_It seems that everyone in the world knows that cycling is useful. But not everyone thinks exactly what the benefits are. And rarely anyone will say that skating can sometimes be dangerous. In order to understand the risks of driving on the universally loved form of transport, we turned to the head of the Physical Therapy Department of the Tyumen Cardiac Center Tatsiana Mitrofanova._
After all, it is worth starting with the unconditional good qualities of two-wheeled transport. The obvious benefit of times is in strengthening the muscles of the legs, cardiovascular system, prevention of varicose veins and excess weight. Cycling is a great way to toughen up and boost immunity. Skiing in open terrain is good for the eyes: looking into the distance, a person trains the eye muscle. Not to mention that such pastime provides a huge charge of cheerfulness, good mood and general emotional state.
However, unprepared long bike rides can become a risky venture for people who lead a sedentary lifestyle, people over 40 years old and those who suffer from heart disease and hypertension, says doctor Tatsiana Mitrofanova. Cycling is strenuous and untrained people can find it very difficult at first.
It’s no secret that a bicycle is often connected with injuries. At rest, it is not very stable and can fall down with the cyclist, and during movement it can fall off if you brake hard or lose control. The consequences of falls can be different – a small wound, a scratch or more serious injuries that include sprains and fractures. Riding uphill or on bumpy roads can have a harmful effect on the spine, especially for sports bike enthusiasts. “Such bicycles are ridden on an incline. Such forced exposure for a long time has a negative effect on the spine,” says the doctor.
It is not always the cyclist himself who is to blame for the injury – it can be other road users as well. In any case, to reduce the danger as much as possible, it is necessary to ride a bicycle without extremes, following the rules of the road and using protective equipment. Helmet, gloves, knee pads and goggles will significantly reduce the damage of accidental injuries.
Cycling may be the cause problems with knee joints. During cyclic movement, one bone rubs against another at their joints. With not too intense movements, cartilage tissue successfully protects bones from wear. If the same movements occur too often, the friction of the joints increases, and the cartilages can be damaged.
“The bicycle is contraindicated for people with joint injuries. They should consult a doctor and maybe choose a different type of exercise, for example, walking,” the doctor comments. In general, the load is useful as long as it does not cause pain.
Summer cycling involves excessive sweating. The risk increases dehydration, so the doctor strongly advises cyclists to follow the drinking regime and not to forget to take a bottle of water with them. Maintaining water balance will avoid problems with the same joints.
Willy-nilly, city cyclists become hostages of traffic and suffer from car exhaust gases. The lungs of people who ride a bicycle work intensively and inhale harmful fumes instead of fresh air. Tatsiana Mitrofanova’s doctor advises choosing a route that will allow you to avoid traffic as much as possible: “The air pollution on the same Republic Street is different – near the roadway and behind the first line of houses. Ideally, the safest bike ride is to ride your bike in a park zone and ride on level paths there.”
The doctor also does not deny the effect of long runs on circulation in the pelvic organs – and, as a consequence, the emergence of delicate problems in both men and women. “Staying in the saddle for a long time worsens the circulation in the pelvis. To reduce the risk of sexual dysfunction, it is necessary to perform several exercises to improve blood circulation after skiing. It can be walking with crossed steps, complicated walking,” the doctor commented.
However, the physical therapy doctor still does not tire of reminding that cycling loads are extremely useful for those who prevent all diseases, despite the possible risks. And people with heart diseases can also ride on a two-wheeled vehicle, but first they need to get a doctor’s advice – to pass a test on an exercise bike under ECG control.
According to the expert, the optimal time of cycling is 40 minutes five times a week. That’s how much cyclic load the body can tolerate without any consequences. If you went on a bicycle tour, do not forget to make stops and warm up – to maintain health.