Cycling among seniors has been on the rise for years, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to a recent survey, many seniors even said they couldn’t envision a time when they’d stop cycling!
It doesn’t matter if you’re a senior yourself looking to take your cycling regimen to the next level or someone interested in getting your elderly loved one interested in cycling. An eBike (short for an electric bicycle) could be the perfect solution.
Are eBikes good for seniors? What benefits do they offer? Our guide answers these questions and more.
Benefits of eBikes for Seniors
The short answer to the question “Are eBikes good for seniors?” is a resounding yes!
Seniors can experience all kinds of positive outcomes when they add eBiking to their routine.
The following are some of the top reasons why seniors should consider taking up eBiking:
Many seniors initially get into cycling because of its preventative health benefits.
Riding eBikes is a great way for seniors to meet their cardiovascular training requirements (150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of intense exercise).
Meeting these exercise requirements reduces the risk of developing several chronic diseases, including the following:
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Type 2 diabetes
- Certain types of cancer (including breast cancer, colon cancer, endometrial cancer, prostate cancer, and possibly pancreatic cancer)
What makes eBiking so effective?
First, riding an eBike targets various muscle groups and internal systems simultaneously. Adding regular eBike trips into your exercise routine can strengthen your lower body and core muscles. More strength will improve your balance and stability.
Electric biking can also improve your heart and lung health and speed up your metabolism, bringing you closer to your weight loss goals.
Manage Existing Conditions
Let’s say you’ve already been diagnosed with one or more of the above mentioned conditions. That doesn’t mean you can’t still benefit from riding an eBike.
Consistent cardiovascular exercise like eBiking can slow the spread of disease and prevent existing conditions from worsening.
In some cases, you might even reverse your health conditions altogether.
Imagine you’re overweight or obese and dealing with Type 2 diabetes. Your ability to regulate blood sugar levels on your own could improve significantly if you lose weight with regular eBike workouts.
Riding an eBike can also aid in managing conditions like arthritis and chronic pain.
Regular exercise improves circulation. Better circulation can improve recovery, minimizing pain and soreness.
Because it promotes weight loss, eBiking may also minimize ongoing aches and pains. It does this by reducing the amount of pressure you place on the joints during daily activities.
Enhance Joint Health
In addition to combating joint pain associated with arthritis, regularly riding an eBike can improve joint mobility and range of motion.
eBike riding is a low-impact form of exercise. This means it’s a good fit for those who haven’t exercised in a long time or struggle with stiffness and limited joint mobility.
Electric biking allows you to get your blood flowing. However, it isn’t too hard on the muscles and joints (particularly the knee and hip joints).
Also, remember that regular exercise — such as eBike riding — can prevent additional damage to the joints and prevents your range of motion from worsening. If you’re already dealing with some joint-related issues, cycling boosts your blood flow and maintains or improves your joint health.
Increase Bike Safety and Reliability
Cycling is an excellent way for seniors to improve their health and exercise regularly. At the same time, though, seniors also face some of the highest rates of cycling-related accidents (crashes, falls, etc.).
eBikes combat this issue by increasing bike safety and reliability for seniors.
Many seniors find it easier to navigate uneven terrain on an eBike compared to a regular bike. This improved navigation allows them to travel safely and run errands without worrying as much about falling.
The electric power-assist function on eBikes is especially beneficial to seniors.
If a senior rider struggles to climb a hill alone, the throttle propels them forward and reduces the need to pedal. This feature allows seniors to take a break when needed and still get where they need to go.
Seniors with balance issues can consider an electric tricycle, like the EVELO Compass
Improve Brain Health
Exercise of any kind doesn’t only benefit the heart, lungs, and joints. It also improves brain health and cognitive function.
Supporting one’s cognitive health with regular exercise can reduce the risk of developing diseases like Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease.
Research has shown that riding eBikes is particularly effective for those looking to support their cognitive health. A study published by PLOS One shows that older adults who ride electric bikes for 30 minutes three times per week saw improvements in their brain function.
At the beginning of the study, the researchers hypothesized that those who rode standard bikes would see more improvements than those who rode eBikes. The opposite was actually true.
Electric bike riders scored just as well as standard bike riders in cognitive tests. However, the eBike riders showed slightly better processing speeds and a better overall sense of well-being.
If you’re looking for a type of exercise that improves your physical health and promotes more mental sharpness, eBiking could be the perfect solution.
According to the American Psychological Association, self-esteem and confidence sharply decline with age. Many seniors struggle with a lack of confidence, which can hold them back from trying new things. Low self-esteem can even impact their physical and mental well-being.
The good news is that eBiking provides seniors with a safe, effective method for exercising and increasing their confidence.
Mastering a new skill — or engaging in an activity they once enjoyed — can help seniors feel more confident and capable.
Furthermore, riding an electric bike gives seniors a sense of independence. It also reminds them that they can still do things for themselves, regardless of their age.
Exercise produces endorphins. Endorphins are chemical messengers that boost mood, reduce pain, and improve one’s sense of well-being.
Riding eBikes allows seniors to safely and consistently exercise and enjoy the mood-boosting benefits of endorphins. With regular exercise comes a reduced risk of depression (which affects over 7 million seniors) and reduced anxiety (which affects 10-20 percent of seniors).
eBikes can be particularly beneficial for seniors struggling with mental health challenges. This is because they give them an excuse to get outside regularly.
Spending time outdoors boosts vitamin D production and may improve mood even more than exercising indoors.
Enjoy More Socialization Opportunities
Approximately 25 percent of seniors report feeling lonely or socially isolated. For seniors who can’t drive and don’t feel comfortable walking places alone, the chances of feeling lonely or isolated increase even more.
Electric bikes can combat this issue.
eBikes provide a safe and reliable way for seniors to travel around their neighborhoods. Access to safe transportation increases seniors’ socialization opportunities. It also makes connecting with friends and loved ones easier.
Riding eBikes can connect seniors with other cyclists their same age. Many groups create opportunities for senior eBike riders of all levels to get together, make friends, and exercise all at once.
Choose from Multiple Options
Electric bikes come in a wide range of types and styles, with many different motors, tires, frames, handlebar styles, and more. This multitude of options makes it easy for seniors to find a bike that allows them to ride safely and comfortably.
Seniors can also customize their electric bikes to make them even more comfortable. These customizations also accommodate specific preferences or conditions that hinder their riding abilities.
No matter your limitations, you can almost certainly find an eBike that works for you.
How to Choose eBikes for Seniors
Do any of these benefits sound appealing to you? Are you intimidated by all the different types of eBikes on the market?
If you know you want to start riding an eBike but aren’t sure where to start, here are some key factors to consider when shopping for your first bike:
- Tires: Look for anti-skid tires to reduce the likelihood of falls and injuries
- Fenders: Tire coverings that prevent splashes and protect the eBike from damage
- Frame: Step-thru frames are great for seniors because they enable them to get on and off the bike more easily
- Seating Position: An upright seating position reduces joint pain and increases comfort while riding
- Handlebar Placement: Higher handlebars reduce bending and increase comfort while riding
- Motor and Batter Power: Avoid buying an eBike that’s too powerful (over 750 watts) to reduce the risk of losing control and crashing
Keep these factors in mind when testing out eBikes to find one that’s comfortable and meets your (or your loved one’s) unique needs.
Start Searching for eBikes Today
From better health to more socialization opportunities, there are tons of reasons for seniors to invest in electric bikes.
Are you ready to hit the road, or do you have more questions about choosing or maintaining eBikes for seniors?
Either way, we’re here for you at Evelo. Purchase your ebike today. If have any questions, reach out to us by phone at 877-991-7272 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We can’t wait to help you get out there and enjoy all the benefits of electric bicycles!