Riding a Bike vs Driving a Car

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Brian Morris
Dr. Bunnell
11/25/2012

Revised Draft Compare/Contrast Essay

Young children always hit that age where all they want to do is learn how to ride a bike; well for the most part young children. They pray for a new bicycle for Christmas and the day hits them like homework on a school night, that they most likely forgot about. Many have the audacity to try to learn without training wheels, but usually fail. Over time they start to realize there are bigger and better things in life such as learning how to drive a car. They constantly beg their parents to let them practice driving or to get their hands on a pair of new car keys. Both learning how to drive a car and learning how to ride a bicycle surprisingly have many differences as well as similarities. Learning how to ride a bike starting off to some may seem easy, but is generally difficult to most. Learning this is one of the most popular as well as important tasks to growing up. One's body is simply not used to the gravitational pull and balance when their feet begin liftoff, ending at the landing zone of the foot pedals. Most require the assistance of training wheels to begin practice of riding a bike. With these, there is a total of four wheels, making little to no individual balancing skill. Training wheels also help people learn to control their pedaling speed, movement, and turning. Once training wheels are taken off, the true test to be passed is about to begin. These next few steps to riding a bike with perfection are much different than learning how to drive a car. Stumbling and falling over is a constant problem when starting to ride a bike. On the other hand, a person cant fall over when driving in a car! With practice, learning to ride in a straight line eventually is a “piece of cake”. Next is learning how to turn while pedaling forward. The trick is not to lean one's entire body while turning. This will simply makes people lose their balance and therefore, fall. Again, practice is key to be able to turn correctly with a stabilized balance. Finally, braking is the final thing to learn. This is the simplest, and can be done with little practice. Brakes are located by the handlebars on a bicycle, while the brakes are located by the feet when driving. Some people say learning to sync one's feet to use the brakes in a car is like learning how to write with another hand. When one can fully ride a bicycle, there are huge advantages and differences over driving a car. First, people can get fit from riding a bicycle around! Sitting in a car seat instead of pedaling with legs is not going to help someone lose weight. Yet another difference between the two is cars release pollutants into the atmosphere, while bicycles release 100% clean energy. Teenagers go crazy the day they hear, “Congratulations, you passed your drivers exam”. To be able to hear those magic words, it takes true time and dedication. The day a teenager obtains their learners permit, their world changes. They start obsessing about learning how to drive but there are abilities that need to be learned. First, they must learn how to properly use the gas and brake pedals. This may be one of the easiest to some, but the hardest to others. A common error is confusing the brake between the gas which can be extremely drastic. Next, they must learn how to turn, and to be able to understand their surroundings. Drivers need to know much more about their surroundings, than bicyclists in general. There are literally hundreds of street signs that must be interpreted to get a drivers license. On the contrary, there are little to no street signs used for bicyclists, except in some areas. Finally, practicing to drive in a variety of weather conditions are the final skill that must be achieved to be a good driver. Snow and rain are the major weather types that make driving, as well as bicycling difficult. Driving a car legally is a privilege and truly has distinct...
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