Google autocomplete function gives you popular searches for a given word or phrase - and some of the cycling results are quite surprising

Google can be your best friend when it comes to answering those tricky questions that, frankly, a real friend would probably laugh at – and then go and tell everyone else.

In the privacy of your own home (or work computer, at least) you can solve all manner awkward queries without ridicule or judgement. It’s no different for those curious about cycling. There is a lot of mystery surrounding cycling, its equipment, rituals and, you know, exactly how far up you should shave your legs.

Here are the results of trying out a few popular terms to see what Google thinks you’re attempting to ask. Google bases its autocomplete on how many previous people typed in that query, so if it’s in there, then people have already asked it…

>>> Embarrassing cycling problems, and how to prevent them

What cycling…

Starting with a basic query, ‘what cycling’, Google brings up some sensible autocomplete answers, like what cycling gear do I need and what cycling does to your body… but the top search is what cycling events do Skoda sponsor. Either Skoda’s sponsorship of cycling events is a massive brand awareness success or its marketing department have been doing a lot of Google searches.


Why do cyclists…

Like the meaning of life, people are still searching for the answer to the unanswerable question: why do cyclists shave their legs? Why do they wear Lycra? And of course, all cyclists wear long socks and only ever ride anti-clockwise. Always.


Why cyclist…

Similarly, starting a Google query ‘why cyclist’ also brings up the eternal leg shaving question and the one about tight-fitting clothes. But also, why do cyclists ride two abreast? Could it be that they like talking to each other? Do people in cars sit two abreast?


>>> 15 questions you should never ask a cyclist

What do cyclists…

The inevitable query on cycling and its association with doping makes an appearance, perhaps people are curious about how the cheats are cheating, or perhaps they want to procure some for themselves. If that wasn’t worrying enough, it’s of great concern that people are asking what side of the road cyclists ride on.


Where cyclists…

The positioning of cyclists on the road is a fair enough question, but there’s a worrying preoccupation with where cyclists have a wee. It’s as if all cyclists have bladders the size of a thimble and must constantly seek a suitable venue in which to relieve themselves.


How cyclists…

This search perhaps shows that there are more non-cyclists than cyclists making some of these searches. After the inevitable weight loss and peeing query, there are two on how cyclists are responsible for accidents. Clicking on the link brings up the usual selection of ‘no claim no fee’ ads, and then a selection of articles on how cyclists generally aren’t responsible for road accidents.


Why bikes…

The query Google comes up with first on this one is great. The others, not so great.