Boy Scout Archives: Cycling Merit Badge
Since 1911, hundreds of thousands of Scouts have made the most of their two-wheel adventures by earning the Cycling merit badge. Whether you just got your first bicycle or have been cycling for years, you will learn more about your bike and what it can do by working on the requirements for this badge.
Either the Cycling merit badge OR the Hiking merit badge OR the Swimming merit badge is required for the rank of Eagle Scout. Scouts who earn more than one of these badges may count the additional badges as electives.
Cycling Merit Badge Requirements
- Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that could occur while cycling, including hypothermia, heat reactions, frostbite, dehydration, insect stings, tick bites, snakebites, blisters, and hyperventilation.
- Clean and adjust a bicycle. Prepare it for inspection using a bicycle safety checklist. Be sure the bicycle meets local laws.
- Show your bicycle to your counselor for inspection. Point out the adjustments or repairs you have made. Do the following:
- Show all points that need oiling regularly.
- Show points that should be checked regularly to make sure the bicycle is safe to ride.
- Show how to adjust brakes, seat level and height, and steering tube.
- Describe how to brake safely with foot brakes and with hand brakes.
- Show how to repair a flat. Use an old bicycle tire.
- Take a road test with your counselor and demonstrate the following:
- Properly mount, pedal, and brake, including emergency stops.
- On an urban street with light traffic, properly execute a left turn from the center of the street; also demonstrate an alternate left-turn technique used during periods of heavy traffic.
- Properly execute a right turn.
- Demonstrate appropriate actions at a right-turn-only lane when you are continuing straight.
- Show proper curbside and road-edge riding. Show how to ride safely along a row of parked cars.
- Cross railroad tracks properly.
- Describe your state’s traffic laws for bicycles. Compare them with motor-vehicle laws. Know the bicycle safety guidelines.
- Avoiding main highways, take two rides of 10 miles each, two rides of 15 miles each, and two rides of 25 miles each. You must make a report of the rides taken. List dates, routes traveled, and interesting things seen.*
- After fulfilling requirement 8, lay out on a road map a 50-mile trip. Stay away from main highways. Using your map, make this ride in eight hours.
* The bicycle must have all required safety features. It must be registered as required by your local traffic laws.
Physical Fitness Troop Program Feature for Boy Scouts The physical fitness troop program feature offers the opportunity to introduce concepts of exercise diet, and healthy habits in a troop setting.
50 Miler Award The 50 Miler award recognizes Scouts who go the distance, literally. This recognition can be earned by Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, Venturers, and Scout leaders. If your unit is planning a trek, your members might be able to earn this award.
BSA Methods - The Outdoors One of the methods for Boy Scouts is “the outdoors”. Being outdoors presents Boy Scouts with challenges and adventures. Boys enjoy the independence of getting away from home and taking care of themselves.
BSA Bike Safety Guidelines BSA has a list of bike safety guidelines on the Scouting.org site. The guidelines and procedures apply to all BSA unit, council, and national program activities involving bicycling.
Cycling Merit Badge for Boy Scouts We haven't had anyone earn this badge in recent memory. The Scouts in our troop always earn the Swimming merit badge their first year at summer camp. The troop does go out riding occasionally, especially on Grant's Trail which is very close to us. They have considered doing a longer camping/biking trip on the Katy Trail, but no Scout has stepped forward to plan that yet
Powdered Sports Drink Recipe Sports drinks like Gatorade or Power Aid are designed to replenish the water and salt your body loses when you are active or exercising. You can mix up your own powdered mix to accomplish this for a fraction of the cost of purchasing these drinks by the bottle.
Bicycle Riding Log For some cycling recogintions, Scouts must record the time or distance spent riding. A basic log sheet is located at the bottom of this post to help you complete this. If you really become interested in cycling, you might consider getting a simple bike computer to aid you in figuring out this data. These devices record the time spent riding, mileage, average speed, and more.
Bicycle Helmet Fitting This month I am focusing on cycling. Helmets are required for all BSA cycling activities. It is important to note that this applies to adults also. Your helmet isn't going to do you much good if it doesn't fit correctly. Here are some guidelines.
Bike Repair Tips This month I am focusing on cycling. If you are going to ride a bike, you'd better make sure it is in good repair first. You don't want to be riding along and have your front wheel fall off or your brakes not work. I found a great website called How To Fix Bikes which offers all sorts of advice on - drum roll... - how to fix bikes!
Bike Inspection Checklist Before riding a bike, Scouts should know how to do an inspection of the bicycle and check that it is in working order. The checklist below will give you a good starting point. You will need to explain each step to the Scouts so they learn the terminology and why each part is important.
Cycling Theme I am featuring a Bikes theme this month. This theme has lots of useful information for Cub Scouts, but much of it applies to Boy Scouts and Venturers also. Boy Scouts can use the aids you will see this month with the Cycling merit badge. And Venturers will find this information useful for the Cycling/Mountain Biking elective for the Ranger Award.
National Outdoor Badges - Riding When I first looked at this badge, I didn’t realize that riding covers both horseback riding and bike riding, Hopefully your Boy Scout troop program includes one or both of those activities.
Requirements and Helps for Boy Scout Merit Badges You can learn about sports, crafts, science, trades, business, and future careers as you earn merit badges. There are more than 100 merit badges.
Bike Hike Safety and Etiquette Before going on a bicycle ride with a group of Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, or Venturers, review some bike safety and etiquette rules. Includes a printable discussion aid.