Cycling Slang: Sample of Ten

By George

Here are a few relevant selections from the plethora of examples of cycling slang out there, that will seem familiar to many of the newbies amongst us… although I’m quite committed to avoiding a “crayon”.

amateur mark — Grease mark on the leg (also known as Cat. 5 tattoo or a sprocket bite).


bug gulp — Swallowing a flying insect whole, without chewing, which is preferable in my book.

bus stop flop — That humiliating experience when you fail to un-clip fast enough at a stop sign or junction and flop over on your side. I also call it a Cliptastrophy.

brick — Bad climber, good descender. Opposite of: kite.  Isn’t everyone?

cavemanned it — Rode hard. (something I have to do all the time to keep up with James)

compound disappearing hill — A hill where no matter how long you climb, you’re never more than half the way up. This may well develop into a psychosis in the Pyrenees.

crayon — A crash that results in major road rash “crayoning the road”.

Photomodel in a black bodysuit
A ‘Doris strutting her stuff

coupon, bike coupon — Certificates implicitly granted by spouses, significant others, or bosses which permit participation in cycling related activity. Bike coupons have a fixed value, so that longer and more disruptive activities cost more coupons. Usage: “I can’t make that sportive, I spent my coupons last weekend at the hilly 100”.

Doris — (rare) Female version of  ‘Fred’.

Fred — Derisive term used by “serious” road cyclists to describe other cyclists who do not conform to serious road cyclists’ norms with regard to dress and equipment, and appear amateurish to them. My fondness for trainer socks and vest tops apparently falls into this category, as does my penchant for smiling and singing.


2 thoughts on “Cycling Slang: Sample of Ten

  1. I managed a bus-stop flop yesterday! However it was an amazing morning and we heard the first cuckoo of the Summer and had a fly past by a Barn Owl – very inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

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