Cycling is one of the best exercises to stay healthy, and many people prefer it as an alternative to a gym workout.
Some people perform cycling to escape their hectic daily routine, while others do it as a hobby.
Regular cycling helps improve your physical fitness, flexibility, joint mobility, control blood glucose, fight against cancer and improve mental health.
This article will discuss the seven health benefits of regular cycling.
Weight loss is one of the significant health benefits of cycling. In addition, cycling is an excellent cardio training that can improve your heart health and boost metabolism.
On top of that, this workout training also burns fat faster and ultimately helps reduce weight.
In fact, a 2017 study shows that people who have no time to join a gym to work out due to lack of time due to their work routine can get similar health benefits by cycling to work.
To reap the best results while cycling, it is required to gradually increase the intensity (speed and distance), add 2 to 3 HIIT sessions weekly and take a healthy diet.
Build muscles mass and strength
Riding a bike does not just lead to weight loss. It also helps build muscles and strengths.
Muscle groups of the lower extremity of the body, such as glutes, hamstrings, calves, and quadriceps, benefit from cycling.
Continuous involvement of these muscles in the cycling tones them and increases their muscle mass, thus, leading to their strengthening.
Evidence also shows that cycling induces hypertrophy in young and old age people. At the same time, strength gain seems to be more prominent in older adults.
Improve heart health
For a healthy heart, cycling is one of the best options.
Riding a bike demand more oxygen and nutrient for the muscles of the lower extremity. This increased demand is supplied by increasing heart rate.
Increasing pressure on the heart to increase output leads to strengthening heart muscles. In addition, cycling also lowers the resting heart rate.
Improve blood lipids, and glucose control also leads to better heart health.
A study found that cyclists who biked regularly had 15 per cent lower chances of heart attack than noncyclists.
Another meta-analysis also suggests that cycling is associated with a lower incidence of heart diseases and death.
Boost mental health
Cycling is a beautiful way to boost the mood.
Riding a bike regularly gives a spirit that enhances brainpower and reduces stress, depression, and anxiety, thus promoting your mental health.
This is because exercise releases endorphins, chemicals that lower the pain sensation and stress.
Evidence shows that exercises such as cycling help reduce generalized anxiety along with anxiety-related bodily sensations.
Moreover, cycling with music is a mindful experience that helps you escape your mentally exhausting problems.
A study suggests that riding a bike can help improve cognitive function and well-being among older adults.
Lowers the risk of cancer
Cycling lowers the incidence of cancers. A study found a 16% lower risk of dying from cancer and an 11% lower risk of diagnosis with cancer if you cycle regularly.
According to a study, obesity is one of the critical risk factors for common cancers, especially the cancers of the digestive tract, liver, breast, ovary and uterine.
Cycling helps reduce the risk of cancer primarily by preventing obesity. A study also shows that riding a bike significantly reduces the incidence of cancer.
Therefore, the more you are physically active, the less chance you have to develop chronic diseases like cancer.
Improve posture and flexibility
Cycling improves proprioception (the ability of joins to sense movement and location), flexibility and posture.
In addition, when riding a bike, you keep your body upright and thus practice balancing the body.
During cycling, your back remains straight while whole body muscles get engaged, therefore improving the coordination and balance of different body parts.
A study also supports that even stationary cycling can help prevent falls by improving the balance of adults.
Control blood glucose
Whether you want to manage or prevent diabetes, riding a bike regularly is the right approach.
Diabetes is all about elevated blood glucose levels due to a lack of insulin or insufficient insulin activity (insulin resistance) in the body. Obesity and physical inactivity is the reason for insulin resistance.
Cycling is a cardio workout that utilizes glucose in the blood for energy production. In addition, it improves insulin sensitivity.
All these facts favour regular cycling and help reduce blood glucose, thus preventing the development of diabetes and improving blood glucose in diabetic patients.
The Bottom Line
Cycling is a low-impact exercise that is performed by many people around the world.
Regular cycling provides many health benefits such as improved heart health, weight loss, and strong muscles.
In addition, cycling also helps boost your mood, improves posture, and reduces the chance of chronic diseases such as diabetes and cancer.