5 Amazing Health Benefits of Mountain Biking
Mountain biking is an extreme sport that is constantly gaining popularity. In the US alone, nearly 40 million people engage in this outdoor recreational activity every year. There are good reasons for this trend, which does not revolve just around escaping the hustle and bustle of the city (albeit that is a much welcome change of scenery.) Namely, biking represents a fun and riveting way to get in shape and boost your physical and mental health. It also builds up your emotional stability. So, let us go into bit more detail and see what the main spoils that wait along the road are.
Blogs like Extreme Sports Lab point out to various perks that those engaged in extreme sports can reap. They used to fly under the radar, but the tide is turning. So, let us start with cardiovascular health. Mountain biking on a regular basis is proven to reduce the risk of coronary disease by 50%. This is because intense cycling requires the involvement of major muscle groups that demand a plenty of oxygen. And since your heart has to work steadily, its fitness rate is also increased by 3-7%.
Better mobility and balance
Mountain biking is a low-impact and non-load bearing exercise. Unlike activities like running, it does not put a great deal of stress on your joints. In fact, it tends to strengthen them, decreasing the risk of injury and improving mobility. What is more, difficult terrain forces your body to adapt in order to stay steady and secure. This process bolsters neural pathways and muscle memory. Ultimately, the lively cooperation between mind, body, and senses leads to improved balance and coordination.
Stronger immune system
Continuous workout in the form of biking reinforces immune system, your defense perimeter against various diseases. This is to say that mountain adventuring on two wheels holds the power to make your healthier. For instance, one study found that mountain bikers take half as many sick days as people with a sedentary lifestyle. Another expert publication shows that women who exercise this way decrease the risk of developing breast cancer.
Mental health benefits
Physical and mental health are closely interwoven. During vigorous biking, your body ramps up the production of endorphins. It also releases more serration, a neurotransmitter that wards off depression and anxiety. These two feel-good hormones improve overall mood and make you feel more energized. Thus, biking works like a form of meditation on the move. So, do not hesitate to hit the road, leave the worries behind, and melt away the stress. Take your self-esteem to the next level.
Mountain biking is psychically taxing and leaves you feeling quite tired. Yet, this is precisely what helps you drift away to the dreamland later and get your dosage of regenerative sleep. This is thanks to the reduced activity of cortical, hormone responsible for keeping us awake. Besides that, exposure to sunlight and fresh air raises the production of vitamin D and optimizes your circadian, sleep/wake cycle. And as you may know, regular and sound sleeping patterns are the mainstay of a healthy lifestyle.
Set the biking wheels into motion
Physical exercise is critical to our health as a society and individuals. Here, mountain biking stands out as one of those sports that are much more than a simple joyride. It has been recognized as something that contributes to addressing public health concerns such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, etc. bear also in mind that riding a bike off-road is an endeavor you quickly grow fond of. After all, you get to blow off some steam, recruit your muscles, and enjoy pristine nature. So, if you ask me, it is time to immerse in the great outdoors and watch the world fly by.