What are the health benefits of cycling?

From the fresh air in your face to the opportunity to explore new routes, there’s a lot to love about cycling. It also comes with a list of health benefits that make cycling a great workout.

Any type of activity offers a boost to your body and brain, but unlike other types of aerobic exercise (like jogging or walking), you can turn cycling into a high-intensity workout without putting a lot of stress on your joints.

Many of the studies looking at how cycling affects health have found that cycling just a few days a week is enough to produce the following health benefits.

1. Cycling improves aerobic fitness (without stressing the joints)

Cardiovascular or aerobic activity is an important part of physical fitness. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Physical Activity Guidelines (PDF) call for everyone over 18 to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio each week (or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity cardio), noting that more is associated with more long-term health benefits. Cycling at any intensity is one way to incorporate this type of movement.

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