A bicycle is a pedal-powered two-wheeled vehicle that a person rides. The word bike is shorthand for bicycle, and it may also refer to a motorbike or scooter. Bicyclists are known as cyclists. People who ride bikes for sport or exercise are called recreational cyclists. Cycling is an excellent form of exercise that strengthens the muscles, increases cardiovascular health, and burns calories. It can be as low-intensity as walking or riding a stationary bike, or as challenging as cycling up and down hills. Cycling also improves coordination and stamina, and it is easier on the joints than many other forms of physical activity.
Cycling is one of the most popular sports in the world. It is fun, easy to learn, and can be adapted for different abilities. It provides a great workout, and it can be done at almost any time or place. Cycling can also be less expensive than most other forms of exercise. A good bicycle is important for anyone who wants to enjoy cycling.
The first step in learning to ride a bike is to get comfortable with the basic form. Begin by placing your right foot on the pedal and supporting yourself with your left leg. Start pedaling slowly and try to maintain your balance as you go. Once you have mastered the basics, begin to add speed and try to turn your handlebars. Be sure to keep your balance and always wear a helmet!
Bicycles have mechanical moving parts, and as such they require regular maintenance. Some of these can be done with simple tools, while others need to be serviced by a specialist. The International Organization for Standardization has a technical committee for cycles, TC149, which covers “Standardization in the field of bicycles, their components and accessories with particular reference to terminology, testing methods and requirements for performance and safety, and interchangeability.”
In addition to being an excellent form of exercise, biking is fun and social. It is a great way to spend time with friends, and it can even help you meet new people. Studies have shown that people who cycle regularly have lower rates of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity than those who do not ride. Moreover, cycling is a good way to relieve stress. A study by the University of California found that socializing while cycling releases oxytocin, which helps you relax and feel calm.
The most common bicycle accidents involve the bicyclists themselves. These include failure to wear a helmet, going against the flow of traffic, running a stop sign, and swerving into oncoming or crossing traffic. Bicyclists can also injure themselves by crashing into trees, other bikes, or pedestrians. Fortunately, most bicycle accidents can be prevented by wearing a helmet and following the rules of the road. Always be sure to signal before turning and ride far enough out into the road to avoid obstacles such as storm grates, wet leaves, or railroad tracks. It is also a good idea to keep your eyes and ears open to other traffic and avoid blind corners.