200 years ago, people first tried to build a "running bike". The inventor of the first walking machine in 1817 was Karl Drais from Karlsruhe. His handcar, a forerunner of the wooden bicycle, did not yet have pedals. You always had to push yourself off the ground with your feet. The wheels at that time were very cumbersome. They could weigh up to 40 kilograms.
Fifty years later, the "Velocipede" was invented in France. It had pedals on the front wheel and was also made entirely of wood. But a little later, such bicycles were made of metal. These bikes were very popular and were copied by many workshops. There have been occasional bike races.
The bicycle spoke was an important invention in 1868. Until then, the spokes were made of wood. The new, thin steel wires weighed much less than wood or metal. In addition, they cannot break, which often happened with wooden structures. They are still built and used in much the same way today.
The bicycle chain was invented in England in 1884. This made steering much easier because the feet no longer moved with every steering movement. The chain was the prerequisite for idling. With idling, it was no longer necessary to keep moving your feet while riding until the bike came to a standstill again. The chain circuit was also able to be invented through the chain. The derailleur shifts the chain on the rear wheel to a smaller or larger sprocket. So you can drive faster or get up a hill more easily.
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