Benefits 2019-07-09T12:50:55+00:00


Pedal it! Why is cycling better? It’s healthy, it’s fun , it reduces pollution and is a perfect solution to free the city from pollution and cars. Cycling is an activity we can do throughout the year and not only in summer. We can cycle to go to school, to work or to the gym.

John Ratey, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, in his book Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, tells of patients who after a year of “cycloterapa” were greatly improved by severe forms of depression. In short, scientists who have been studying the benefits of cycling on our brains for years, agree: cycling reduces stress and decreases depression. In a word, it gives happiness.

Riding a bicycle for 1 hour burns around 500 calories. According to research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, which studied the beneficial effects of cycling on overweight premenopausal women, one hour of cycling, several times a week, has slimming effects.

Cycling raises your heart rate and gets the blood pumping round your body. As a result, it’s among the types of exercise recommended by the NHS as healthy ways to reduce the risk of developing major illnesses such as heart disease and cancer.

Compare these three experiences:

  1. Get in the car, sit in traffic, queue to get into the car park, park, pay to park, arrive.
  2. Walk to bus stop, wait for bus, complain about bus being late, get on bus (pay), watch as it takes you round-the-houses, arriveabout half a mile from your destination
  3. Get on the bike, whizz through traffic, lock the bike, arrive

Unlike running, cycling is a low-impact sport: by pedaling, we do not exert pressure on the joints of the lower limbs. That’s why it’s indicated for the knees. Moreover, as reported by a French research published in the Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology, carried out on those who practice mountain biking, strengthens all the muscles of the legs. In conclusion: those who ride bikes improve muscle metabolism to the advantage above all of buttocks, thighs and calves. Not only. It also strengthens the muscles and bones of the dorsal area, so the back also benefits.

Many of the upshots we discuss when we talk about the benefits of cycling are exercise related. Reckon it might be easier to just go for a run? Running is weight bearing – and therefore injury rates are higher. Cycling, on the other hand, is non-weight bearing. When scientists compared groups of exercisers – long distance runners and cyclists, they found the runners suffered 133-144 per cent more muscle damage, 256 per cent moreinflammation and DOMS 87 per cent higher.

The more you ride intensely and the longer life expectancy, especially because you avoid heart disease. This is supported by a Danish study: for women, 2 to 3 years older, and for men, aged 4 to 5 years. Even the Tour de France cyclists live on average about 8 years longer than other sportsmen. It is the result of a research published in the International Journal of sport medicine.

Cycling can be dangerous, especially in the city, due to traffic accidents and pollution. In 2010, in the United States, almost 800 cyclists were killed and 515,000 ended up in the emergency room. What to do? First of all, wear a helmet with the correct size.

According to a recent study published by the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the WHO Regional Office for Europe, if the major European cities invested in two wheels and therefore in “green and healthy transport”, over 76,600 people could find work (in bicycle retail, in maintenance, in the supply of clothing and accessories for cyclists). Furthermore, around 10 thousand lives could be saved. If Rome adopted the same model of bike sharing in Copenhagen (Europe’s leading city with 26% of the city transport on two wheels), more than 3,200 new jobs could be created and 154 lives could be saved in a year.

Clever, charming, eco-friendly, generous, selfless. According to a study by the British Heart Foundation, a quarter of English people believe that bicycle riders are all this. Bicycle riders are the ideal partners, not soccer players!

“A Country is developed not when the poor have cars, but when the rich use public transport and bicycles “
Gustavo Petra