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Are you here looking for the pros and cons of mountain biking?
Needless to say, the decision to start mountain bike riding could be one of the best that you would ever take in your life. However, it is not without any downsides.
In this article, I will discuss the reasons why I think you should pursue mountain biking and the disadvantages of mountain biking.
Top 19 Pros of Mountain Biking
1. Active Lifestyle
If you like to stay active the whole day, mountain biking can deliver you just what you want. Gone are the days when mountain bikes were used only on the mountains.
Realizing the benefits that biking offers, people resort to mountain bikes even for commuting to and from their workplaces.
This is a highly appreciable trend as using bicycles for the daily community not only saves you from traffic jams but also provides a significant amount of exercise to your body.
If you have decided to use a mountain bike for varied applications, make sure that you get the most versatile mountain bike available in the market today.
Below are some mountain bikes which are best for the beginner bikers to start with.
2. Strong Muscles
Biking is one of those activities that require a maximum number of muscles in your body to work.
This is highly beneficial to the muscles as they become more flexible, helping you become more active and energetic. With better strength, your body may become more resistant to fatigue and diseases.
Get into mountain biking, and your muscles are going to thank you for all the goodness that it receives from the intensive exercise.
3. Helps In Weight Loss
Is mountain biking suitable for losing weight is a frequently asked question. The fact is, mountain biking is a low-impact sport that can help significantly in losing weight.
According to Bikinguniverse.com, you burn an average of 600 to 800 calories per hour. Compared to several other sports, mountain biking causes lesser injuries and hence is an excellent sport for losing those extra inches.
However, experts recommend following an apt diet along with your workout on the mountain bike for maximum results; you would need to increase your protein intake while eating just what is required for your body.
4. Great For Runners
“Cycling uses different sets of muscles to running, such as more use of your quads, glutes, and core muscles. These muscles complement those used for running, making you a stronger runner. Your efficiency should improve too, which will help you run faster.”Neilson.co.uk
These crossover benefits make mountain biking a favorite sport among runners.
Intensive biking helps in developing muscles that are otherwise underdeveloped. This would help in running faster and delaying fatigue, as it helps in improving your stamina and endurance.
“Can cycling replace running” is a typical question that we come across.
The answer is, mountain biking may not provide all the benefits that running offers; however, it is the best workout to add to one’s running regimen since it does not damage leg muscles as much as running.
5. Helps In Controlling Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, And Diabetes
There are several accounts of people who have resorted to mountain biking, along with their medication, to manage conditions such as diabetes, cholesterol, and blood pressure.
If you suffer from any of these conditions and have a trail near you, then you should have no other reason stopping you, except for your physician’s advice otherwise.
6. Manages Stress
Stress is a devil that can eat up all the happiness of your life, and mountain biking is an angel that can help you get out of it.
The endorphins released while you tackle the challenges and adventures on a mountain bike can help tremendously improve your mood.
Moreover, being involved in a fun activity, which enhances your glow, tones your body, and gives you self-esteem, is excellent to combat stress naturally.
Unlike several other activities, you do not get bored or tend to think much about the worries of your life when you are riding a mountain bike.
The more you get close to mountain biking, you will become a better, positive individual who can emit positive vibes when you are around other people.
In addition to endorphins, serotonin, another important neurotransmitter, also gets released while you engage in biking.
Serotonin plays a significant role in preventing anxiety and depression. It can also help in improving sleep, eating, and digestion.
So if you are wondering what does a lack of serotonin causes, it may lead to depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
7. Improved Metabolism
Did you know that mountain biking can improve your digestion? You heard me right. Mountain biking is capable of enhancing metabolism and thereby improving digestion.
It can also prevent you from lifestyle diseases such as diabetes and blood pressure to a great extent.
All you have to do is, make it a routine to ride your mountain bike every day.
In addition, an increase in metabolism is highly beneficial for weight loss as you burn fat even when your body is resting.
8. Better Immunity
Like other exercises, mountain biking can prove to be highly beneficial in improving immunity.
However, experts recommend not to overdo it if building immunity is your priority.
Instead, a moderate amount of mountain biking, like any other exercise, is recommended to stay fitter and healthier.
Mountain biking may pump freshly oxygenated blood to the entire body, keeping it fit and healthy.
9. Enhances Quality Of Sleep
What is the quality of sleep?
Sleep is an integral part of life that provides several physical, mental, and emotional benefits in nature.
Lack of quality sleep can trigger anger, dull your appearance, and may deteriorate your health.
Mountain biking, as a routine activity, may help significantly in improving the quality of your sleep.
10. Better Cognition
Mountain biking can improve your brain function as much as it builds muscles.
With increased blood flow, your brain receives more oxygen and nutrients, improving its performance.
Interestingly, it also boosts the production of brain cells.
11. Matchless Fun On Trails
Mountain biking is a form of exercise that provides ample opportunities for fun.
Like many other forms of exercise, you hardly feel bored riding a mountain bike as you experience something new every day as you ride your bike.
You can choose different times, companions, trails and enjoy your favorite scenes as you ride a mountain bike.
The moment you start pedaling, you will feel the happy hormones kicking in.
12. Stronger Heart And Lungs
The effect of mountain biking on heart health is one of the reasons why the sport has gained so much popularity in recent years.
Mountain biking also helps tremendously improve lung capacity, as the lungs are inspired to pump harder to pump more oxygen into the bloodstream. This will help you perform better and ride further.
Compared to walking, many experts believe that biking can have a more positive impact on your heart and lungs.
13. Better Appetite
Because mountain biking burns extra calories, you can very well have more food without worrying about gaining weight.
Mountain biking can increase your appetite, which means you can incorporate more healthy food into your diet.
However, it does not give you the green signal to add up your intake of foods detrimental to your weight loss objective.
14. It Helps Develop Better Posture
Having a good posture is not as simple as it may sound. A lousy posture not just hampers the appearance of a person.
Still, it can have a long-term impact on a person’s health, such as poor blood circulation, impaired functioning of the lungs, constipation, heartburn, and incontinence (leaking of urine while laughing or coughing).
Mountain biking can drastically improve your posture.
15. Better Coordination And Balance
One of the significant pros of mountain biking is its technically demanding nature which requires your brain to work well to coordinate with the body to ride through tricky terrains and technical trails.
The more you practice hands-feet-eyes coordination, the better balance you will achieve.
This balance and coordination would be beneficial in becoming a better biker and staying youthful and productive.
16. Improves Concentration
The several benefits that mountain biking offers to your body, brain, and mind can help improve your concentration.
So, if you have trouble focusing on work, studies, or other day-to-day matters, this advantage of mountain biking should be a good enough reason for you to try the most popular sport.
17. Joint-Friendly Activity
Unlike several other activities, mountain biking is a low-impact exercise that does not put a strain on your joints.
This is basically due to the sitting posture in which the action is done, wherein there is minimal pressure on the joints, reducing the chance of injuring them.
18. Skill Development
Mountain biking is vastly different from regular cycling, and cycling skills alone will not make you a great mountain biker.
Hence, it offers you the opportunity to acquire new skills and put your brain and body to work.
With better skill development, you will have more confidence on the trails, giving you manifold benefits from the activity.
19. Better Relation With Nature
Mountain biking is an activity that allows you to soak up the nuances of nature.
As you progress in mountain biking, you start understanding nature, which helps form better perspectives in life.
Mountain biking thus cannot be limited to sports activity or exercise, as it also has a deep spiritual facet.
Top 6 Cons Of Mountain Biking
1. The Need To Allocate Time
Mountain biking is not an activity that can be completed in an instant, and hence you must find ample time to dedicate solely to mountain biking.
This may require you to reconsider your priorities, make changes in your routines, sleep early, wake up early, and the likes.
If you are not so great at managing time efficiently, you may also want to master that art once you have decided to ride your mountain bike regularly.
2. The Risk Of Crashing
Crashing is part and parcel of mountain biking. However, the pain that it causes can be unbearable to some.
Whether you ride slow or fast, sometimes you may have to succumb to crashes.
You must be mentally ready to accept this reality before you set out on mountain riding.
3. Practice For Perfection
To experience the best mountain biking, you must learn different techniques, master jumps, riding on bumps, etc., to be able to set on adventures and have more fun riding on the trails.
Every trail is different, and it is essential to practice well to tame them like a pro.
4. Costly Endeavor
Mountain biking requires an investment that may not be affordable to all.
However, it is a sport worth every penny you invest in. You may have to start saving today if money has been your stumbling block.
5. Mechanical Challenges
It’s pretty standard for mountain bike riders to find themselves dealing with unprecedented mechanical problems.
Unfortunately, even the best bikes in the market may leave you baffled in the middle of a trail with a broken gear cable.
The only way to save your time and your life from fellow riders is to learn the mechanics that would help you get out of uncalled-for circumstances.
6. Finding The Right Mates
You may have seen the mountain bikers riding on trails in a gang, challenging, helping, and sometimes even making fun of each other.
Being part of a gang is an exciting experience, but you may have to observe patience until you find the proper club to fit into.
However, you will have to find your space and time for some solo rides, too, as that helps you explore yourself better as a rider.
These pros and cons of mountain biking will help you decide whether this sport is apt for you.
While the pros overweight the cons, it is always recommended to keep yourself informed about all the aspects of mountain biking.
P.S. You may also want to check out how to start mountain biking the right way.