Personal Liability Concerns

Before each of you get on the bike, out of mutual respect to one other, complete the Assumption of Risk, Waiver of Liability and Indemnity Agreement (download a PDF of the waiver) and retain a copy of your tandem partner’s waiver.

Bicycling is an inherently dangerous activity and through no fault of either the captain or the stoker, accidents can and do occur. Both captain and stoker should carry the following: I.D., medical info (allergy, health conditions, insurance), contact numbers and phone. Tell each other where to find the info, in your jersey or in the bike bag. The bike’s owner is responsible for ensuring that basic repair tools are on the bike, such as a pump, tire levers, and extra tubes, at a minimum.

If you are new to riding tandems, please read our Tandem Tutorial. It will get you started, describing the starting and stopping procedures, and how to communicate with your partner. For your first ride with a new tandem partner, complete a short familiarization ride in a large, empty parking lot or on a quiet neighborhood street. Rehearse starting, stopping and other procedures in this distraction-free environment before dealing with cars, stoplights, and other cyclists. For the first longer ride, try to join a group ride. Riding with a tandem club would be ideal. Stokers, if your first ride with a new captain can’t be with a group, bring a friend along with you. Your friend can ride a single bike or follow in a car. If the ride goes poorly, your friend can get the car or wait with you while the captain rides back alone on the bike to get the car. On that first longer ride, select a route that is as car-free and as flat as possible. Anytime you ride with a new partner, you need to talk on the bike, so pick a ride without a lot of car and truck noise. Also, the fewer stop signs and stop lights the better. Climbing and descending requires additional skills and confidence, so add hills on future rides.