Fixed Gear Criteria
As the name suggests there are fixie criteria. It is in essence the same as any other criteria but then without shifting. It is very important to know that riding on a fixie can be very dangerous, therefore it is smart to know the way you are going to brake early on and ride with confidence. You can brake by applying backpressure on your rear wheel. This means you will still have full control over your bike and makes you brake by using your legs. “Skidding” as they call the slipping with a fixie is also a possibility, but is not recommended when you are participating in an intense race.
The name says it all: it is a polo on a bike! You can come a long way with a stick and a bike by mounting a fixed chain ring and balancing on your fixie. There are a couple of rules when doing this so let’s take a look:
- You always have 2 teams consisting of 3 players
- Every type of bike is allowed. A fixie is more useful though since you can balance
- The handlebar needs to be plugged
- The stick must be a special Bike Polo stick
- The ball must be a street hockey ball
- The goal is made by 2 orange pins with a bike length in between
- If one of the pins is pushed over it is the responsibility of the person who did it to put it back upright again.
- Start of the game: Both teams are behind the pins and are ready to drive forwards. The ball is in the middle of the playing field and when the 3, 2, 1 GO is being called the game starts.
- The player cannot play with his feet, you will be expelled
- You can only score with a hit. When the ball goes in between the pins when you are dragging it or drive through it with the ball connected to the stick then the goal does not count
- When someone scored the scoring team needs to go back to their own half. The team that did not score can continue the game.
- When someone scored it is recommended to call it so others can keep count of the goals and score.
- You may score from behind the pins, when someone catches it and immediately shoots it the goal does not count
- You may not touch the ground with your feet. When your feet hit the ground you need to go to the side-line and hit the bell which is ready for the players. When you have hit the bell you may continue playing.
- You may touch each other, but do not go too crazy. To make sure no one is acting a fool there are a couple rules. For instance you may not hit a stick with another stick. You are not kicked out of the game if you do so but remember that the other players will not like you!
- The rest is forbidden. Stick against bike, stick against player and so forth. Keep your cool and keep it fun.
- Some games are timed for 10 minutes, while others may continue a bit longer. Maximum 15 minutes playing time per half is the average.
- Substitutes are not included, but you may add them yourself
- To make it more fun the best way to play is best of 5. Of course you can do a best of 10 as well if you have time.
Have a go and see what your friends think about it. We definitely like to play it, and it is worth a try!
Standing still on your fixie
Not really an official event, even though it is done every now and then at the end of a fixed party, but standing still is a real art. Standing still on your fixie can be useful when waiting for the lights to change. Besides that you look cool doing it! The incentive sounds about right to try it.
Alleycat with your fixie
Now we find ourselves at the most widely known form of fixed racing, Alleycats!
An Alleycat race is an informal biking race. Alleycats are often in cities and organised by bike messengers. It is all about attending and participating instead of winning, the essence of an Alleycat is to have fun. You can see a lot of companies sponsoring the events and put together some sick prices. For instance: A lot of the Alleycats have a price for the last person to finish. The first ever Alleycat was organised in Toronto in 1989 and still exists in its original state. During Halloween and Valentine’s Day for the next five years after the first event it continued to be organised. In 1993 when Toronto was organizing its Alleycat word spread fast and the rumours and stories were being told in almost every state to every biker out there who was looking for it. In Berlin in the same year they organised an Alleycat and so it spread. Within a short period of time Alleycat turned into a worldwide phenomenon which you could not ignore anymore.
You can find alleycats everywhere at the moment! In big and small cities all fixie lovers were organising alleycats. The sub cultures of the fixie world are taking over the phenomenon faster than you can imagine.
Benefits of a fixie
The biggest advantage of riding a fixie has to be the weight. Without all the added brakes, gears and other components the weight is being kept down drastically. You can build extremely light weight fixies for the best and coolest events out there. You can go without gears and shifters, derailleurs, cables, cable holders and multiple chain rings.
In bad weather it is pretty handy to ride fixed. Because of the tension and pressure which you put on the rear tire you gain a lot of grip. This is why you can ride through the corners a lot faster with your fixie in wet weather. To be sure you can make those tight corners it is advised to make sure your tires are properly inflated.
Usually people ride without brakes. You brake my giving backpressure on the pedals. When you apply this backpressure you stop your fixie by using your rear wheel gripping on the road you are driving on. Basically blocking your tire.