-P. Srinivasan / firstname.lastname@example.org
Be it be school going children, youth, middle-aged or senior citizens, all are into cycling these days. It is the new trend that is catching up.
Shailesh TIwari (53), a businessman in Jaipur says, “To remain fit and healthy, I initially thought of joining gym. I paid the annual fee too, but hardly went there. Then I started jogging, but it started hurting my knees, so I shifted to walking, but it was so boring that I could not continue.”
Few months ago, he thought of cycling and looked at his son’s cycle lying in pitiable condition at the backyard. He got it repaired and started cycling and soon it became interesting and now he has purchased a new cycle. “Now I am cycle for 15-20kms daily and started taking part in cycling events,” he added.
Trilok Kumar Swami (26) founder of Cycloshot Tribe, Jaipur said there are four to five cycling clubs in Pink City and more than 2000 people are into cycling through these clubs. He said Cycloshot Tribe organises five events in a year of which two are grand events organised in September covering 50kms distance and in March/April covering distance of 35kms.
Recently, Lieutenant General Alok Singh Kler (58) cycled from Delhi to Jaipur covering a distance of 270kms to take charge of the army’s South Western Command. He covered the distance is less than 14 hours starting on Saturday evening (August 31) and reaching on Sunday morning (September 1). Lt. Gen Kler said that he is passionate about cycling as it is a terrific workout.
Similarly, during the Lok Sabha elections in April this year, renowned cardiologist of Jaipur Dr GL Sharma on April 29 had went to his village Soda in Tonk-Sawai Madhopur parliamentary constituency on cycle covering a distance of around 80kms to cast his vote. He is also a cycling buff and rides for hours whenever finds time. He said,” People willing to lead a healthy life without any cardiac problem should ride cycle.”
Swami said cycles come in three categories track cycle, road cycle and mountain cycle. Track cycle is for cycling in velodrome, while road cycles are for roads and mountain cycle for off-road on dirt, muddy, gravel ways. The cycles with gear start with a price tag of Rs 15,000 up to Rs 60,000, while professional cycle generally used for racing starts from Rs 1 lakh, he informed.
On the question of are Jaipur roads safe for riding cycle, Swami said that generally cyclists go for cycling at 5-6am and come back by 7-7.30am. At that time there is not much traffic and roads are almost deserted.
In regard to large number people opting for cycling, Swami said, “first and foremost reason is health benefits. It is good for heart, joints and overall fitness and second reason is ‘status symbol’. In the colony or society, when a costly cycle is parked at your house, it increases your status symbol.” As far as difference between the traditional cycles or utility cycles with these cycles is concerned is frame and brakes, he added.
Amit Bhatt (41), a private employee who prefers cycling on holidays and Sundays said, “Walking daily at the same place becomes boring, while riding bicycle each day is a new experience. I go different parts of city and see new places that too, enjoy beautiful remote areas of the city, see sunrise, sunset, enjoy drenching in rains. It also gives an opportunity to meet new cyclists of the city, who join while cycling.”
Swami said that cycling requires PVC lightweight helmet, sunglasses, lightweight gloves, cycling shorts and tees.
According to health experts, cycling is best exercise to keep heart healthy along with it also helps in lowering blood sugar levels, drop cholesterol levels and control blood pressure. Cycling is one of the effective exercises for losing weight, helps in maintaining good mood, tackle stress and depression.