Fixed Gear Bicycles

1558 Words7 Pages
Bicycle riding and other forms of non automotive transportation have drastically diminished since the mass abundance of affordable cars and other automobiles. In today’s day and age, more and more people are using cars to get to places due to its convenience and affordability. Recently however, a phenomenon has occurred resulting in a drastic increase in the popularity of fixed gear bicycling. Fixed gear bicycles or “fixies” are bicycles that have no free wheel (meaning that they cannot coast or ride without pedaling and that the pedals are always moving when the wheels are in motion). At first, these bicycles were mainly used as race bikes used on a track. Now however, fixed gear bicycles are used as street bikes and are seen on city streets and on college campuses. This drastic increase in popularity of fixed gear bicycles among the younger generation could have occurred because of many different reasons. These reasons can include unique way to express an individual’s personality, a longing for people to belong to a group, an outlet for exercise, or just people jumping on the bandwagon of fixed gear riding thinking of it as a new fad. Fixed gear bicycles first started in the use of messenger couriers due to their easy mobility and low maintenance. Because of them, there has been a significant increase in the use of fixed gear bicycles starting from the mid-2000’s and that “… all the college kids want them because they have had courier bags for the last five years and now they want the bike to go with it,” says Jim Wirtan, a courier for 12 years. The affordability and lack of maintenance of fixed gear bicycles contribute a large part to the popularity in them. Young adults and college students do not have much time t... ... middle of paper ... ...fixie riders benefit emotionally and physically. Many other trends and phenomenon seen today are not as beneficial to society such as increase in the violence of movies or the larger food portions fast food chains are giving. Fixed gear riding has contributed to the increase in a large urban subculture while simultaneously increased the activity of Americans today. Since the younger generation is the main bulk of the “movement”, the future can be deduced as one that is more active and less reliant on automobiles. This is also another benefit due to the increasing prices of oil and gas. Overall, the popularity of fixed gear bicycles has had a positive effect on society and should continue to be encouraged our benefit in the future. Why not try one out for yourself; it may be an experience that you will end up enjoying for the rest of your life.
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