The Benefits of Riding – Why So Many People Give Up Their Cars For Two Wheels
The past year has taught everyone a lot – and one of the main takeaways was to slow down. During this period of self-reflection and reassessment, great changes have been made and priorities have shifted. For some, that means drastically reducing the size, like giving up your car for two wheels. With fewer opportunities to travel and a lot more work from home, you might have wondered if your lifestyle might need an overhaul and if the benefits of biking are enough to make you reconsider your primary mode of transportation.
Market trends prove that there is greater interest in bicycles than ever before, a fact which is largely attributed to people’s growing environmental awareness. According to a recent article from Yahoo! Finance, the size of the global bicycle market is expected to reach $ 92.49 billion over the next seven years, with buyers highlighting interest in more active recreation, ease of short journeys and reduced pollution from emissions are some of the main reasons to cycle more and drive less.
While there are many benefits to making this change (more on those to come), there are a few things to consider if you’re someone relatively new to cycling. For example, not all bikes are created the same. “There are so many directions to go in buying bikes that it can be quite overwhelming,” says Lauren Abrahamian, director of marketing and sales for tokyobike. “The first thing I usually ask anyone who thinks about riding more is ‘where and when do you see yourself riding a bike the most?’ City bikes are deigned for cities and mountain bikes for mountains – you don’t have to get into too much technical stuff unless you want to, just pick a category and start comparing models from there .
Abrahamian also stresses the importance of fit when shopping for bikes. “Make sure the bike will suit not only your lifestyle and needs, but also you – I can’t tell you how much it pains me to see people riding bikes that are too big or too small. for them, ”she explains, adding a test drive is better if that’s an option. That said, she does encourage you to use your instincts for aesthetics. “Pick a bike that you like to watch and that appeals to you,” she continues. “The best bike for you is the one you like and begs you to ride.”
And if you’re just getting started, you’ll want to invest in a few other things to help you get around safely and more conveniently. Abrahamian says that a flatbed repair kit, stand, and basket or bag can help, but a good helmet is an absolute must. “If you’re riding in any capacity, you should definitely get a helmet – and like your bike, it should definitely look like something you don’t mind putting on,” she explains. And according to Dustin Gyge, founder of 6threezero, night lights are also essential. “If you are going to be riding at night, lights are a must, especially if you are on a bike path,” he says. “Funny as it sounds, a bell or horn is a great idea, especially if you’re going to be cycling in crowded places.”
If knowing some of the things you need to ride a better and more regular bike hasn’t already made you switch to two-wheeled more often, learning some specific benefits – sustainably and otherwise – might encourage you even more. . Beforehand, find out what some cycling and environmental experts have to say on the subject, then browse a few bikes, accessories, and more if you’re feeling that inclined.
The benefits of cycling: reducing your carbon footprint
Are you wondering how to be more sustainable in your daily lifestyle? Riding a bike when you don’t have to use a car can be a game-changer for several reasons. First, there is the issue of emissions. “The transportation sector is responsible for the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions in America,” says Marc Lewis, Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of Ecowatch. “Although several major automakers have announced their intention to stop selling gasoline vehicles in the coming years and switch to fully electric cars, the transportation sector still produces more greenhouse gases than any other industry. Giving up cars and using bicycles instead would therefore be the most effective way to reduce our emissions. “
And Peter Yuskauskas, vice president of Brompton Bicycle adds that even e-bikes have a huge advantage over cars. “From an emissions point of view, human-powered bicycles are a given, but even an electric bicycle generates only 300 kg of CO2 per 15,000 miles, while a car emits a whopping 7,000 kg (23 times more) He said.
There is also the issue of occupied space. “The more people who switch from driving to bikes, the less demand there is for wide roads and parking lots,” says Erik Rolfsen, editor of the bicycle blog Pedal Street. And Lewis agrees. “Think about all the space needed to create, move and store cars,” he says. “Bicycles, on the other hand, have a much smaller geographic footprint because they require fewer resources to make, transport and park them. Imagine the number of cycle lanes that could fit on each road and the number of bicycle garages that could replace each parking lot. ”
The benefits of cycling: saving money
Reduce your budget? The savings from using your car less and riding a more bicycle might be enough to influence you. “Cycling costs you less – a lot less,” says Rolfsen. “Your savings on car payments, fuel, insurance, repairs and maintenance will likely run up to almost $ 2,000 a year if you commute every day – even if you have to. go out and buy a new bike. ” And Yuskauskas adds that you can use that money for other quality of life improvements like more travel if it’s on your 2021 bucket list.
The benefits of cycling: more physical activity
You may have heard the saying “sit down is the new smoking”, and while there is some discrepancy in that wording, the fact is that too sedentary living can be harmful. According to an article by Harvard Health Edition, spending too many hours sitting is dangerous for your health. “Habitual inactivity increases the risk of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, deep vein thrombosis and metabolic syndrome,” he explains.
Imagine trading in some of your usual sitting hours in your car ride to do more cardio on your bike. The Harvard article explains that cycling can be a great form of exercise for a variety of types because it is gentle on the joints, improves cardiovascular health, can increase bone density, and releases endorphins. As always, be sure to talk to your regular doctor to make sure that increasing this type of physical activity is best for your body.
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