Alongside walking and time spent in nature, cycling is becoming an increasingly popular form of recreation, sports, socializing and even tourism, known as cyclotourism. Originally constructed as a means of transport, useful in many situations even today (even when the car is not), cycling could be a solution to many causes of a sedentary lifestyle, including obesity, weight gain and diabetes. According to the World Health Organization’s report from 2009, cycling could be just the right answer to the question on how to improve public health by increasing physical activity. Therefore, it is not surprising that cycling is practiced even as a discipline in the Olympic Games’ official program.
In addition to being practical, economical and environmentally friendly, it promotes a healthy lifestyle with many benefits for our mental and physical health, just like walking, only five times more efficiently. If you ride a bike for 25 minutes daily instead a car, you are reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 165 kg per year as well as fuel consumption, noise and traffic jam. On the other hand, cycling can extend the lifespan for up to 14 months. Just as swimming, cycling is recommended for people of all ages, including the elderly, because it does not burden the knees and other joints, and improves the work of the heart and circulatory system.
The increasingly popular cycling tourism promotes active travel by visiting the natural beauties and cultural attractions in some places, and all of that by bicycle. By riding a bike, consequently, you get to know the sights of some countries better than by car, you have more freedom of movement (and parking), and yet you save time and energy that would be spent by walking. In addition, it is estimated that tourists who ride bicycles, the so-called cyclotourists averagely spent 30% more than other tourists. So, less and less adjectives such as cheap, hipster and similar are related to this type of activity, just like for the camping (https://campingplitvice.hr/we-are-celebrating-the-camping-month/?lang=en). In fact, it is considered that people who practice this form of activity have higher income, are well-educated and like to socialize in a group. Therefore, in addition to various types of cycling (sports, sports-recreational, mountain, road, cyclocross, experimental, artistic), today family cycling is becoming more popular.
In Europe, especially in countries such as France, the Netherlands, Denmark and Germany, bicycles are used as the main mode of transport, especially to work and school. Already 41 million Europeans use bicycles, while globally this number exceeds 1 trillion users, and most are coming from China and Japan. Probably this number has recently increased according to the fact that in crisis situations, such as the current Covid-19 pandemics, bicycles are practical and safe modes of transport which have a positive effect on the health as well. In New York, already at the beginning of March, the number of bicycle usage has doubled.
Cycling improves physical health, especially circulation and heart function as well as memory due to the greater flow of oxygen to the brain (after only 30 minutes of driving), activates multiple muscle groups and leads to faster loss of unwanted pounds. It also improves mental health and better mood due to the increased secretion of endorphin, a happiness hormone.
Electric bicycles today become a more ecological trend. They are like classic bicycles, only with additional batteries that are charged by electricity and electric motors that are initiated by pedalling. Hence, the so-called e-bikes help easier cycling and long-distance travel with less effort.
You can find e-bikes rental service in the Camping Plitvice’s offer and we have to tell you that surroundings sightseeing is very popular among cycling enthusiasts. Finally, our advice is to try cycling in order to do more for your health and nature.