Monday, 28 September 2015

Cycling Really is For Everyone

As you know, I am very interested in fitness. Staying healthy and active has a positive effect on how much energy you have, how you look and, most importantly, on how you feel.

There are all kinds of ways to stay fit, which is great because we are all different. A sport or type of exercise that I love may not appeal to you. In addition, health problems and age can all affect which form of activity is possible or suitable.

For example, a person in their 50s who has not done much exercise before is going to find an aerobics class too taxing whilst someone who runs regularly is likely to find the same class easy. However, some forms of exercise seem to work for virtually anyone almost regardless of their fitness levels or age. Two that sprint to mind are yoga and cycling.

They are both something that most people can manage to do at some level. Of these two all-inclusive forms of exercise, cycling is my favourite option.

Most people have ridden a bike at some stage of their lives, so they do not have to learn a new skill to be able to take part in this form of exercise. You know the saying – It’s like riding a bike – well it is true. Apparently, when you learn to ride a bike that knowledge is stowed away in your procedural memory, which is an area of the mind that stays relatively intact even in people with cognitive impairments.

For example, I recently discovered that some dementia patients are still enjoying cycling with friends and family. Some use a tandem or a side-by-side bike, but others with dementia are still enjoying riding independently with close supervision in traffic free environments.

Teaching your child to ride a bike gives them a skill that stays with them for life and one that can help them to stay fit and independent throughout their lives. It is also a great way for families to enjoy staying fit together. A cycle ride is fun and these days you do not necessarily need to take your bikes with you. In areas where there are mapped cycle routes, like nature reserves, stately homes and parks, it is usually possible to hire bikes. Although at busy times, it makes sense to book in advance.
Running your own bike

However, if you buy a bike, there is also the option to make cycling part of your daily life. Cycling to work, school or the shops is a great way to weave fitness into your day-to-day life. sells a wide range of different bikes, so if you are looking for bikes for the family they are a good place to start.

Once you get the cycling bug it usually leads to an interest in other forms of cycling that can help you to take your fitness levels to the next level. A morning spent mountain biking or road racing burns thousands of calories and is a great way of building lean muscle. Therefore, if you are looking for an easy way to get progressively fit getting on your bike is a great option. 

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