The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly of Cycling

Cycling can be a great form of cardio, but it isn’t without certain drawbacks.

As a lifelong triathlete, cycling has always been part of my life. Whether I was scooting around the neighborhood in my childhood, or cycling long distances as a form of stress relief, something about being on a bike has always appealed to me.

Personally, I find a sense of accomplishment from traveling far and fast by using the natural capabilities of my body. It is also a great way to get to know a new city, or to rediscover your own city. While cycling is great with friends, it remains a solo sport in that you are still responsible for your own pace and progress. And lastly, you can cycle on bike paths, on the open road, or in a gym, if the weather isn’t great. So my overall opinion of cycling is that it is a great form of cardio with many benefits in terms of physical, mental, and overall health.

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That being said, there are two sides to every coin. So if you’re thinking of adopting cycling as a new form of exercise, here are the pros and cons to help you make an informed decision:


Cycling is a great form of cardiovascular exercise, and can help you fight long term diseases like heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and diabetes.

Cycling is great for your mental health, and can relieve stress, as well as facilitate time for you to think through your problems.

Cycling is a great, eco-friendly way to get around town.

Cycling can be done alone, or in groups, making it the perfect exercise for friends who don’t always want to be held accountable.

Cycling regularly can help you lose weight and keep it off.

Cycling is easier on your joints than other forms of cardio, like running.

Cycling can keep you motivated to accomplish other goals in your life, when approached with regularity.

Cycling can be used to raise money for charity, and thus do some good in the world.

Cycling can be a great family bonding experience.


Cycling on open road can result in car accidents.

If your bicycle isn’t adjusted for your body, it can cause pain.

A poorly fitted bike can cause numbness in your body, that can lead to other health issues down the road.

Cycling too much can cause saddle sores, which make it super painful to sit.

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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