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Karen Beaudoin

Karen Beaudoin is a life-long Mainer, which means she’s a fan of the Red Sox (World Champs again! Take that Yankee fans), whoopee pies, Ogunquit Beach, the L.L. Bean boot mobile and vacations in tropical locations in February and March. Ninety-eight percent of her work week is spent as web editor for PressHerald.com; during the remaining “fun” percent she contributes to mainetoday.com.

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Posted: July 17, 2014

Bicycle Face: Don’t worry riders, your face won’t stay that way

Written by: Karen Beaudoin

Bicycle Face comes in many different forms.

During the Tour de France, Bicycle Face might look a little something like this:

Omega Pharma-Quick Step team rider Matteo Trentin of Italy reacts after crossing the finish line to win the 234.5 km seventh stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

Omega Pharma-Quick Step team rider Matteo Trentin of Italy reacts after crossing the finish line to win the 234.5 km seventh stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

AG2R-La Mondiale team rider Blel Kadri of France cycles to win the 161-km (100 miles) eighth stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

AG2R-La Mondiale team rider Blel Kadri of France cycles to win the 161-km (100 miles) eighth stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

AG2R-La Mondiale team rider Blel Kadri, left, of France and IAM Cycling team rider Sylvain Chavanel of France cycle during the 161-km (100 miles) eighth stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

AG2R-La Mondiale team rider Blel Kadri, left, of France and IAM Cycling team rider Sylvain Chavanel of France cycle during the 161-km (100 miles) eighth stage of the Tour de France. REUTERS

Or, in happier moments, Bicycle Face mike look like this:

Germany's Tony Martin crosses the finish line to win the ninth stage of the Tour de France. The Associated Press

Germany’s Tony Martin crosses the finish line to win the ninth stage of the Tour de France. The Associated Press

Back in the late 19th century, it was believed there was no such thing as a Happy Bicycle Face. In fact, it was once though to be a legitimate health scare and the Literary Digest of 1895 described the “condition” this way: “The unconscious effort to maintain one’s balance tends to produce a wearied and exhausted ‘bicycle face.'”

Even worse, the condition was characterized by “a hard, clenched jaw and bulging eyes.”

For those reasons – and more – women of the late 19th century were warned to steer clear of the two-wheelers.

But the truth of the matter was that bikes were part of the feminist movement, allowing women to push for changes ranges from increased ability to get out and about more easily to a reduction in undergarment restrictions and everything in between.

Three sisters on their bicycles in a field at Roton Point, Connecticut, circa 1908. Photo by The Montifraulo Collection/Getty Images

Three sisters on their bicycles in a field at Roton Point, Connecticut, circa 1908. Photo by The Montifraulo Collection/Getty Images

Read the full Vox article here, and ride on ladies. Ride on.

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