Most bicycles have multiple gears to make it easier for you to ride up hills and let you go faster on level ground, according to the website BicycleUniverse. Classifying a bike as having a certain number of "speeds" means it has that many possible gear combinations. A 10-speed bike is an example of multiple-geared bike. While 10-speeds once were common, they have been replaced by 18-speeds or even 27-speed bikes. But they still are a good bike to use to practice shifting gears.
Mount your bicycle, and place your feet on the pedals. Begin pedaling forward.
Adjust your hands to a position you find most comfortable. A 10-speed usually has drop handlebars, so you can put your hands either on the top in a more casual position, or underneath on the curved part, for a bent-over, racing position. The lower hand position is practical if you feel you might need to brake quickly.
Change the gears to accommodate your needs. A 10-speed has 10 possible gear combinations. There is one lever on the left with numbers 1 to 3, and one on the right with numbers 1 to 7. The left lever controls the front gears, and the right controls the back. Lower numbers signify lower gears, and higher numbers signify higher gears. Shifting down to a lower gear lessens the pedaling tension, making it easier to pedal, and shifting to a higher gear increases tension, making pedaling more difficult.
Press the lever for your back brakes if you are traveling at a higher rate of speed. The back brake lever usually is located on the right handlebar. A 10-speed has both front and back brakes, and seasoned riders use mainly the front. However, if you press the front brakes aggressively when you are going fast, it could cause an accident. You can use both brakes simultaneously if it makes you more comfortable.