A woman enjoys a Bicycle ride

5 Ways A Bicycle Will Improve Your New Year’s Resolutions

New Year, New You

2017 has finally arrived but you may already be struggling with those dream resolutions you’ve made. It’s a big ask to suddenly give up carbs or treat your body as a temple and most people don’t really know where to start. Luckily, we have a couple ideas to keep you committed to some of the more common New Year’s Resolutions with the help of a bicycle.

Resolution 1 – Lose Weight

A woman enjoying a bike ride

The cardinal new year’s goal for most people is to lose a bit of weight and to get your body into shape. Gym memberships are frequently purchased around the start of the year and then quickly neglected. Cycling is a easy way to fit a fun form of free exercise into your daily routine. It works all your major muscle groups, improves your stamina and can be as intense you make it. Even just going for one long weekend ride can make a huge impact on your long-term health. Summer is the perfect time of year to starting being out in the sunshine working up a sweat on your bike.

TIP: Already workout? Why not ride to and from your Gym or PT session for a great warm up and cool down benefit, and the most fun way to get to your workout!

Resolution 2 – Spend more time with family and friends

A happy bunch of riders going uphill

Finding quality time to socialise with people can be difficult to fit into a busy schedule. If you’re aiming to make more time for people over the new year, getting a friend out on the bike can be a great way to branch out and spend some quality time riding and adventuring out on some of NSW’s most scenic cycleways. If you’re struggling to find mates who want to cycle, don’t worry! All throughout NSW are Bicycle User Groups (BUGs) filled with eager and active riders of all varieties who ride socially and always welcome new members.

TIP: Being a new rider can be daunting, try some great shared paths and cycle areas away from the roads to help get your friend’s confidence up!

Resolution 3 – Stop wasting time/ procrastinating! Or, build a routine…

A coffee and sandwich with an electric bike

The hardest part of a new year’s resolution is keeping your momentum going for the whole year. We can all struggle to stick with our goals. A great way to stick to cycling is by making it a part of your daily commute to or from work and working it into your everyday activities. Book in a weekly ride with friends or your local BUG so that they can drag you out on your bike and keep you on track for your new year’s goals. Our Push On Rides Calendar lists all the upcoming social rides happening across NSW.

TIP: To far to ride all the way to work? Then try riding just a bit of it and park your bike somewhere safe while you catch Public Transport the rest of the way!

Resolution 4 – Achieve something great – Try signing up for an event

Gear Up Girl riders cross the finish line

Many new year’s resolutions involve setting yourself a goal and then working to achieve it. But along the way, you can often find yourself reframing the goals by pushing back dates or making allowances for yourself. Sign up for an upcoming ride throughout the year so you can set yourself a challenge and give yourself opportunities to succeed. Push yourself to be up front with the riders in lycra, or take it at your own pace with some friends. If you want to get involved, Gear Up Girl is right around the corner and is on pace to be the world’s largest women’s community bike ride. If you think you’ll need a bit more time to get ready, Spring Cycle runs later in the year and offers you the only opportunity to ride on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, traffic free!

TIP: Bicycle NSW members get great discounts to cycling events all year round AND give you the peace of mind with the best worldwide comprehensive bike riders insurance!Join during our BikeSummer campaign to get 2 months membership free!

Resolution 5 – Learn something new, like how to take care of your bike

An animated gif of cleaning a bicycle
So many resolutions are about learning to take better care of yourself mentally, physically, spiritually. But too often bike riders forget the little things, like taking proper care of their equipment. If you’re all about giving yourself some love this year, take a few minutes out of your day to give your bike some love too. Bicycle NSW is affiliated with an amazing group of bike shops that not only distribute the highest quality products but also offer discounted workshops for members on how to maintain your bike. Register today!

TIP: Spending time on learning a new skill and fixing your own bike is great for your mental health and your wallet!

No matter what your New Year’s Resolutions are, Bicycle NSW is here to help get more people riding bikes and create a better environment for cycling. You can join as a member and help us achieve these goals! Join in January or February using code BikeSummer to get 2 months off your joining fee.

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Safer Cycling Study

Over 1500 cyclists have already signed up to contribute information about their riding experiences to the Safer Cycling Study at the University of New South Wales. This study, which is quite unique, will provide important data to help inform policy and planning for safer cycling in NSW.

The study hopes to enrol another 1,000 cyclists from around NSW.

“We are really keen to see that all types of cyclists have the opportunity to contribute data to the study, so that the results of the research reflect the needs and experiences of cyclists in general. We are inviting commuter and recreational cyclists, as well as those who cycle in urban, regional or rural environments,” said Dr Poulos.

Bicycle NSW supports this research and has an active role on the study’s advisory panel.  To participate you must be 18 years of age or older and ride at least once per month.

Click here for more information on joining the Safer Cycling Study.

Review of Bicycle Fatalities & Injuries

Bicycle Fatalities

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Helmet Worn 10 9 4 9 3 9 10
Helmet Not Worn 5 4 2 4 4 3 1

Bicycle Injuries

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Helmet Worn 643 701 750 738 711 770 756
Helmet Not Worn 221 247 239 201 184 197 138

2011 Sydney Cycling Survey Released

The Bureau of Transport Statistics have released the 2011 Sydney Cycling Survey.

The results were very encouraging, with significant increases in the number of people who reported riding a bicycle in the past week, month or year.  In particular, the number of people reporting that they have ridden a bicycle in the past week increased from 11.9% in 2010 to 18% in 2011.

This 50% growth in the number of people who rode in the past week indicates that there are many people who have changed from occasional bicycle users to more regular bicycle users.  This is an excellent result that suggests that we are achieving a real shift in behaviour patterns that will contribute to the realisation of the many Benefits of Cycling.

Click here to download the 2011 Sydney Cycling Survey.

Cycling – Getting Australia Moving

Bauman, A. Rissel, C. Garrard, J. Ker, I. Speidel, R. and Fishman, E. (2008) Cycling: Getting Australia Moving: Barriers, facilitators and interventions to get more Australians physically active through cycling, Cycling Promotion Fund, Melbourne.

In August 2007, the Cycling Promotion Fund was commissioned by the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing to develop a report on bicycle participation by Australian adults.  The Cycling Promotion Fund was specifically asked to investigate the contribution cycling can make to the health of adult Australians, what barriers exist to increasing participation and what can be done to overcome these hurdles.  The Cycling Promotion Fund engaged four notable academics/practitioners from the fields of health, transport and economics to address these questions.

Click here to read the full paper.

 

Serious injury due to land transport accidents, Australia, 2005-06.

Berry, J.G. & Harrison, J.E. 2008, Serious injury due to land transport accidents, Australia, 2005-06: Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Develpment and Local Government, Aust. Institute of Health & Welfare, Commonwealth of Australia, Flinders University, AIHW Injury Research and Statistics Series No. 42.

This report looks at serious injury in Australia due to land transport accidents (including cyclists) in the period 2005-06. Serious injury is defined for this report as an injury which results in the person being admitted to hospital, and subsequently discharged alive either on the same day or after one or more nights stay in a hospital bed (i.e. deaths are excluded).

Click here to read the full paper.

Cycling to work in Sydney: analysis of journey-to-work (2001-2006).

Rissel C, New C, 2008. Cycling to work in Sydney: analysis of journey-to-work Census data from 2001 and 2006.  Health Promotion Service Sydney South West Area Health Service.

Regular cycling has many personal health benefits. In addition, cycling for transport has many environmental and social benefits, including decreased air and noise pollution and less traffic congestion.  The present analyses were conducted to examine whether there have been changes in levels of cycling in Sydney between the 2001 and 2006 Census, extending an earlier analysis of data from the 1996 and 2001 Census

Click here to read the full paper.

Serious injury due to land transport accidents, Australia, 2003-04

Berry, J.G. & Harrison, J.E. 2007, Serious injury due to land transport accidents, Australia, 2003-04: ATSB, Aust. Institute of Health & Welfare, Commonwealth of Australia, Flinders University, AIHW Injury Research and Statistics Series No. 38.

This report looks at serious injury in Australia due to land transport accidents (including cyclists) in the period 2003-04. Serious injury is defined for this report as an injury which results in the person being admitted to hospital, and subsequently discharged alive either on the same day or after one or more nights stay in a hospital bed (i.e. deaths are excluded).

Click here to view the full paper.

Mass community cycling events: Who participates and is their behaviour influenced by participation?

Bowles HR, Rissel C: Mass community cycling events: Who participates and is their behaviour influenced by participation? International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, Volume 3.

Participation in mass physical activity events may be a novel approach for encouraging inactive or low active adults to trial an active behaviour. The public health applicability of this strategy has not been investigated thoroughly. The purpose of this study to was describe participants in a mass cycling event and examine the subsequent effect on cycling behaviour.

Click here to read the full paper.

Deaths of cyclists due to road crashes

2006, Deaths of cyclists due to road crashes: ATSB Road Safety Report, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra

The report gives an overview of the circumstances of road crashes in which cyclists died in the period 1991 to 2005 and provides more detail for 1996 to 2004, the latest period for which detailed data were available.  It examines the incidence of helmet wearing among cyclist deaths, the major factors in fatal crashes involving cyclists and the main crash types. Age and gender distributions, day of week, time of day and speed limit at the crash site are also examined.

Click here to read the full paper.