In Italy it is bike-mania! Practical, fun and ecological, the “two wheels” is suitable for everyone, from children to the elderly, through managers who now choose it as a status symbol of freedom, speeding through the office, getting rid of the infernal traffic of our metropolis. The reasons for being a bike addicted , therefore, are not lacking, in fact, cycling is good for both the environment and our body, and there are even those who say that it also makes you happier, because it reduces stress and acts against depression . If you are still undecided, today we want to tell you all the good reasons to ride a bike is a choice of health that allows you to combine fun and fitness.

RIDING A BIKE IS GOOD? 5 REASONS TO RIDE

Family cycling holidays

The bike is a means of transport that more and more like the Italians, who for several years, more and more often, choose it for the holidays: a survey conducted by Linear Observatory of the Services, in fact, reveals that an Italian out of three in ‘summer 2014 has declared the intention to want to take a cycling holiday , even in the family.

Approaching children on two wheels is a good choice because it represents a health investment for their future, obviously without neglecting the right safety precautions. Let’s see, then, what are the 5 good reasons why cycling is good :

  1. Protects the heart
    Pedaling helps to train the heart muscle, keeps it stronger and accustoms it to resist fatigue. Not only that, cycling is good for the whole cardiovascular system, because it improves circulation in the lower limbs and avoids the onset of swelling in the legs.
  2. Improves musculature
    Even without being a professional cyclist, riding a bike is good for the muscles as it improves the tone of buttocks, calves and lumbar muscles of the spine.
  3. Helps to lose weight
    Being an aerobic activity is recommended for those who want to lose the extra pounds, especially for menopausal women who must be careful weight. In fact, one hour of cycling helps burn up to 500 calories and is also recommended in home fitness , where it is replaced with an exercise bike.
  4. Preserves the joints
    Unlike the race , for example, cycling does not stress knees, femurs and ankles because 50% of the body weight is discharged on the buttocks and the saddle.
  5. Strength
    training Cyclists have greater energy and physical endurance because they are fatigue trained and have to deal with friction, gravity and air-induced resistance.

This is why if it is true that riding a bike is good, we must never forget that it is a sport of resistance, so training , gradualness and attention to certain measures that can improve our experience on ” are important. ” two wheels”. Let’s see together what are the tips for those who do not practice cycling as a sport, but also wants to use it on a daily basis to move comfortably.

RIDING A BIKE IS GOOD, BUT WHAT A STRUGGLE!

Cycling is good

How many times have we thought it! Yet it is not always said that the word cycling is synonymous with suffering and sweat. Of course, professionals or mountain bikers know what it means to ride for whole days, on any terrain and with any weather conditions, however, there are many amateur cyclists, amateurs or who only pedal to move around the city, for which it can be useful know some tips to reduce fatigue and improve the bike’s functioning . To start, it is good to know what effort we are subjected to when we ride a bicycle.

WHAT KIND OF EFFORT DOES THE BIKE PUT US?

Pedaling is a repetitive movement that requires efforts of a different nature: muscle fatigue , more easily recognizable, that sensory , or brain fatigue that must handle multiple impulses to make eyes, hearing and muscles work, and finally, cardiorespiratory fatigue , since it increases the beating, the blood pressure and the consumption of oxygen. To not give up the bike and its many benefits, we recommend some “tricks” that will help us combat fatigue and resist physical exertion.

HOW TO RIDE A BIKE WITHOUT (TOO MUCH) EFFORT

We have seen that riding a bike is good for our body, but even if you do not choose it as a competitive sport, it is good to pay attention to some precautions that can improve our comfort and protect health, without unnecessarily pressing the back and giving up excessive efforts. To go cycling without too much effort the aspects to be considered involve the maintenance of the bicycle, the driving and the psycho-physical state:
mechanical means

  • choose a frame of your size to avoid losing energy
  • choose the tires suitable for the type of terrain in order to get the right grip
  • check the wheel pressure
  • take care of the lubrication of the metal components to reduce friction

Driving style

  • pedal easily, keeping 90-100 paces a minute even on the road, in order to better manage the energy, do not tire the legs and be reactive on braking and restarting
  • avoid the saddles
  • do not weigh down with backpacks

Organic efficiency

  • improve flexibility by doing 10 minutes of yoga, pilates or stretching a day
  • hydrate by drinking water, not just when it’s hot
  • do not ride a bike with a full stomach. Knowing what to eat before playing sports is important as slow digestion steals energy from the body.

Riding the right way , with the right precautions is as important as training, to reduce the risk of injury and especially not to give up a fun means of transport, whose benefits are known and affordable for everyone. It’s really like this? Yes, let’s debunk some false beliefs about cycling.

CYCLING IS NOT GOOD? SOME FALSE MYTHS

Cycling

In general, even if you choose the “two wheels” as a simple means of transport, it is good practice to listen to your needs, calibrate the effort according to age and physical condition and contact your doctor. We can say that cycling is not among the recommended sports during pregnancy , but otherwise riding a bike is practically always good , even as a sport for children and even men, despite some false myths about it.

In fact, compared to what is believed, there is no correlation between cycling and the onset of prostate problems . A study in London in 2014 clarified this aspect well by specifying that there is no relationship between the saddle and the prostate: simply, cyclists are subject to more controls and are more attentive to prevention, so they discover more frequently than others the problems of prostate, succeeding in many cases to intervene in time. The speech is different for those who already suffer from prostate problems, so the bicycle can only be used following specific measures, for which it is good to consult a doctor.

It’s not all. Even cycling is useful for those who have had a heart attack , in addition to therapy and healthy lifestyles, in particular by giving up smoking and sticking to a post-infarct diet . The use of the bicycle, in fact, under medical control and low intensity, can improve the cardiovascular system , with benefits for the heart, weight, cholesterol, oxygenation and also for the mood. Provided you do not overdo it, do periodic checks and proceed gradually!

CONTRAINDICATIONS

Therefore, there are no particular contraindications in going on a bike. However, the precautions we have seen regarding the mechanical means are particularly important also to avoid annoying disturbances, especially back pain . Among the causes of a low back inflammation that can affect cyclists, in fact, we find:

  • bicycle of different size from their own (they work like the sizes of clothes)
  • errors in the regulation of bicycle measurements
  • wrong driving style

Even the lack of gradualness and poor training can contribute to developing pains and injuries, which compromise the well-being of cycling.

Cycling safety

Furthermore, if one moves in the city traffic, the risk of accidents is added to that of accidents. The advice for cyclists, therefore, is to think first of all about safety and protection : never forget the helmet and, even better, think of a policy that protects, guaranteeing the rehabilitation therapies you might need.

Now that you know why riding a bike is good , you just have to devote yourself to other practices recommended for a healthy lifestyle, which aims to longevity. We will talk about it at the conference  “Unlike young people, how to live up to 120 years” , which will be held on  Saturday 9 September 2017 in Bologna,   in the Sala degli Acts of Palazzo Re Enzo, from 16.00 to 18.00. To the speeches of physicians and professors experts in immunology, nutrition and sport, moderated by  Tiberio Timperi , will follow the testimony of the swimming champion  Massimiliano Rosolino  and the athletes of  the Italian National Boxing Team . We are waiting for you!