The average person spends over half of their waking day sitting or reclining. Too much sedentary time is a health concern and associated with cardiometabolic diseases. Even light intensity physical activities (LIPA), such as standing, encourage musculoskeletal changes that result in health benefits. Moderate to vigorous physical activities (MVPA), such as bicycling, have been shown to improve cardiopulmonary fitness. Combining short periods of MVPA with frequent intervals of LIPA can yield the greatest cumulative energy expenditure. We love bicycling for its many benefits: it burns calories, strengthens muscles, improves coordination, and builds endurance! Bicycling is excellent for those who want to protect the knees, hips, or ankles from higher impact exercises while promoting a good range of motion and improved joint lubrication. Bicycling also thickens and strengthens ligaments, which helps prevent injury. If you already cycle, you know the countless rewards!
People with limited mobility might consider low-intensity activity in combination with stationary bike riding. The exercise benefits are still there, especially compared to a compared sedentary lifestyle! A recumbent bike is another option that works well for some people, such as those who are recovering from an injury. The seats are comfortable and allow you to sit in a reclined position with the benefit of moving the leg joints through their range of motion. During unfavorable weather, indoor bike trainers are a fantastic option to convert your outdoor bike into a stationary bike so you can keep exercising.
Whether you’re riding with friends for fun, biking to work, working out, or pedaling for injury recovery, cycling is a wonderful activity with numerous health and wellness benefits. Combining MVPA and LIPA can be an important step in reducing the health risks of a sedentary lifestyle. We hope to see you on the road!