Benefits of Bike riding during and post COVID- 19
This has been a challenging time for most of us. COVID-19 has dramatically changed our way of life, ranging from the way we work, where we travel and how we socialise with family and friends. Now, more than ever, it’s important to take care of our mental and physical wellbeing. For those who can, a daily bike ride in our neighbourhood can be a great way to get exercise – and help the planet too.
Here are some key benefits of bike riding:
- Mental health
Bike riding can be a real mood lift! This is because exercise in the fresh stimulates a rush of “happy” hormones (endorphins) to the brain, which in turn can help you manage stress and anxiety levels.
Our Sustainability Advisor, Sophia White, usually rides to work because when she does, it makes her feel so much happier. “A couple of times I have gotten up before work to ride which has been an enjoyable start to the day and made life seem more normal for me. Otherwise, it’s very easy to do very little exercise during the working day with being stuck at home.. To me, riding my bike is pure joy! It keeps me fit and happy and I’ve been able to enjoy the stunning views from cycling up the hills!”
Bike riding and other outdoor exercise can also boost creativity and productivity. At times we feel stuck on one problem and can’t find a solution - so next time you have a mental block or need to be inspired, go for a bike ride and see whether it sharpens your problem-solving skills.
- Physical health
Aside from our mental health, bike riding has great physical health benefits. Since most of us are unable to go to our local gym, we can keep ourselves active by riding our bikes.
According to the Heart Foundation it is recommended to do at least 30 minutes of activity each day to help improve your heart health, which can help to reduce the risk of heart disease. But sometimes it is not always easy to get yourself motivated during this time. Bike riding is a convenient and great way to incorporate regular exercise in your day to day life.
- Environmental benefits
We are already experiencing some of the environmental benefits of having less cars on the road. Bike riding is not only good for the mental and physical wellbeing, but also for environment.
Sophia says, “Biking is important because it keeps us fit, keeps our emissions low and with less cars on the road at the moment, its much safer.” Many kiwis have taken up cycling to keep fit within our local bubbles. Extending the bike riding culture post COVID-19 will have other added benefits, like less congestion and less greenhouse gas emissions from passenger cars.
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