Cycling: A Sport for All Seasons

Cycling is a sport growing in popularity, and can be enjoyed by people of all sorts of athletic ability.

"I'd definitely love to see it grow as a sport, especially at Auburn, but not to the point of cycling following under NCAA regulations," said cyclist Thomas Williams. "As it is now, a person doesn't have to be a top athlete to race, and we don't have to deal with red tape as varsity sports would."

Many believe cycling is a seasonal sport, but it usually goes year-round.

"I ride a lot on the road over the summer," Williams said. "There is plenty of daylight to ride in either the early morning or in the evening, and I have a lot more time on my hands. This past winter I got into cyclocross, (a sort of combination of road and mountain biking) and I found it to be a great way to stay in shape. I also tend to mountain bike in the winter more; it's easier to stay warm in the woods than on the road."

Some have to practice every day. However, Williams said he does not find it to be typical to find someone to ride with him every day. Riders do not have a set practice time.

"Some new mountain bike trails are being built in Auburn, so I hope to start riding over there, get a few on the trail and ride back," Williams said. "It should end up being a fun workout."

Cycling is an intense workout. The better shape someone is in, the faster they will be when it comes time to race.

"With that said though, we don't have any sort of tryouts to be on the team, and racers are placed in categories based on his or her skill level. I'd actually love to see people of different abilities join next year," Williams said.

Cyclists must be in extremely good physical condition to compete in tournaments.

"The collegiate season runs all year, with mountain biking in the fall, cyclocross in the early winter and road racing in the late winter and early spring," Williams said. "So races can be found all year long. With cyclocross, there are regional race series in both Georgia and Alabama that make it very easy to find a race close by."

Riding is a sport that takes a lot of time and effort. When thinking of sports, cycling may not be the first thing that comes to mind, but it growing in popularity and can be enjoyed by individuals of all abilities.

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