Smiling male on a road bike, cycling up a bendy road

Sydney Lockdown: How Cyclists Are Getting Through It

Staff writer
August 4, 2021

Lockdown can’t crush Sydney’s cycling spirit

While some countries are shedding pandemic restrictions in favour of sporting events and music festivals, almost half of Australia’s 25.3 million population entered into another lockdown on 21 July. By 28 July, most cities had flattened the curve enough to reopen. Unfortunately, greater Sydney has not only remained in lockdown but has also begun sending reinforcements into hotspots to enforce the new lockdown rules.

Along with this, there is also speculation that this lockdown could last well into September.

With only a small percentage of Australians vaccinated, it’s not surprising that the merry-go-round of opening and closing seems to be continuing with no clear end in sight. But not all hope is lost.

Although lockdown brings with it a sense of helplessness, Australians are finding new ways to retain a sense of community even while the world feels upside down.

Getting to grips with the new regulations

There are limited reasonable excuses for leaving your home during Sydney’s lockdown period, according to the current regulations. These reasons include shopping for food or essentials, giving or receiving medical care, essential work or education, and exercising.

You can only exercise within a 10km radius of your home, and only in groups of two. However, you may exercise in larger groups if all participants are from the same household. These regulations change frequently, so ensure you’re up to date on the latest restrictions in your area.

If you live in one of the LGAs flagged as hotspots, lockdown restrictions are tighter. You’ll need to wear a mask outdoors, and you can only exercise within a 5km radius of your home.

As of 16 August, the LGAs identified as hotspots are:

  • Fairfield
  • Canterbury-Bankstown
  • Liverpool
  • Cumberland
  • Blacktown
  • Parramatta
  • Georges River
  • Campbelltown
  • Bayside
  • Strathfield
  • Burwood

How tech can help you make the most of your lockdown radius

A 5km – 10km radius might not sound like much, especially if you’re used to long-distance cycling, but if you look at a map of Sydney from a bird’s eye view, it puts into perspective just how much you can do with the radius you’re able to explore.

Want to see how far you can go? The site is a resource that allows you to input your area to check your radius. If you combine your radius with burbing, the possibilities for close-to-home adventuring are almost endless!

Burbing, despite the unfortunate name, is an invaluable trend that picked up at the start of the pandemic. By using their maximum radius, Australians could make the most of their rides by exploring every street in their suburb. We know coffee is an essential part of life, especially for cyclists, but if you go out burbing stay safe and learn a new skill by making a mocha at home rather than going to a cafe.

While the Burbing Map has the highest usage in Melbourne, you also can see the routes other cyclists have discovered in Sydney. If you need some motivation, there’s even a Burbing Hall of Fame. Some users have managed to cycle 90% of their neighbourhoods!

Although you can’t compete in races or events during lockdown, you can always scratch the competitive itch by setting yourself the challenge of representing Sydney in the Burbing Hall of Fame.

Maintaining your fitness (and your sanity) during Sydney’s lockdown

While the new lockdown restrictions can zap your motivation to get on your bike, there are other ways you can keep your mind and body engaged as we trudge through the next few weeks:

  • Tinker with your bike: Learning some basic maintenance, cleaning, and small repairs can save you a lot of money in the long run. Before you get your toolbox out, make sure you get this right as our policy doesn’t cover mechanical failures or overtightening of clamps.
  • Get social: Become active in cycling groups in your area on social media. Making future plans for once it’s safe to do gives you something to look forward to, and seeing other people’s success stories may inspire you to get out there when your motivation is running low.
  • Do a downward dog: There are loads of yoga videos on YouTube aimed specifically at cyclists to target overworked muscles, hip and back discomfort from leaning over handlebars and learning to connect to your breath. If you have any niggling pains or discomfort, it’s the perfect time to get to work on alleviating them.
  • Take it easy: Don’t be hard on yourself if you’ve gained weight, lost fitness, or missed deadlines for personal goals. It can feel simply impossible to function at your peak in a climate of fear and uncertainty. That’s okay. The best thing you can do for your body is to just listen to it and give yourself a break when you need it.

Need a helping hand?

  • Velosure: We’ve got you covered if you have any questions about your cover during the lockdown period. Give us a call on 1300 83 5678 from 08:30 to 18:30, Monday to Friday, or email us at
  • National Coronavirus Line: Call the National Coronavirus Line on 1800 020 080 for advice on medical help or getting tested.
  • Lifeline: For mental health or personal crisis support, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.
  • Vaccines: For information on the vaccine rollout in NSW, click here.
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