Benefits of Cycling and Encouraging Cycling.

Health Benefits

It is well known that regular exercise improves overall health. Siting idle all day without exercise is not healthy. Cycling is a great way to stay healthy or improve ones overall health. Cycling as transport means you can do 2 things at once, therefore saving time.

Economic Benefits

Not only is cycling good for ones health, it is also good for the economy. More cycling means a healthier and more productive workforce. It means more efficient use of space, and a reduction in traffic congestion.

Better Environment

Not only do cars produce CO2, but also they produce many air pollutants that have a detrimental effect on the environment and on overall health. Carbon monoxide, for example is a gas produced by cars that is an actual poison. The space requirements of building cities for cars also create unnecessary land clearing.

Space Efficiency

The amount of space required to facilitate car travel is extraordinary. Currently in Australia the average city dedicates around 50% of total area to roads, parking or other facilities to accommodate cars. Bicycles do not need that much space for their own use. A simple photo demonstrates this.

Less Urban Sprawl

Car designed cities create what is known as urban sprawl, which means developing cities out wide and flat due to the space requirements of car dominated cities. This sprawl destroys the natural environment, removes good farming land and paves over it with vast housing tracts, leads to ever more traffic and longer times spent away from work, family, recreation, and instead being stuck in traffic.

The good farming land paved over by this sprawl means less efficient food production, higher food prices, a difficulty in getting labour to gather that food, and poorer quality food. This in tern in grains more inefficiency and car dependency, like a spiral of bad outcomes.

Saving Time

While it can be quicker to go by car then by bike, for distant locations, often riding a bike from A to B can actually be faster. Particularly when taking into account the time it takes to find a park and then walk to your destination. In equating time saved you also have to consider the saved time in not having to find other time to exercise to maintain health.

Additionally cycling yourself and doing what you can to promote city planning around walkable cities, means that distances will be shorter. There is a great quote on this, and that is that “the car first creates distance and then offers up itself as the solution to the problem it created”.