They say that once you learn how to ride a bicycle, you will never forget. Remember when you got your first bike and how excited you were when you could finally ride it without the training wheels? Bike riding promotes good coordination and is a healthy exercise enjoyed by children and adults alike.
Throughout Europe, Asia, and larger cities in America, bike transportation is normal. Since it uses muscle power instead of fossil fuels, you can eliminate your carbon footprint and save the environment from damaging air and noise pollution. Biking is also a popular sport for short-distance and cross-country racing.
It’s also an ideal exercise used to increase endurance, benefit your leg muscles, and create tight glutes. Additionally, you enjoy riding in the fresh air and getting a mood boost from the wonders of nature. If you consider taking up bike riding as a hobby, here are 15 benefits that you may reap.
15 Reasons to Try Biking for Better Health
1. Maintain Cardiovascular Health
When you are biking at a steady pace, you’ll notice that your heart rate will increase. This increased rate is good aerobic exercise for your heart and vascular system. When you make it a habit of riding your bike 3-5 times a day, it may help you prevent certain cardiovascular problems like a heart attack or stroke.
2. Improve Strength & Flexibility
As you age, your whole body tends to get a little weaker and less flexible. To combat this dilemma, many fitness experts recommend biking. The constant movement of your arms, legs, and lower body can strengthen your muscles and make you more flexible, even when you get older.
3. Improve Joint Health and Mobility
Another condition that creeps up on you with age is arthritis. This disorder is caused by inflammation in your joints that make them stiff, swollen, and painful. Sometimes, arthritis can get so bad that it can make activities difficult or even possible.
If you’ve been diagnosed with arthritis or want to prevent it, talk to your professional healthcare provider, or rheumatologist about how biking can benefit you. It keeps your joints moving and maybe the low-impact exercise you need to lessen the joints’ stiffness.
4.Improve Coordination and Posture
Remember when you were a kid, and your parents scolded you to stand or sit up straight. Good posture makes you appear healthier and more self-confident, but it keeps your joints and muscles in better shape. Additionally, it prevents soreness and injury from slumping and other poor posture habits.
Biking requires excellent upper and lower body posture and may help you maintain it even when you’re not on the bike. As you learn to work your feet, legs, and upper body together when cycling down the path, it can improve your coordination for daily activities and other exercises.
5. Strengthen Bones
Have you ever considered what your body would be like without your skeleton? You would be a blobby ball of flesh with no protection for your internal organs. Age, proper nutrition, exercise, and disease prevention are key factors in determining your bone’s health.
Your bones require calcium and Vitamin C to stay strong, but they also need aerobic exercise like biking. When you keep your bones healthy, you may reduce the risks of osteoporosis or brittle bone disease.
6. Reduce Fatty Deposits
Are you tired of those embarrassing love handles or the unsightly fatty deposits that wiggle under your arms? Losing weight can certainly help diminish fatty deposits, but you also need exercise to tighten the skin and make them less noticeable.
Riding a bicycle to work or for fun can keep your limbs moving and reduce the fatty buildups on your hips, thighs, and gut. Cycling can build tight, lean leg muscles and the tight glutes that you want. If you are into hand cycling, it can build muscles in your arms and may make your hands more dexterous.
7. Promote Disease Management or Prevention
While no exercise has proven to prevent or cure any disease or disorder, countless studies indicate that physical fitness can strengthen your whole body, so you’re less prone to it.
Riding a bike provides an ideal workout and may encourage a stronger immunity system. If you already have a disease, talk to your healthcare provider about how adding bicycling activity may help manage your condition.
8. Reduce Symptoms of Depression and Anxiety
For centuries, people with mental illness have fought society’s unfair stigma that still exists. Are you one of the estimated 40 million people in America diagnosed with depression or anxiety? These common conditions are also some of the easiest to treat with a combination of medicine and therapy.
Psychological research has discovered that moderate exercise (like riding a bicycle) may trigger hormones in your brain responsible for calmness and well-being. If you are riding down a forest path or in a wooded park area, the sights and sounds of nature can boost your moods and soothe the symptoms of depression and anxiety.
9. Promote Weight Loss
Undoubtedly, you’ve read the alarming studies about the steady rise of the obesity epidemic in the United States. It’s disturbing to discover that nearly 43 percent of Americans are classified as either overweight or obese. Perhaps you are among these numbers and want to do something about it.
Do you want an exercise regimen that is fun and can help you lose weight? Why not try riding a bicycle a few times a week. It burns calories and the extra fatty deposits you don’t want. Bike riding is an exciting exercise that your whole family can enjoy.
10. Help Manage Diabetes
Among the top health threats in our country, diabetes is ranked number seven as a cause of death. While Type I diabetes usually presents during childhood and is permanent, Type 2 diabetes can often be managed well or even reversed with proper diet and exercise.
If you have diabetes, part of your treatment plan probably includes some form of exercise to build stamina and maintain body weight. Consult with your diabetes specialist to see if riding a bike may be a good exercise for you.
11. Prevent Certain Cancers
Cancer is a menace to our society and claims lives in America every year. Fortunately, continuous research, new drugs, and novel treatments have made it easier to prevent or cure than it was just a few years ago.
While there are no definite links between cycling and cancer prevention, there are positive correlations in its ability to lower the stress linked to many forms of cancer. Since biking can improve your stamina and your overall physical health, it’s worth adding to your regular exercise program.
12. Improve Cognitive and Memory Function
Even if you are riding your bicycle through a city park or on backwoods trails, you need to know where you’re going. With experience, biking can help improve your navigational skills in your town and the local parks where you ride. Since navigational skills require good cognition and memory, it stands to reason that bike riding may improve these vital functions.
13. Promote Pulmonary Health
Like all organs in your body, your lungs require nutrients and proper exercise for optimal health. Aerobic exercise like bike riding increases your rate of breathing and may increase your air capacity. It flushes your whole body with fresh oxygen and promotes healing and wellness.
If you have asthma or other pulmonary health issues, discuss with your healthcare provider how bike riding can be a useful tool for you. Even if you take short, 15- minute rides, you may see some benefits. Consider riding in places that aren’t congested with smog and other air pollution harmful for your breathing.
14. Promote Restful Sleep
When you don’t get enough sleep, your whole body, mind, and spirit are affected. In recent reports, approximately 25 percent of Americans are sleep deprived, and you may be one of them. Are you looking for ways to get better sleep at night?
Would you believe that bicycling may play a hand in helping you get a good night’s rest? While preliminary studies show that this fun exercise doesn’t directly benefit sleep, it can benefit other factors that do. Cycling can reduce your stress and anxiety levels, which can ease your mind so you can go off to dreamland comfortably and awake refreshed.
15. May Enlarge Your Social Circle
Are you a social butterfly? The good news is that bicycle riding can be a solitary activity, or you can make it a group effort. Consider recruiting your family to ride together to create exciting and lasting memories. Most cities and some suburban areas have clubs you may be interested in joining for cycling enthusiasts.
Final Thoughts on Giving Biking a Try
Strap on your helmet and protective gear and discover the vibrant world of cycling. You may not become a champion speed cyclist, but you can still enjoy its health benefits. If you want to have some fun, why not consider learning how to ride a bicycle for two?