Cycling Holidays and Bike Helmets

October 13, 2014 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: France 

Bike helmets on our holidays in France

Compulsory wearing of bike helmets in France is NOT law. We have quite a few cycling guests who arrive thinking it is.

Ok let me start by saying that this post is just my own personal views about mandatory cycling helmet laws and that I have no problems with any of our cycling guests wearing bike helmets. In fact we keep helmets of all different sizes for our guests to save them bringing them to our bike centre.

I never wear a helmet for various reasons.

I find them uncomfortable.

They are too hot in the summer.

On a road bike I get a neck ache as you have to alter your head angle to see properly when in a racing position.

It stops me from just getting on a bike on impulse to go some where.

I don’t believe there is any benefit safety wise.
Ok the last one might surprise you?
There has never, I repeat never, been any study that proves wearing a bicycle helmet is safer than not wearing one.
In fact quite a few studies suggest that it might be safer not to!

No cycle helmets







Studies/statistics for this are very difficult to prove or disprove as you cannot replicate the same conditions over a long period with accidents involving humans.

In fact you can find results that show pedestrians and drivers and passengers of cars are more at risk of a head injury than cyclists. Pedestrians have always been more at risk from vehicles than when riding a bike.

Why are people not wearing helmets at all times then?
Cycling is not dangerous compared to lots of other sporting or every day activities.
There is only one death per 32 million kilometres cycled. (UK)
In fact cycling regularly increases your life expectancy.

No cycle helmets in Amsterdam?








However you can find lots of provable statistics that shows cycle use drops dramatically once helmets are made compulsory.

Australia was the first country in the world to do so and their cycling rates have never recovered. In fact Queensland want to rescind the law but the government veto stops them doing so.

Every country that brings in compulsion shows a drop in commuter cycling and an increase in car traffic. When obesity rates are rising surely it would make sense to encourage cycling?

Israel and Mexico stopped their compulsory laws, some provinces in Canada have them but are not all enforced, but still saw a drop in cycling.

So I am in favour of personal choice, wear one if you want to but don’t make it compulsory and stop the incorrect claims of safety with a helmet.


Further reading:

Bicycle research  foundation

Freestyle Cyclists (Australia)


Bike helmets at our Biking Centre in France

Google our Biking Holidays in France

October 5, 2014 by · Comments Off on Google our Biking Holidays in France
Filed under: France, Lot Cycling holidays 

Google our biking holidays in France

We started our biking holidays seven years ago last September after a first year of renovation and preparation.

At the beginning it was obviously difficult to have our brand new website on page one of Google so we went down the Adwords route. Paying to have our site listed above the normal search results. This can be a very expensive way of attracting bikers! For instance the phrase “cycling holidays in France” can cost about 6€ a click. That means every time someone clicks on our advert it costs 6€, even if they only spend a few seconds on our site. Twenty clicks and that’s 120€ gone.

So with my previous experience as an IT lecturer I thought I could get us on page one organically.

At first I was quite successful but recently the competition has really got intense with some of our bigger competitors having staff full time working on this aim.

Google of course keep changing the goal posts so that no one really knows how they list your site anymore.

There are now so many factors involved it’s become a minefield.

We ended up paying a company to help us with our SEO ‘Search Engine Optimisation) but had no success at all with them.

So it’s back to just me. I spend at least three hours a day trying to make our site relevant and up to date, continually changing content.

Of course now it also involves social media.

So update our website regularly.

Here are our social media sites that Google think we should be using and updating mostly on a daily basis:



twitter about our biking centre in France



facebook page about our bikingholidays in France





Find us on Google+



youtube videos of our biking center in France



pins of The Lot Valley and our center


This blog

Blog about us



Then of course there’s LinkedInn where we have a presence but don’t really use it that much.

We also have individual Google+ sites for our tours plus I run a Cycling in France Google+ Community page.

All the SEO “experts” say we must  blog at least twice a week and upload videos to Youtube on a weekly basis.

So when cycling guests say “what do you do in your time off” I usually reply work harder than when we are running our tours!

Of course gradually we are getting more and more returning guests and are receiving personally recommended cyclists.


PS we are still not on page one of Google so I have a another challenging winter of SEOing.


Google at our Biking Centre

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