Bicycling – Your Best Exercise

I love bicycles. I’m always riding my bicycle quite a lot in summer. I’ve even participated in organized 100 mile rides in Prince Edward County. Bicycling is absolutely my favorite form of exercise. Bicycles have been around for over a 100 years and are a very efficient and green form of transportation. Riding a bicycle is an excellent form of exercise which will work your muscles, heart, lungs and at the same time doesn’t put undo stress on your joints.

Bicycles come in different styles and price ranges starting with a basic Canadian Tire or Wal-Mart model for fewer than two hundred dollars all the way up to specialized lightweight racing bicycles that may cost several thousand dollars.

Whatever your needs or budget is, there is a bicycle for you. Unfortunately many beginning or casual bike riders are on bikes that don’t fit them properly. To make bicycling bio-mechanically efficient and therefore more comfortable, the bike should be fitted to the rider. A bike that is too big or small will be less comfortable, and requires more effort to ride. To get a proper fit several factors should be considered. These include frame size, seat height, handle bar height and how far you have to reach to the handle bars. If you’re feeling discomfort when you’re riding then you can be sure something is wrong with the way you’re fitted to your bike. The human body has a certain degree of adaptability and bikes have a good degree of adjustability. It’s a matter of mating the two to get the best fit and most efficient position to ride. Good fit isn’t as critical to a causal rider as it is to a racer, but is still very important if you want to be comfortable. Common complaints when riding a poor fitting bike include knee pain or discomfort in your neck, shoulders or low back.

Detailed information about how to fit a bike is available on the internet or in books on bicycling. People who work at good bicycle shop will also be able to fit you properly.

I’d love to see more people riding bicycles. It’s not only good for them but good for the environment. I’ll also always recommend wearing a helmet. Another good safety device that is often ignored by cyclists is the rear view mirror. In my many years of riding and racing bicycles I have found that most motorists are courteous. It’s the small percentage that you have to look out for. Under our highway act bicycles have all the same rights on the road as motor vehicles. Unfortunately there are a few that seem to forget this. So ride safe.