Jerell and his ebike

JERELL "From Rehab to Survival Tool"

The last thing I thought I'd do was get an e-bike. Electric bikes didn't even exist in my bicycle universe. But after getting sidelined with injury, that changed.

Suddenly it became vitally important to seek out and accept this intriguing variation on a lifelong theme. Over a very short time, what began as a tool of necessity became indispensable, like that multitool you keep in its special place so it's always there when you need it. As many do, I returned to cycling after a decades-long hiatus. The effect of a bodysurfing impact from years ago made itself known as I began road cycling again. I couldn't sustain pedaling over time without aggravating my left hamstring and heel and tightening up my left side from toe to hip. My bodysurfing bodyjam had left me permanently out-of-sync. But bicycles are notoriously symmetrical things. For three years I tried everything minus surgery to overcome my asymmetrical wonkiness. Exit road cycling. But bicycling Can a person set aside the fullest expression of their untethered self and remain happy?

Enter the electric bike.

After doing lots of online research I realized e-bikes were now so much more than throttle-only, super heavy town cruisers. Thanks to the friendly and knowledgeable staff at RocketElectrics, I was able to test ride any bike in the store and decide from the saddle the best bike for me (They're all e-bikes!).

I discovered how incredibly cool e-power on a bicycle can be for cyclists - that is, if you enjoy feeling like a kid and superhuman at the same time. That's why I chose BH's fast and fun E-Motion Neo Cross.

One of the world's oldest and most respected bicycle companies, BH was intent on producing a line of electric bicycles for bicyclists and they succeeded.

The Neo Cross is a great front-suspended hybrid bicycle with a responsive, wide-ranging drivetrain, stellar hydraulic disc brakes and bombproof wheels with heavy duty rims and spokes designed to support the extra e-weight.

On that foundation BH overlaid the electronics, with a high-performing hub motor/controller/torque convertor package, a beautifully designed battery integrated into the downtube and an excellent LCD rider interface.

I appreciate the Cross' design every time I climb aboard. Everything just works. The Cross goes wherever my explorations of Austin's urban green spaces take me and after 42 hours and 350 miles of mostly off-asphalt riding, it performs flawlessly.

For those searching specifically for the ultimate rehab tool to return to cycling, BH's E-Motion e-bikes provide a range of excellent choices, from full-suspension mountainbikes to all-city commuters.

As do all E-Motion bikes in the Neo line, the Cross has a dual power system - throttle-only or pedelec. This allows you to fully control pedal force and frequency, important for riders dealing with injuries who need to build back strength the right way - slowly and progressively.

If you're injury doesn't allow you to pedal, no worries. You can get around on any of the BH E-motion bikes with throttle power alone until you're ready to use pedelec power to ease you back into full-force pedaling.

Most importantly, if you don't want to be stuck on a trainer when rehabbing or returning to cycling and want to ride outside and in your element, go test ride an e-bike at RocketElectrics!

For a cyclist to enter the world of e-biking, a game-changing injury is not required. All you have to do is take a bold step outside the box. I did and it gave me back two of my most favorite things in the world - bicycles and bicycling.

My BH E-Motion Neo Cross quickly morphed from rehab to survival tool - I survive as a bicyclist because of it.

For that I will always be grateful - to BH for its commitment to excellence and to RocketElectrics for showing me the e-way with friendliness, smarts and a passion to go where no Austin bike shop has gone before.

Stop by and join the revolution!