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The Benefits of Riding an Electric Bike

Posted by EBC Support on

The benefits of Riding an Electric Bike are abundant.  Electric bikes are one of the most popular forms of transportation these days. They are very trendy and they are revolutionizing the way people get around. They make riding a bicycle up hills as easy as riding on the flat. One of the coolest benefits of riding and electric bike is that they can help you ride farther than you have ever ridden before and go speeds much faster than you would ever go with a normal bicycle.

Benefits of Riding an Electric Bike 

  • Health benefits: While riding a bicycle, you get great cardiovascular exercise that tones your core muscles. Your body also release endorphins which are a chemical in your body that make you feel happy while taking care of your heart.
  • Practical use: Electric bicycles make riding across hilly terrain no different than riding on flat, making commuting to work or school a breeze. You can ride without breaking a sweat, get places faster, and headwinds are much easier to manage. 
  • Economical: Besides the upfront investment, electric bicycle batteries cost pennies to fill up each day. The only cost you'll have with operating an e-bike is the maintenance of the moving parts and electric components every few months depending on usage. You'll get more out of an electric bicycle than a regular bike because you'll use it much more. 
  • Environmentally friendly: By using an electric bike instead of a gas-powered vehicle to get around cuts down on your carbon footprint. By choosing to use electricity more than fossil fuels, you'll be helping to change the world one ride at a time.
  • Safer: Riding an electric bike is much safer than a motorcycle. You can ride on bike paths, sidewalks, and bike lanes, making riding an e-bike just as safe and fun as riding a regular bicycle.

Why An E-bike Could Be Your Next Ride

Watch this great video that explains the benefits of riding an electric bike and even shows a test ride happen on a steep hill in San Francisco, California. 

 

Health Benefits

If you join the Tour de France and equip your bicycle with a small electric bicycle, you would be disqualified because of mechanical doping and is considered cheating. For everyone else however, an electric bicycle could be a good way to make exercise both practical and tolerable, based on a motivational study of bicycle commuting. One major benefits of riding an electric bike is surely exercise.  Exercise is really necessary in our lives as we would have realized by now. People who are active physically have lower chances, compared to sedentary people to have heart disease, cancer, diabetes, depression, stroke, disabilities in old age and premature death. Electric bicycling reduces stress, boosts your immunity, reduces risk of heart disease, lifts your mood, makes you look and feel 10 years younger, helps you lose weight and get fit and move ahead in the crowd as electric bicycles are the future. Compared to a traditional bicycle, you don’t sweat as much because you have the option of turning on the motor. An experiment published at the European Journal of Applied Physiology by researchers at the University of Colorado, Boulder, showed what would happen if they gave a group of out-of-shape men and women zippy electric bicycles and suggested that they begin riding e-bikes to work. It is important to note that the researchers only studied motorized bikes that assist the rider instead of do all the work for them, like a moped. They used electric bicycles that required the rider to pedal in order to get assistance from the motor. What the researchers wanted to know was whether the electric bicycles, even with the added assistance of an electric motor, was capable of giving meaningful exercise for people who had not been exercising much previously. They also wanted to determine whether the bikes were fundamentally safe to use, given that they let even novice riders reach speeds of up to 20 miles per hour or higher. The Boulder city government funded the study partially as part of the assessment of whether to allow electric bicycles on municipal bike paths. Extra funding came from local bicycle shops and Skratch Labs, a sports nutrition company in Boulder.

The researchers first brought the 20 sedentary volunteers into the lab to check the body composition, aerobic fitness, blood pressure, blood sugar control and cholesterol profiles. They then provided every single one of them with an electric bicycle, GPS device, heart rate monitor, instructions on the use of these equipment and asked every volunteer to don the monitors and ride his or her new bicycle to and from work at least 3 times a week for the next month, spending at least around 40 minutes in the saddle during those days. The volunteers were directed to choose whatever speed and effort was comfortable for them. Then the researchers made the novice riders go into Boulder’s roads and bike paths. A month later, the volunteers returned to the lab to repeat the original tests and turn over heart rate as well as GPS data. Everyone had ridden at least the recommended minimum of 40 minutes three times every week and in fact, based on their monitor data, most had ridden more than required, many about 50 percent more. The riders also rode with some intensity. Their heart rates had an average of 75 percent of every person’s maximum, which means that, despite the motor assist, they had been getting a decent amount of workout, which can be compared to jogging or brisk walking. The experiment also revealed, thankfully, that none of the participants had crashed and hurt themselves (or anybody else for that matter). The fact is, the participants rode at an average speed of 12 miles an hour according to James Peterman, the lead researcher. What is most important perhaps is that the riders were fitter and healthier now, with a huge change in aerobic fitness, better blood sugar control and a trend toward less body fat. They also found exercising with electric bikes as fun. Many participants have actually bought electric bicycles since the study ended.  Electric bicycles are least likely to be a solution for someone who is pressed for time or reluctant to exercise. The bikes are seriously expensive and can retail for up to thousands of dollars.

Practical Use     

An electric bicycle also provides practical advantages. Your commute is quicker. You are going to find that your trip door-to-door is shortened in length due to the extra boost from the motor. It is also great for busy urban areas because the extra speed and acceleration mean that you could easily stop and start in traffic and at junctions. Biking helps improve your coordination. This helps you keep your mind sharp which could impact all facets of your life from interaction with energetic, young loved ones to general physical ability. It also mixes exercise with work as you cycle to work. Electric bikes and bike parts are also easy to install, maintain and repair. They are definitely way easier than a car or a motorcycle. There are many DIY kits for electric bicycles and this is the reason why they are also popular with regular people like you and me. It is great for urban areas. The extra speed and acceleration mean that you could easily stop and start in traffic and at junctions. They’re very fun to ride and require less effort. You can also turn the motor on or off which means you can turn it into a semi-motorcycle or make it into a traditional bicycle and have some serious leg workout. You don’t need a driver’s license to drive one so, yes, it is very practical. As you learn to love electric bicycles, you will find yourself spending more time outdoors in the fresh air. Your average commute with an electric bike per day will only cost you around 5-8 cents. Over one month, this would only amount to $1-$2. If you own a car, you can reduce the wear and tear by overuse on the car and extend its lifetime because you would be riding your electric bicycle for short distances instead of using the car. You could also go on a semi-vacation around your neighborhood with an electric bike because it gives you the freedom to go to places such as trails where cars couldn’t go and spend your whole weekend exploring your neighborhood. The experience might be the similar to expensive trips. Errands are also something that you can do with electric bikes like taking your child to school or picking up groceries. There are optional rack bags and bike trailers that can give you the carrying capacity that you need. Based on a study by the National Household Travel Survey in 2009, half of all the trips in the US are less than 3 miles. Biking makes good sense and an electric bike is definitely your modern horse if this is the case. Hills can be a challenge when you are walking or riding a traditional bike but not so with electric bikes as you make slopes seem flat with these vehicles. Parking is a major problem with cars and even motorcycles but with electric bicycles, all you need is a safe and secure lock and you can park it almost anywhere you want. An electric bicycle is definitely a better option than a crash diet when it comes to staying fit. There are simply no limitations to electric bicycles just like traditional cycling. Electric bicycles can withstand the pedaling power of the most powerful cycling athletes and the sky is the limit when it comes to speed as long as you have a helmet and the right safety gear. Electric bikes are simply for everybody both young and old and people from all walks of life regardless of sexual orientation or gender.

Economic

Another advantage of electric bicycles is that they are smart choices economically speaking. Electric bikes don’t require gas so you definitely save money on fuel.  Across the entire EU, e-bikes are saving money and time. They increase productivity and efficiency as well as provide new jobs. A trial project for electric bikes called the PRO E-Bike project gave several public authorities and private companies across Europe with subsidies for the trial of various electric bikes and cargo bikes. The result came out with 4 out of 5 electric bikes tested being continued for usage after the trial period and some companies even purchased more electric bicycles. Four vehicles tested by the Croatian Post resulted in an increase of 180 electric bikes bought for a total of 500,000 euros. The bicycles were used all over the country and every one replaced a conventional gas motor scooter, giving improvement for the environment, the employees and the cities where they were deployed. The 19 electric bikes tested by city staffers in Sweden were all adopted. They were used by employees for their rounds and delivering home care services throughout the year and required the use of something like an electric bike all the time. When 5 other cities learned of the success, they also purchased electric bicycles for use in their administrations. The end result of the pilot test was that twice as many electric bicycles were now used compared to the number that was originally tested. This is very important with the recent energy crisis and the rise of oil prices across the globe. Also, you don’t need to buy a road tax for an electric bicycle. You don’t have to pay for congestion charges and insurance. The batteries are small and you don’t have to pay a lot to charge them.

Let’s take a 3 year period for your electric bicycle so we could do the math and see how much it really costs you to own and use an electric bicycle for a period of 3 years. Let’s say you purchased an electric bicycle for $1,000. Then, of course, you charge your battery and let’s say you ride for 150 miles every week, which is equivalent to 7,800 miles per year and 23,400 miles for 3 years. You will be surprised to know that the electric bike electricity cost is $35.00. That is correct, 35 dollars is the amount on your electric bill for your electric bicycle. How about servicing and repairs? A typical repair service center for electric bicycles charges you $60 for a service plan. You might also have to change your tires, so let’s add another $60 on top of that. This is $120 for parts and servicing. So overall, your 3 year cost for buying and using an electric bicycle is $1,155. This is $7.40 every week, which is of course nothing compared to the expenses that you spend for cars and even motorcycles on account of gas. Does this save you money? You tell me. So, what are you waiting for?

Environment Friendly

With the recent Paris Agreement on global warming, now is the best time to buy an electric bike and would help you lower carbon emissions. Car trips comprise 65% of all travelling, and about 25% of commuters live within 5 miles of their place of work. It is not very surprising that electric bikes would make these numbers more efficient and environment-friendly. Electric bicycles are zero emissions vehicles. A recent study in the US has concluded that electric bicycles are 18 times more energy efficient than an SUV/4x4, 13 times more energy efficient than a saloon car, 6 times more energy efficient than rail and has almost an equal impact to the environment as a traditional bicycle. According to National Geographic, motor vehicles produce more than 30% of carbon dioxide, 80% of carbon monoxide, and 50% of nitrogen oxide emissions every year in the US. Much of the pollution is generated by commuters who make short trips from home to work and back, and shifting to an electric bicycle for these commutes would cut down on a large amount of harmful emissions and fossil fuel usage. The fact is, if every American living within 5 miles of their work were commuting by bicycle at least one day a week, it would be like taking a million cars off the road.

Safety

It is quite a popular notion that male cyclists outnumber female cyclists wherever you go, except maybe in Netherlands, where cycling is so safe that even small children could commute by bicycle. Research suggests that this has a lot to do with safety: many people see cycling as unsafe, and due to this fact, many women do not want to ride a bicycle. An electric bicycle is less dangerous than a regular bicycle in traffic. As soon as you start riding a bicycle, you will experience the quick acceleration and how it can keep you out of danger when you are in heavy traffic. You are also less likely going to be rear ended since motorists have more time to keep you visible. Intersections are the scene of many collisions, and the quick acceleration of electric bicycles can easily get you out of the danger zone faster than other vehicles. The fewer the cars that need to overtake you, the safer you will be. You also have the power to go up hills and you do not have the temptation to go downhill at high speeds in order to get your speed up for the coming climb. This is definitely a very useful feature. Also, cyclists riding electric bicycles have more probability to stop at stop signs and red lights, since they have the power to easily pull off again. The power source on an electric bicycle is often used to power lights and horns so it is definitely safer compared to a traditional bicycle especially at night when the lights keep you visible as well as the road that you are travelling. With enough power, you can have an electric bike light that is 20 times more powerful than an average bike light.

This Is Just The Beginning

In this guide, our goal is to introduce you to electric bikes, explain what they are and how they work, help you understand different types and which one is right for you, provide tips and advice, and answer some common questions. By reading this guide, you will be able to make a more informed purchasing decision and understand these new trendy electric, human-powered, hybrid bicycles. 

Ready to learn about electric bikes? Click here to learn about What is an Electric Bike?


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4 comments

  • The Pfiff trikes look interesting, but specs are shown. Why would I ‘buy it now’
    without knowing wattage, range, weight, speed, etc.? Without adequate info,
    it’s just a pig in a poke.

    Johnpeck on
  • Is this bike to big for a 5’3 women ?

    Mary on
  • Hi, Bob! Thanks for writing us. As long as you have a hard case for your e-bike, you can certainly have it checked when you fly. The checking fee varies by airline and can range up to $100 per flight or more. They determine this based on size and weight. I would recommend checking in the city you are planning to travel to and see if they have rental options first and compare the cost difference to see if bringing your e-bike with you would save you any money.

    Customer Support on
  • I want an ebike that I take with me on my travels, but wonder about shipping practicality and cost. Will airlines ship the bike when I fly from the US west coast to Hawaii? How about shipping from Portland, Or to Burning Man (actually Reno, NV). I just called FedEx and they told me the cost would be over $1,000! Thanks, Bob

    Bob Arcand on

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