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Cycling – The Many Health Benefits of Cycling

If you ask experts in fitness and healthy lifestyles, they will tell you that riding and cycling are perhaps one of the best exercises available. Even the cheapest bicycle can help people keep fit, healthy and in shape, disproving the myth that you need the most expensive lightweight bike to get any benefit from using it. The humble bike is almost the perfect exercise machine, as it combines minimal physical stresses with maximum exercise efficiency.

Although US citizens are coming around to having a more healthy lifestyle, the number of people using a bicycle for this reason is very small. This is also despite popular figures such as Lance Armstrong being in the media all of the time and winning big races such as the Tour De France more than once. The bike came to the US in the early 1800’s but was soon overtaken by the popularity of the motorcycle and eventually became only the plaything of children or students.

The fact is, that cycling does offer many health benefits. Apart from getting you from A to B, the bike can also give your body a good aerobic exercise workout. Your legs, thighs, buttocks and hips will benefit from more defined muscles and any fat in that area will reduce and be replaced by muscle. There are even some studies that show cycling to be the best exercise available to reduce the amount of cellulite from the legs. Take that ThighBuster! Although running and workout classes such as aerobics are generally more popular, cycling is lower impact to areas such as knees and hips, making it better for older people or those who suffer from injuries.

If you do suffer from any joint or muscles pain, cycling may not be the best for you though. Try swimming instead, as the support given by the water will reduce the impact and stress on your body. If you are after that six-pack, cycling can also help reduce fat in the stomach areas too. cycling is a great all round training and fitness activity, but it does not come without its problems. Some people report increased levels of back pain from cycling and there have been cases of male impotency, following years of cycling training. The impotency has only been confined to those professional cyclists that ride for more than 6 hours per day – so probably not you or I.

Although the bicycle is used more as a recreational device rather than as a primary way to transport yourself around, there is evidence that people all over the world are seeing health benefits from using them. They help burn fat, reduce blood pressure, increase your own body’s protection against infections and diseases and help you stay healthy. The reason why this is the case, is that the increased levels of blood flow around the body help deliver these benefits to you. Also, the increased heart rate you get whilst cycling helps you obtain a good cardiovascular workout, similar to an aerobic class. Another overlooked benefit from cycling is it’s ability to reduce stress and tension. Cycling home from work is the perfect way to reduce stress and a slow ride through the countryside is the perfect way to unwind.

Riding a carbon fiber bike is the best way to get into road racing or time trial events if you decide that your current bike is not great for long distance or speed. Although they are expensive, the reduced weight of the bike is perfect for cyclists to compete with others or achieve higher levels of fitness.
Read more about these kind of bikes here: http://www.carbon-fiber-bike.com

Category: Cycling Health

About Mark Carrington

Keen cyclist and cycle tourist. Ridden by bicycle across Australia 7 times and crewed Race Across America. Experienced randonneur participated in Paris Brest Paris in 2007

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