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Health experts cite Louisiana as one of the least healthy states in the nation, due to increased obesity rates among residents. The cure? Becoming more active is the best way to control obesity and improve overall health.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends 150 minutes of moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise each week. Cardiovascular exercise lowers blood pressure, reduces the risk of chronic disease, and helps achieve and maintain ideal weight. In addition, it strengthens the heart and lungs, which reduce cholesterol levels and increase the body's ability to utilize oxygen. Participating in regular physical activity could increase quality of life and longevity.
Riding an exercise bike is an ideal way to engage in cardiovascular exercise. Exercise bikes deliver a low-impact workout, which is gentle on spine, hips, and knees. In addition, cycling will strengthen leg, hip, and buttock muscles, increasing tone and reducing the risk of injury during normal daily activities. These are just a few of the benefits from riding an exercise bike.
The recumbent style bike is recommended for persons who suffer from arthritis, have back problems, or are more than 50 pounds overweight. With this type of bike, the rider sits in a large, chair-like seat in the reclined position. The seat provides lumbar support, and weight is distributed evenly over a larger area. The pedals are located out in front of the rider, and placement of the seat and pedals put little pressure on the back. Many physical therapists recommend the recumbent bike for those who need exercise with minimal stress on the spine.
The upright style bike is more like a traditional bicycle, in that the rider sits upright, with hands out in front and feet straight down on the pedals. Upright style bikes offer various levels of resistance when cycling. Many experienced riders claim the upright bike works the gluteal muscles better than a recumbent bike because the rider can fully extend the hips through the cycle.
Louisiana residents have several options when it comes to choosing the right exercise bike, and by starting out slowly, they can rapidly build endurance and strength.
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