Cycling is one of the easiest ways to exercise


You can ride a bicycle almost anywhere, at any time of the year, and without spending a fortune. Many people are put off doing certain sports because of the high level of skill that seems to be required, or perhaps because they can’t commit to a team sport due to time pressures. Most of us know how to cycle and once you have learned you don’t forget. All you need is a bike, a half an hour here or there when it suits, and a bit of confidence.


There are many health benefits that are associated with cycling:

1. REDUCES weight when done regularly. Cycling increases calorie consumptionand raises the metabolic rate, which can help to lose weight.


2. IMPROVES control of blood pressure by 10/8 mmHg in patients with hypertension.


3. LOWERS resting heart rate. A high resting heart rate has been linked to increased death from cardiovascular disease and increased risk of sudden death after a heart attack in healthy individuals.


4. IMPROVES HDL / LDL cholesterol ratio. If the ratio of LDL to HDL is too high, that means your blood is being loaded with cholesterol faster than the HDL cholesterol can remove it, which means excess cholesterol is building up inside the tissues and arteries. Eventually hardening of the arteries, which causes most heart attacks, takes place.


5. PREVENTS heart disease. Regular cycling halves the chance of suffering from heart disease, one of the top 3 killer diseases in Malaysia. A study reported a 50% reduction in fatal and non-fatal heart disease in civil servants who cycled over 20 miles/week.


6. BENEFITS cardiovascular health. Cycling also reduces the risk of stroke and coronary heart disease. In a study, regular exercise on a static cycle machine in patients with heart failure improves cardiac function.


7. REDUCES diabetes. Exercise has been to shown to lead to a reduction in the rate of diabetes mellitus. In patients with diabetes mellitus, regular exercise leads to an improvement in control of blood sugar and can help to prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes mellitus.


8. REDUCES cancer. Physical activity has been shown to be associated with reduced rates of cancer.
9. REDUCES cholecystectomy rates in women (surgical removal of the gallbladder) .


10. BENEFITS pregnancy. Cycling when pregnant improves cardiovascular fitness. And regular exercise may ease childbirth.


11. IMPROVES muscle strength. Cycling is a non-weight bearing activity and regular cycling leads to improved muscle strength and improved mobility and coordination.

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