- Published: Tuesday, 06 September 2016 00:00
- Written by Administrator
- Hits: 1141
We have a saying here in the Philippines: only carabaos get old. But then oh, Filipinos do and not all of us do so gracefully. However, there's a new brave world for a senior person when it comes to bicycling. Being a senior person, what can being an active bicyclist do for you? One way in which bicycling can benefit you is having a new circle of biker friends who can motivate you to discover more ways and trails to bike. If that doesn’t motivate you enough, think of other physical benefits you can have!
Did you know that bicycling or any other sensible physical exercise can prevent or delay aging and any other debilitating conditions related to aging. Let’s not forget that bicycling can help improve mental health which in turn can help you conquer dementia, depression and that scourge of the brain, Alzheimer’s disease. Bicycling a few minutes a day or several kilometers a week can definitely boost your metabolism and thus, promote a truly healthy digestive system. Those who are suffering from or may have osteoporosis in their genes can definitely derive some comfort in bicycling knowing that it can help strengthen their bones and thus reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis.
Senior people can benefit from bicycling but before starting, you should talk to your doctor first about it or any form of exercise you are planning to do. Ask your doctor's advice if you have a chronic physical condition that can limit your ability to bike or if that condition can allow you to start bicycling. Once you are already used to bicycling, ask if you should increase or maintain your activity level. Act only upon confirming with your doctor that you can do all the types of activities you are planning to do based on your interests and ability. Remember to start slowly and plan your bicycling so you can gradually increase your intensity and your time pedaling. Pacing yourself, resting when needed and doing alternate physical activity can help build endurance. It is important that you look at bicycling as an important part of your senior lifestyle if you want to continue being healthy.
Some tips to help seniors start bicycling.
- Make sure it is something you like and that bicycling is fun for you. You are more likely to continue bicycling if you see it as a fun activity.
- Make bicycling a convenient activity and that you are doing it without necessarily leaving out other activities that you also enjoy. Being convenient will mean that you will have no excuses for not bicycling.
- Develop a routine that includes bicycling until you get to the point that you MISS it if you don’t go.
- Go find bicycling buddies, if not of the same age as you are or somebody who has enough patience to wait for you or stay behind you on long trips. They will be there to make sure you are not left behind alone. Try new routes so you don’t get bored out of your saddle.
- Be ready to modify your bicycling activities as needed or as your aging body requires. If you need to walk your bike when tired, or just simply rest under the shade of a tree or sit on a park bench, don’t hesitate to do so.
- If you are just beginning to bike again after a long time of bicycling hiatus, learn again how to properly ride a bike so that you can stay safe, avoid injury and get the best benefit out of bicycling.
Ask a Firefly Brigade Advocate
A Firefly Brigade member is not only an avid or an enthusiastic biker. He or she is also, more than anything else, an Advocate – for clean air and sustainable living. As an advocate, they are open to help others develop their own plans on how to help not only themselves in becoming physically healthy, but also how to become a responsible bicyclist who helps promote advocacies for the environment.
If you need assistance, please contact us.
They say you can't teach old dogs new tricks, but old men aren't Bantays that need to be led always by the leash. Therefore, Being a Predictable Bicyclist on the Road should be an easy trick to master even for our senior cyclists learning to navigate our non-existent bike lanes. Happy cycling and keep that smile in spite of everything mad you see on the road!