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Joining The Cycling Revolution

By: Mike Kiely BA (hons) - Updated: 18 Aug 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Cycling Bicycle Car Bike   pollution

There is nothing new about cycling as both a popular sport and an efficient mode of transport – just ask the Victorians. Nevertheless the past decade has seen an upsurge in interest, in part due to the problems of pollution and congestion that blight urban centres across the United Kingdom and the rest of the world.

In mainland European countries such as the Netherlands and Denmark, the numbers of people cycling never experienced the downturn that the UK saw in the years following the Second World War, when availability and affordability established the car as the mode of transport of choice.

However it is the consequences of the car’s popularity that have thrust cycling back into favour. This, in turn, has led the government to invest in programmes aimed at getting more people back on two wheels to aid both mobility and public health.

Cycling Is Back In Vogue

Evidence that the bicycle is well and truly back in vogue was highlighted by the results of a recent study by the market research company BRMB, which showed that this decade has seen a 40 percent rise in the number of adults jumping into the saddle.

The increasing popularity of cycling as a televised sport has no doubt contributed to these impressive figures. Indeed this rekindled interest within the UK was illustrated by the crowds that turned out in London to witness the beginning of the 2007 Tour de France. Such enthusiasm is replicated at various stages of the race every year as it weaves its way across the French landscape.

However, cycling does not just offer enjoyment and health benefits, and not just a more efficient way to get from A to B both in town and country, it is a sport that can be enjoyed by the whole family at the same time, thereby benefiting both adults and children in a variety of ways.

Investment in bicycle lanes in town has seen many commuters getting out of their cars and on to a bike in the past few years. The number of bicycle tracks and related facilities for those who want to road race or get down and dirty on a mountain bike have also multiplied.

Maintaining The Momentum Of Cycling

What is needed now is for this momentum to be maintained, even increased, so that 10 years from now we can look back at how cycling developed into being an integral part of the nation’s daily life. We certainly don’t want to be left regretting a missed opportunity.

Furthermore, the affordability and availability of good bicycle equipment means that cycling is increasingly accessible to people across the country. So there really is no excuse not to get on your bicycle. You’ll be making a life-changing investment that will bring big dividends in both time management and physical well being.

Cycling is certainly a lot more fun than sitting behind the wheel, waiting for the line of cars in front to edge forward a few more inches as the morning or evening rush hour stretches out into the middle distance. Pedal power has well and truly arrived. Embrace it!

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