Why Bike Riding Can Increase Mobility for Seniors
For many seniors, mobility can be limited due to health reasons. Fortunately, various innovations in mobility have allowed seniors to once again live independently by increasing their mobility through alternative means. One of these innovations that have been having great success in increasing mobility for seniors is e-bikes.
After 65, you may find it more challenging to get around your city on foot or use public transportation because of the extra weight you may be carrying around your body. If you’re looking to increase your mobility, purchasing an e-bike can be a great choice because of its ability to deliver the power necessary to support your journey with little effort. One e-bike manufacturer, Hovsco bikes, offers affordable and lightweight models perfect for older adults who want to ride but aren’t sure they can handle traditional bikes or have never tried before.
How Bike Riding can Benefit Seniors
If you're a senior and want to get around the city but lack the physical mobility to drive, an e-bike may be the solution you’re looking for. E-bikes are bicycles that have been outfitted with an electric motor to assist you with pedaling up hills and over long distances, making them the perfect option for people who want to live more independently in their old age or who are recovering from an injury.
Some seniors opt to ride electric bikes, which can be safer and easier to ride than traditional bicycles. Electric bikes are ideal for limited mobility or balance issues because you do not have to shift gears or pedals. Electric bicycles are often equipped with front shock absorbers that smooth out bumps in the road and assist riders in handling curves and hills. A full charge of an electric bike usually lasts at least two hours of continuous riding, which is plenty of time to get around town. And best of all, you can pedal as much or as little as you want on an electric bike, keeping your energy level high while reducing wear and tear on your joints.
The most important aspect of mobility for seniors is safety. Even if it is your only option, driving isn’t necessarily safe. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that nearly 2.3 million people are injured, and over 36,000 people are killed each year in motor vehicle accidents. Meanwhile, 0 people are killed while riding a bike each year in an accident with a motor vehicle, according to data compiled by Bicycling Magazine. It’s not even a close call for safety; biking beats driving, hands down. In addition to being safer than driving, cycling can also be safer than walking in some situations.
Riding e-bikes can be a big win regarding our impact on Mother Nature. It’s a zero-emission form of transportation that’s good for everyone and incredibly beneficial to those who have trouble walking—seniors, families with young children, or people with disabilities. For these individuals, biking can be easier than walking because they don’t have to lift their feet up and down all day.
If you live in a city that makes it easy to ride your bike around, you can connect with the community and get more exercise. Our physical fitness levels begin to slip as we age, but biking is a great way to remedy that. Not only does cycling help your cardiovascular health by getting your heart pumping, but it also builds muscle tone. By keeping active, you’ll stay young at heart and improve your physical capabilities. While research is limited on specific health benefits of cycling later in life, there are plenty of anecdotal cases of seniors who find their quality of life drastically improved by taking up bike riding regularly.
Freedom of movement
As we age, our bodies naturally become stiffer. And while that’s a natural part of aging, it can slow us down and even make everyday tasks more difficult. If you’re looking to boost your mobility, try bike riding. It’s easier on joints than other types of physical activity. It can be done almost anywhere and offers mental benefits like improving focus and lowering stress levels—not to mention it feels incredible. As with any new activity or exercise routine, talk with your doctor before beginning biking if you have any health conditions or limitations that may impede your ability to ride a bike safely and comfortably.
The most immediate benefit of starting an exercise routine is reducing one’s risk of developing debilitating diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. According to a recent study published in The Lancet, if people aged 50-69 years old engaged in at least two-and-half hours of moderate activity per week (like bike riding), they could reduce their risk of premature death by 42 percent and their chance of developing cardiovascular disease by 33 percent. Even those who only exercised half as much were still able to reduce their chances of premature death by 31 percent. Overall, increasing physical activity among aging adults is essential because physical limitations associated with diseases often result in decreased mobility and quality of life, reducing depression and even cognitive decline.
The heart is a muscle too, so it’s only natural that seniors need to keep their hearts in shape by exercising. Try biking on a stationary bike. You can also bike to your destination instead of taking public transportation or driving if you have access to a bicycle and a safe place to ride. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends adults over age 65 get at least 2.5 hours of moderate aerobic activity each week. And even more, if they suffer from chronic conditions like high blood pressure or diabetes.
Whether it’s due to a physical ailment or an ailment of age, finding ways to stay mobile can be crucial for your health and well-being. As you get older, mobility often decreases, and even seemingly simple tasks can become exhausting. But staying active is key to living longer and in better health. Getting out there on a bike is one way to increase your mobility as you age. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start pedaling. By following these guidelines, you can increase your mobility while reducing your risk of developing related health problems.
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