Cycling, whether recreational, sport or commute is a unique experience that is good for the body, mind and environment. However because of poor infrastructures we regularly deal with road range that after a few hours, days, turn something that should be fun and enjoyable into something dangerous and stressful.
many people end up giving up on the bikes and just walk, although that's great too.
But what if we could mix both?
In the 1990s, Finn Hannu Vierikko designed what is now considered the best long-distance scooter, the Kickbike. Over the years the brand has built a reputation in the sporting environment and soon other brands have come up offering equal products. These vehicles, which are not a bicycle neither an ordinary scooter, have been dubbed footbikes.
The footbike movement has grown and today are used not only as sports vehicles, but utility vehicles, especially the most compact ones.
In the city a footbike can be used in combination with sidewalks and road, although it's restricted in some countries. For instance in Portugal, a non-electric scooter can be used on sidewalks, with due sense and respect for pedestrians.
In 2018 we started testing the Kickbike 20" model and designing what we consider to be the best footbike for everyday use whether on the go to work, in combination with public transport. In 2019 we ask Hannu about having a Kickbike in the Veli portfolio and he kindly accepted it.
Veli footbike was born :)
Veli footbike offers the same bike feeling, with some body benefits and safety. The speed won't be the same, but it's much faster than a conventional scooter or even less performing bikes. It all depends on our legs, just like a single speed bike. There are world records of considerable speed reached by these footbikes. However their purpose is to be closer to the pedestrian, but without losing the ability to travel a few kilometers in an acceptable time especially commuting.
Taking up little space and at low speeds is closer to the pedestrian than a car. This means that in certain areas with more "dangerous" roads (please read "drivers") we can make a mix. This not only brings peace and tranquility to our trip but we feel more comfortable with our children. It also allows to further shorten the distances.
Weight and logistics
Due to its compact size and fewer components a footbike at weighs 10kgs max, but Veli footbike weighs only 8kg and has a very sturdy steel frame and fork, so it is very easy to pick it up and climb stairs, or get in the lift, public transport, car ...
Footbikes requires full use of our body. Even in a daily commute context we do a lot more exercise and work a lot more muscles without realizing it. Our posture is also much straighter. Sweat can be the same as if we were walking, it depends on the speed. Over time you will master the footbike better and there are little tricks that make you ride faster with less effort.
One big difference is the lack of a transmission, one of the most complex features in a bicycle. On a footbike you just have to keep the tires at full pressure (on the road) and change brake pads when need. And there's almost no risk of you getting dirty.
For everyday use you can carry luggage in front (eg Klickfix) You can also easily carry a small child up to 3 years old in a bobike mini seat.
What is Veli footbike made of?
Kickbike steel frame with anti-corrosion powder coating
1" chrome steel fork
Front holes for bidon or air pump
Alex Rims silver reinforced aluminum wheels w/quick release for travel
Schwalbe Kojak standard front tire pressure 95psi; puncture proof (kevlar); high performance
Schwalbe Big Apple rear tire 12" - 55psi pressure; puncture proof (kevlar); suspension
Flat aluminum handlebar
Aluminum stem (22.2")
Cork style rubber grips
Vbrakes Tektro with tensor
Fenders (including removable front), kickstand and bell
Veli footbike is available in black and turquoise. Other colors are possible for additional charge depending on the RAL.
5 year warranty on frame and fork