Cycling, two wheels, a frame, a handlebar, a saddle, a chain, and a great desire to pedal: this is the recipe for happiness and well-being. The bicycle is made up of a few simple mechanical parts which, joined together, form a harmonious whole with extraordinary potential.
Knowing what the positive effects of physical activity are on our body and mind can entice us to exercise. Here we will focus on the benefits of our two-wheeled best friend. Here, then, are 10 good reasons to cycle not only in summer but all year round, not only for racing but also for daily trips around the city.
1. It makes us discover the world
The bike can be an excellent companion in our adventure to discover the world. Widely used in the city for quick travel in the middle of traffic and to cross historic centers closed to cars, the bicycle is also an ideal means to take on vacation and traveling. Furthermore, the opening of new cycle paths and cycle paths is encouraging more and more people to pedal. There is even talk of “cycle tourism”: a way to live in direct contact with nature, in complete relaxation and respecting the environment. A real cure-all for the body and sight.
2. Gives harmonic muscles
Pedaling allows the harmonious development of all lower muscle groups (legs, buttocks), the abdominal and lumbar area. There are many other muscles that (perhaps without realizing it) we use when we are in the saddle: shoulders, neck, and arms are used to keep the head up, and they tend especially when pedaling out of the saddle. The back, the aforementioned abdomen, and pectorals, on the other hand, are contracted when sprinting or tackling a climb.
3. A panacea for the heart
If practiced regularly, cycling is a real panacea for the cardiovascular system. In fact, in addition to being good for the development of the heart, it allows the reduction of diastolic blood pressure and the reduction of cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.
4. It makes us breathe better and reduces fatigue
Regularly practiced cycling activity increases the efficiency of the pulmonary alveoli. Furthermore, according to a study, the energy levels of those who cycle at a moderate pace at least 3 times a week, improve by 20%, while fatigue decreases by 65%.
5. A boost to the metabolism and help against the extra pounds
Like any sport, riding a bicycle regularly helps to make the metabolism work well, allowing us the right amount of energy and maintaining physical fitness. It is estimated that one hour of cycling can burn up to 500 calories. According to research published by the Archives of Internal Medicine and conducted on a sample of premenopausal women suffering from overweight, an hour of cycling, several times a week, allows the reduction of body weight.
6. Protects the knees
Pedaling is one of the most effective and safest activities for the ligaments in our knees. Unlike running, cycling is a low-impact sport: while in the saddle we do not exert pressure on the joints of the lower limbs.
7. It is the type of training suitable for everyone
Cycling does not require particular athletic training unless you choose the path of competitive cycling. Simple pedaling, therefore, is suitable for all ages.
8. Extend the life
Precisely by virtue of its cardiac benefits, cycling would increase life expectancy. For women, it goes from 2 to 3 years of life more, for men from 4 to 5 years. 8 years longer than their sports colleagues dedicated to other disciplines. This was the interesting result of research published in the International Journal of Sports Medicine.
9. Stimulates endorphins and improves the health of our psyche
Riding for more than half an hour, like any other sporting activity, allows the release of endorphins into the bloodstream. Also called “happiness hormones”, endorphins are neurotransmitters that can contribute to the feeling of well-being. The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, even talked about patients suffering from depression who have undergone real “psychotherapy” paths, showing clear improvements within one year.
10. Increase our charm
Fascinating, intelligent, attentive to the health of the planet, selfless and generous: these are the qualities attributed to the skilled cyclist, according to a study.