I’m not really much of a New Year’s Resolution kind of guy. I’m neither for them or against them and do not judge those who do or don’t.
Even though I personally don’t do resolution, it is the time of the year when we are having deep and intense conversations about the current and future helmet lineup at Kali Protectives. They are not really New Year’s Resolutions meetings, but more end of the year strategic planning discussion.
One of the more interesting conversations revolves around the crazy increase in e-bikes sales, the eBike helmet standard and trying to predict whether the new riders on eBikes will be looking for an eBike specific lid.
Which brings me to my New Year’s conundrum. Let me just start by saying I blame my riding partner, Dave. You see, I have spent most of 2020 chasing Dave up and down the hills around my house in San Jose, sometimes keeping pace and sometimes not so much. But now Dave has gone to the darkside. Dave has gone electric. Dave is motor-fied. Dave is batteries included. Dave is riding away from me with a huge grin on his face. Dave has imploded my stance on eMTBs and what I thought was my eMTB strategic plan.
It’s not like I’m opposed to the massive influx of eMTBs onto the scene, but I had convinced myself I didn’t need one. Yet.
I planned on finally giving into the eMTB thing about the same time I was fitted for adult diapers and a stroller. I just had this idea in my head it was for people who couldn’t get up the climbs without assistance or a device to allow your aging body to keep up with the younger, fitter riders.
But there was Dave standing at the trailhead next to his brand new Orbea Rise with a giant, painfully joyous grin on his face.
Dave is neither old, terribly overweight (a small shot at my riding partner) or lacking in fitness. He is a firefighter and he keeps himself pretty dialed. So what gives? Why the motorized assistance and why the giant grin?
Well, according to the grinning fool, he can ride farther, get to more of the “fun” stuff and get just as rowdy as on his “regular” bike, all in the same amount of time.
So what’s the downside? He has to take some good natured ribbing from his riding partners, of which there are now fewer and he can’t take his new whip to trails all over which seem to be banning eMTBs.
Now I just have to weigh through all the reviews to determine which of the crop of new bikes is the right one for me: Pivot Shuttle, Specialized Levo, Santa Cruz Heckler, Orbea Rise, etc…
If you have a second feel free to fill out our survey below to tell me if you have taken the eBike plunge and while you’re at it let me know if you would be willing to buy an eBike specific helmet if it meant the helmet needed to have a little more coverage and the need to be larger due to the increase in the amount of foam to pass the NTA 8776 Dutch eBike safety rating.
You know by now safety is my passion and I’m super interested in where the eBike safety standards are going to go as eBikes get more power, with extended battery life and thus extended time in the saddle. What is the right answer is still unclear, but I’m paying very close attention to the data.
I hope everyone else's New Year’s Resolution and Revelations pan out.