Reasons to encourage children to cycle
Learning to ride a bike is a rite of passage in childhood, providing a skill for life. With the numerous benefits cycling offers, don’t let this unforgettable skill go to waste.
So what are the benefits? From improving heart health, to enhancing navigational skills, to helping the planet; let’s all encourage children to keep peddling!
Forget me not
Once mastered, knowing how to ride a bike is knowledge that stays with you for life. With the absence of having to constantly learn new skills and techniques, cycling is an easy way for children to exercise. Simply hop on the bike and away they go!
Happy and healthy heart
Being a cardiovascular activity, cycling raises your heart rate and gets the blood pumping around your body. A study conducted by the University of Glasgow found that cycling daily can reduce the risk of developing heart disease or cancer by 50 percent.
As heart rate increases whilst cycling, our lungs absorb more oxygen, increasing lung capacity and enabling more oxygen-rich blood to reach our muscles.
What’s more, a study conducted by the Healthy Air Campaign, Kings College London, and Camden Council suggests that those who cycle, in comparison to those who travel by car, are exposed to fewer dangerous fumes.
With little stress on joints, cycling can protect your child’s growing bones.
Riding a bike develops a child’s spatial awareness. By learning how to ride safely, they become aware of themselves and their constant movement, consequently enhancing their control as they navigate around obstacles.
Reducing the amount we use cars reduces the amount of harmful exhaust emissions that pollute the environment. So, the next time your child asks for a lift why not suggest they cycle if they’re old enough?
Specially for children
Children-specific bikes are available to buy. Designed to suit their growing bodies, these bikes offer children an easier and more comfortable cycle ride.
Cycling is scientifically proven to give your brain a boost. A study in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research found that people achieved higher scores on tests of memory, reasoning, and planning after 30 minutes of spinning on a stationary bike than they had done before cycling, also completing the tests faster.
Research has shown that when cycling blood flow to the brain increases by 70% in certain areas and remains raised by 40% following the conclusion of exercise. An increased amount of blood vessels in your brain means there’s more oxygen and nutrients for it to work.
Increased alertness has also been reported by teachers in regards to students who ride to school as opposed to travel by car.
We can’t deny that Google Maps has helped us out of many situations, we’re not quite sure where we’d be without it, however it’s not always readily available, perhaps you’ve lost signal or your phone has run out of battery. So developing a sense of direction from childhood certainly is of great value. Cycling enables this development of navigational skills, essential throughout life.
Gives you time and them independence
Parents know all too well that time is precious. Encouraging your children to cycle to school, to a friend’s house or to the shops invites a sense of freedom and independence whilst offering you extra time in the day.
With summer in sight make sure your bike is safe and ready for you to make the most of the outdoors. Watch our video here for simple steps on getting your bike summer ready! It’s time to power those peddles!