Staying physically active helps to ensure that you stay fit and healthy. In fact, with regular physical activity, you can limit the risk of dangerous diseases and conditions such as cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and arthritis. What’s more, being physically active has also been proven to have a positive impact on mental health, reducing stress, improving sleep, and boosting mood. And since bike riding can affect your brain and stress level, using a bike frame size chart may help you to get a comfortable bike so you can improve your overall wellbeing too!
In fact, when it comes to staying physically active, you should choose an activity that is fun, sociable and that gives you a great workout. Biking ticks all the boxes and is a sport that has a quick learning curve. Getting started is as easy as, well, riding a bike! Cycling is the perfect activity to boost your mental and physical health, meet new people, and spend more time outside in the fresh air and warm sunshine.
Let’s take a look at just a few ways that getting out on your bikes can benefit both your brain and your body.
Increase Cardiovascular Fitness
Pumping the pedals to propel yourself along the road or the trails is a great way to get your blood pumping and improve your cardio fitness. Cycling is one of the best forms of cardiovascular fitness, as it requires you to work hard while you’re in the saddle. Working up a sweat requires your heart to have to work harder to pump oxygen around the body, resulting in your becoming fitter over time.
Lower Stress Levels
Exercise has been proven to reduce stress and biking is no exception. Aerobic exercise, where your body is using oxygen, can significantly reduce levels of cortisol, also known as the ‘stress hormone’. Cycling regularly also means spending more time outdoors, which can also have a positive impact on stress levels.
Improve Strength and Flexibility
Cycling incorporates the use of large muscle groups such as the hamstrings, quadriceps, calves, and glutes. Your core will also need to be activated to keep you upright as you pedal forward and your shoulders and upper back can also get more of a workout than you might think. Regular time in the saddle will help you to become stronger and more movement will also increase flexibility.
Reduce Anxiety and Depression
Aerobic exercise like cycling causes the release of endorphins, more commonly referred to as ‘the happy hormone’. An endorphin release will instantly boost your mood and it is what is attributed to the euphoric feeling runners get, often referred to as “runners high”. This can help to combat anxiety and depression, helping people to feel more relaxed, at ease, and generally in a more positive mood. After a long bike ride, you will also have a great sense of achievement, boosting self-esteem and helping you to feel better about yourself and your achievements in the saddle.
Better Coordination and Posture
Riding a bike requires excellent coordination. You need to be aware of what is happening all around you, while operating the pedals, brakes, and gears at the same time, improving coordination. To keep your balance when you’re cycling, you will also need to stay correctly aligned with your bike and engage your core to stay in full control, which can positively impact your posture.
Get on Your Bike to Improve Your Physical and Mental Health
Cycling is an excellent activity that can help you to stay in shape, keep fit, and build strength and flexibility. Join a cycling group, recruit your friends or head out on a cycling adventure with your family and start enjoying all of the health benefits that cycling has to offer.