Inspired – Chris Walmsley

Bikes have been mentioned in this column before, but for me, the bike I’m currently riding is special, and my inspiration.

I’ve heard it said that cycling is the most efficient form of human-powered transport. That’s some pretty high design kudos right there, yet for the past 100 years, bike design has not moved on much.

Until now.

One of the things I love about being a designer is approaching a problem from a fresh angle, and creating something both inspirational and functional. For me, this particular design – the Strida – captures that harmony. It’s a thing of beauty, effortlessly blending the elegance of aesthetic design with practical mechanical engineering.

But it is close examination that truly shows the design intelligence and insight. It needs no external grease or oily parts. It uses a Kevlar drive-belt instead of a chain, making it both incredibly easy to use and low maintenance. It’s a credit to the designer that it’s also fun to ride and raises a smile.
There is an area of design called ‘the super normal’, where ‘a functional object is elevated by its elegant simplicity’. Need I say more?

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