Thinking of buying a bicycle, but don’t know what it means or symbolizes, can be looked upon as something unnecessary. By understanding its meaning and history, users of these two-wheeled vehicles can appreciate how it evolved to become a huge topic in the transportation industry.
A bicycle represents a mode of transportation, it’s one of the earliest invention being used in the industry for moving goods as well as people from one place to another. Bicycles symbolize the circle of life which is in constant movement; By finding time to recreate or enjoy yourself or with closer friends, you would have developed a unique path for your life.
The bicycle is something many of us take for granted today, cycling is often a quick way of getting from one point to another without having to beat traffic, and provides some free time for wandering around. It is all thanks to a German inventor named Kar von Drais, in 1817, he developed the Velocipede which is the precursor to the modern bicycle. The Technetium in Manhattan is currently showing an exhibit in the history of the bicycle. It was in Manhattan that Kar von took his first ride. His invention bore the hallmarks of the modem bike that we know of today, but only the pedals were missing.
This bike had two wheels of the same size, handlebars and a break. It was an ingenious idea, but sales didn’t immediately go through as expected because their price tag of 40 guilders was more than what many customers earned annually. However, it was to be another 50 years before a pedal powered Velocipede came on the scene with two pedals driving the front wheel. In 1867, it was exhibited at the International Exposition in Paris and went into mass production, yet, it still had its drawbacks.
The velocipede was incredibly heavy because it had a wrought iron frame with no pedals to rest your feet on, you had to take them off the ground and hold them mid-air. Keeping your balance was much more of an issue because you had to rely on imaginary pedals. Later models featured a much larger front wheel of up to one and a half meters in diameter. That meant the bike could go faster, yet, riders were prone to dangerous falls or crushes. Today, such models are only museum pieces, as safety is an important aspect of human life.
The early 1889, saw safety bicycles on the market with two wheels of similar sizes. Here, the rear wheel was chain, just as with modern bikes. By 1900, bicycles became major modes of transport for market traders who promoted their foods or services to long, distant destinations. What started out as a plaything of nobility was now mobilizing the masses, and even women were getting in on such acts. Women who began riding bikes in this period were bold, they had to adjust their clothing as riding a bike with a floor-length skirt would have been difficult. It meant they enjoyed the same freedoms as men; Independent, go out on trips or escape the control of their family.