Emily Gresh–Swanoretti with family.

I started this blog as a place to write about about moments of cycling that I have loved and also about bicycles themselves.   At its most literal, Swanoretti On A Bicycle is a reference to me on a bicycle, a ballerina and the light fleetness that is a road bike working together, like one machine although there are two–the body and the bike.

As I was getting into this blog, writing short posts here and there, I won a bicycle design contest sponsored by Giant Bicycles and the Young Survival Coalition.  So I started to write about my experience of having breast cancer at 39, and how I took up cycling, and what it was like to win the design contest.  There are a number of posts about those experiences here and I hope that many people are helped by reading my story and finding some kinship as they make their own ways through the devastation that is illness, especially when it comes earlier than might be expected in one’s life.

Around those experiences, I remain as true as I can to writing  about whatever inspires me at the moment– athletes, artists, men, women, people everywhere, working, thinking, and moving through life, dancing, cycling, living, breathing, all of the above.  That’s my story and this my blog.  Enjoy.  Emily Gresh

3 thoughts on “About

  1. I consider dance to be the highest form of art (classical stuff rather than the rolling-on-the-floor modern stuff). Cycling is a sport rather than an art. But one can put art in any sport, I believe.

    If you have not tried riding fixed gear, then you may want to give it a go one of these days. You might get hooked. Nothing to do with art, but you may enjoy the more direct relationship between you and your bike. I do albeit I was very skeptical at first, given that fixies are rather fashionable these days…

  2. I think you are right…those fixed gear bikes look like fun, all trendiness aside. And if the connection between body and bicycle is more direct, all the better for me, former dancer that I am. I will likely be hooked.

    Cycling is one of the most intense sports to me. True is isn’t art, but the demands placed on a cyclist’s body remind me over and over again of those placed on classical ballet dancers. That said, while being a classical ballet dancer was really intense and difficult, cycling at the highest professional levels seems nearly inhuman in intensity. To give oneself over to anything like that takes a certain devotion–that unstoppable thing within us that drives us there. It is that unstoppable thing that makes an intersection between art and sport for me. As a dancer, it was most satisfying to push both sides–the expressive artistic side and the physical extremes of the body. In everyday life, it’s possible to do the same without much notice or fanfare, but people are pushing themselves all the time in incredible ways, great moments we miss sometimes and catch unexpectedly at other times. Emily

  3. When I built up my single speed bike, I had the rear wheel built with a free/fixed flip-flop hub. After a few months, I looked at the empty fixed side of the hub and decided to install a sprocket / cog and lock ring primarily to protect the threads from being damaged. It took another couple of months to be taken over by curiosity to actually flip the wheel to the fixed side. It felt very odd at first, but I ended up preferring the fixed side. Not sure if I would be saying the same thing if I lived in a hilly area like Wallonia, however…

    As for the rest of what you said, I agree.

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