Since cycling is a global phenomenon that’s been around for quite a while now, it’s safe to say that it has many advantages that make it stand out among other fitness activities and means of transportation. We all know that riding a bike to work or school helps you avoid traffic jams, that it’s cheaper and sometimes faster than taking a bus, for example. However, we often tend to forget the health benefits that cycling provides.
Every cyclist will tell you that staying in shape and losing weight are the most obvious advantages of bike riding, but there are many more that deserve at least the same amount of credit. Let’s take a look at some of the greatest benefits to our health that are directly related to cycling.
If you cycle regularly, your heart muscles will be stronger, while your resting pulse and blood fat levels are likely to be lower. All this makes your body healthier, since cardiac health is crucial when it comes to your overall health and fitness. As you know, the stronger the heart, the more energy you’ll have.
Studies have also shown that cycling is great when it comes to reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases, such as stroke, heart attack and high blood pressure. By stimulating and improving your heart, bike riding makes you more immune to such problems.
Lower body toning
Since your legs and butt do most of the work when pedalling, it’s logical that your lower body will get some great workout when you’re on your bike. Those who don’t like weight training find cycling to be the perfect alternative. It helps not only slimming down some parts of their lower body, but also improves the appearance.
Imagine the workout you’d get if you had to constantly climb a steep hill or make your way down the road. You can get all that by simply riding your bike at different speeds, since your lower body will be constantly engaged. For maximum effect, make sure you are comfortable while cycling and choose high-quality gear and clothes, such as Pearl Izumi, which will help you make the most of your cycling routine.
One of the most obvious and popular reasons why people take up cycling is to lose weight. Although the maths is simple (you need to burn more calories than you take in), there are more and less efficient ways of burning excess weight. Cycling definitely belongs to the first group, since it engages your whole body, which leads to burning fat all over than body.
Being an aerobic exercise, cycling can be done at various speeds, which you can adjust to your shape and level of fitness and gradually work your way up to more challenging routes. Investing in a bicycle is definitely cheaper than joining a gym and you still get to enjoy the most important benefits.
Coordination and posture
With more and more people experiencing problems with posture due to the fact that they spend a lot of time sitting in the office or while commuting, cycling seems to be one of the best remedies. While riding a bike, your back is straight, provided your bike is the right size. Also, your body is engaged in the motions of grasping the handlebars and pedalling.
In terms of coordination, you improve it by having to pedal, steer and maintain awareness of your surroundings. Of course, the level of coordination is directly related to the amount of time you spend cycling.
Recovery from injury
Cycling is often recommended to those who, for some reason, aren’t allowed to do run or lift weights. So, if you’ve injured your ankle, you can still ride a bike, even a stationary one, before you’re ready to hit the treadmill again. The fact that you’ll still get some exercise while recovering from an injury means you’ll improve your fitness and recover from the injury much faster and more easily.
As you can see, these health benefits alone should be enough to stimulate you to take up cycling or keep this healthy habit. There aren’t many so accessible ways of improving your health, which are also convenient and help you save some money on joining an expensive gym or purchasing your own exercising equipment, which you might keep in the basement and forget about it.