'Life is like riding a bicycle, in order to keep balance, you must keep moving' - wise words from Albert Einstein. But what if the secret to maintaining your life balance is intrinsically linked to exercise, more specifically to cycling in order to get a boost up the wellness wall? The statistics speak for themselves, a major study conducted by the British Medical Journal uncovered that cycling to work was associated with a 41% lower risk of dying overall compared to driving or using public transport. Commuting by bicycle is most popular in Denmark, a country frequently positioned at the top of the United Nations World Happiness Report, where over a third of the population regularly cycle to work. In addition, in a Dutch study by the University of Utrecht, commuters swapping from a car to a bicycle to get to work gained an increase in life expectancy of between three to fourteen months.
Cycling for Health
Cycling is an easy way to weave exercise into our daily lives, relinquishing us from the fast pace of the workplace. It is economical compared to the price of running a car and is a fantastic form of exercise, known to improve cardiovascular fitness, increase muscle strength, improve circulation and reduce body fat. It enables our bodies to be better equipped physically and mentally to be more resilient to the everyday pressures of life. With the bombardment of the achievements of others constantly highlighted to us on social media, it is becoming ever trickier to maintain a positive outlook on ourselves and on our own lives. It is important to note then that modern spiritualists identify a close connection between physical health and spiritual wellbeing.
Happiness is found on two wheels
Physical, outdoor activity boasts a host of benefits, as well as having a profound effect on our mental health. Cyclists are often said to have a greater sense of community as well as greater self esteem, indeed exercise has often been said to be the best medication. It is promoted by health professionals to alleviate stress, depression and anxiety by reducing tension as well as generating feel good endorphins. It may be that you haven't managed to sit in a saddle to find your comfort zone but it's not too late. Remember, you can't buy happiness - but you can buy a bike - which comes pretty close.
Story submitted as special contribution by Sally Writes.