Over the past decade, mountain biking has remained a popular outdoor recreational activity for many Australians. Mountain Bike Australia, a well-known organisation of mountain bikers, communicate with over 70,000 individual members on a regular basis.
For many people, riding bicycles in the mountains is a divine experience. There is nothing comparable to the joy of zipping through the forest on a single track trail and the exhilaration of bouncing down a rocky trail on the side of a cliff. There’s also the excitement of flying off manicured jumps and the hours of solitude, pedalling alone in a forest and testing your endurance.
The freedom that comes from mountain biking is hard to match and the diversity of emotions even harder. If you’re not convinced that mountain biking is one of the best outdoor activities, here are three reasons that might change your mind.
It’s a fun physical workout
When was the last time you heard someone say, ‘I spent two hours on the treadmill and I had such a blast!’ Probably never. One of the major reasons people give up on their exercise routines is because they’re not having fun and they don’t feel challenged. After an hour on a stationary bike at the gym, you might have shed a bucket of sweat but that’s about it.
Mountain biking takes a high degree of physical and mental stamina, whether you’re just enjoying it with your friends or competing with long-time enthusiasts who already sport safety clothing from several suppliers. There are always hills to climb, drops to conquer and sweet speedy descents to enjoy. Plus, you’ll be rewarded with beautiful scenic views after you power through a killer climb and reach the summit.
Those who are passionate about mountain biking have a positive and effective outlet to turn to when they need to blow off some steam or when they simply want to meditate. Once they escape the city and get closer to nature, they find themselves fully living in the moment. Surrounded by trees, rocks and fresh air, their stress melts away and they forget about their problems. That’s the beauty of the ride.
Studies also show that a 20-minute dose of fresh air promotes rejuvenation and a sense of vitality that’s equal to the amount provided by a cup of coffee, minus the jitters. If that’s what 20 minutes can do, imagine what a two-hour bike ride will do for your well-being.
It will teach you to persevere
As a beginner, you are going to fall off your bike — it comes with the sport. Although most of your injuries will be minor, you may feel defeated when you compare yourself to other riders who are stronger and faster. However, once you recognise your weaknesses, you can work on your skills to become a better rider. Yes, you will crash but the sport will teach you to get back up and power through until you reach the summit.
For seasoned riders, mountain biking isn’t just a sport – it’s a way of life. With every ride, their love and passion for the activity only grow stronger because of its positive effects on their physical, mental and emotional well-being. Who can blame them? Nothing can compare to the feeling of making it up a gruelling climb, balancing your way across rocky paths and speeding down an exhilarating descent.