Strange Bikes

A few years ago I visited the Shimano funded bicycle museum in Japan. During my visit, I saw a bunch of bikes that looked unlike any bikes I had seen before.

The bike above is a Artisic cycling bike. The best way to describe Artisic cycling is its kinda like gymnastics meets flatland BMX. Artisic cycling is a form of competitive indoor cycling in which riders perform tricks for points. The competitions are held in gyms and are performed before judges in six minute rounds by singles, pairs, four, or six-man teams.

The Bikes are fixed geared and the gearing is very low with a one to one ratio. The handlebars can spin 360 degrees and are lined up with the steer tube, so they will remain in the same axis when spinning.

The drivetrain above is from a Cycle Ball bike. Think indoor soccer on bikes. The German name for Cycle Ball is Radball and I agree with the name. The bikes are fixed gear and feature a set of handlebars that look at home on the local rail-trails.

Cycle ball and artistic cycling made its introduction to the USA back in 1984. Check out this vintage video filmed in Colardo during the Coors Classic.


Also, check out a Stayers racing bike I saw at the museum.



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