Cycling Merit Badge Pamphlet Cycling Merit Badge

Cycling


Requirements were REVISED effective July 15, 2013.

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To see the requirements, without the changes highlighted, Click here.

For the previous requirements, Click here.


Either this Merit Badge
or Swimming MB or Hiking MB
is Required to earn the Eagle Scout Rank


The changes shown here, which added an option for mountain biking, were released at the 2013 National Jamboree

Note: The bicycle used for fulfilling these requirements must have all required safety features and must be registered as required by your local traffic laws.

  1. Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that could occur while cycling, including hypothermia, heat reactions, frostbite, dehydration, insect stings, tick bites, snakebites, blisters, and hyperventilation.
    Do the following:
    1. Explain to your counselor the most likely hazards you may encounter while participating in cycling activities and what you should do to anticipate, help prevent, mitigate, and respond to these hazards.
    2. Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that could occur while cycling, including cuts, scratches, blisters, sunburn, heat exhaustion, heatstroke, hypothermia, dehydration, insect stings, tick bites, and snakebite. Explain to your counselor why you should be able to identify the poisonous plants and poisonous animals that are found in your area.
    3. Explain the importance of wearing a properly sized and fitted helmet while cycling, and of wearing the right clothing for the weather. Know the BSA Bike Safety Guidelines.
  2. Clean and adjust a bicycle. Prepare it for inspection using a bicycle safety checklist. Be sure the bicycle meets local laws.
  3. Show your bicycle to your counselor for inspection. Point out the adjustments or repairs you have made. Do the following:
    1. Show all points that need oiling regularly.
    2. Show points that should be checked regularly to make sure the bicycle is safe to ride.
    3. Show how to adjust brakes, seat level and height, and steering tube.
  4. Describe how to brake safely with foot brakes and with hand brakes.
  5. Show how to repair a flat by removing the tire, replacing or patching the tube, and remounting the tire. Use an old bicycle tire.
  6. Describe your state’s traffic laws for bicycles. Compare them with motor-vehicle laws.
    Take a road test with your counselor and demonstrate the following:
    1. Properly mount, pedal, and brake including emergency stops.
    2. On an urban street with light traffic, properly execute a left turn from the center of the street; also demonstrate an alternate left turn technique used during periods of heavy traffic.
    3. Properly execute a right turn.
    4. Demonstrate appropriate actions at a right-turn-only lane when you are continuing straight.
    5. Show proper curbside and road-edge riding. Show how to safely ride along a row of parked cars.
    6. Cross railroad tracks properly.
    7. Describe your state’s traffic laws for bicycles. Compare them with motor-vehicle laws. Know the bicycle-safety guidelines.
    8. Avoiding main highways, take two rides of 10 miles each, two rides of 15 miles each, and two rides of 25 miles each. You must make a report of the rides taken. List dates, routes traveled, and interesting things seen.*
    9. After fulfilling requirement 8, lay out on a road map a 50-mile trip. Stay away from main highways. Using your map, make this ride in eight hours.
  7. Using the BSA buddy system, complete all of the requirements for ONE of the following options: road biking OR mountain biking.
    1. Road Biking
      1. Take a road test with your counselor and demonstrate the following:
        1. Properly mount, pedal, and brake, including emergency stops.
        2. On an urban street with light traffic, properly execute a left turn from the center of the street; also demonstrate an alternate left-turn technique used during periods of heavy traffic.
        3. Properly execute a right turn.
        4. Demonstrate appropriate actions at a right-turn-only lane when you are continuing straight.
        5. Show proper curbside and road-edge riding. Show how to ride safely along a row of parked cars.
        6. Cross railroad tracks properly.
      2. Avoiding main highways, take two rides of 10 miles each, two rides of 15 miles each, and two rides of 25 miles each. You must make a report of the rides taken. List dates for the routes traveled, and interesting things seen.
      3. After completing requirement b for the road biking option, do ONE of the following:
        (Note: We believe that the previous line should read "After completing requirement 2 ...")
        1. Lay out on a road map a 50-mile trip. Stay away from main highways. Using your map, make this ride in eight hours.
        2. Participate in an organized bike tour of at least 50 miles. Make this ride in eight hours. Afterward, use the tour’s cue sheet to make a map of the ride.
    2. Mountain Biking
      1. Take a trail ride with your counselor and demonstrate the following:
        1. Properly mount, pedal, and brake, including emergency stops.
        2. Show shifting skills as applicable to climbs and obstacles.
        3. Show proper trail etiquette to hikers and other cyclists, including when to yield the right-of-way.
        4. Show proper technique for riding up and down hills.
        5. Demonstrate how to correctly cross an obstacle by either going over the obstacle on your bike or dismounting your bike and crossing over or around the obstacle.
        6. Cross rocks, gravel, and roots properly.
      2. Describe the rules of trail riding, including how to know when a trail is unsuitable for riding.
      3. On trails approved by your counselor, take two rides of 2 miles each, two rides of 5 miles each, and two rides of 8 miles each. You must make a report of the rides taken. List dates for the routes traveled, and interesting things seen.
      4. After fulfilling the previous requirement, lay out on a trail map a 22-mile trip. You may include multiple trail systems, if needed. Stay away from main highways. Using your map, make this ride in six hours.

* The bicycle must have all required safety features. It must be registered as required by your local traffic laws.


Scouts should follow the Bike Safety guidelines in the Guide to Safe Scouting, when working on the Cycling Merit Badge.  Those guidelines include the following statement:

All cyclists must wear a properly sized and fitted helmet approved by either the Snell Memorial Foundation or the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards.

The ANSI standards mentioned in the Guide to Safe Scouting have apparently been superseded by newer standards. For more information on Bicycle Helmets, we encourage you to look through the information on the web site maintained by the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute.

There is an apparent a typo in requirement 7a3, as noted above.

BSA Advancement ID#: 039
Requirements last updated in: 2013
Pamphlet Publication Number: 35881
Pamphlet Stock (SKU) Number: 000000
Pamphlet Revision Date: 2013

Worksheets for use in working on these requirements: Format
Word Format PDF Format

Blanks in this worksheets table appear when we do not have a worksheet for the badge that includes these requirements.


Page updated on: April 02, 2014



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