Washington: Physical activity improves mental health, yet activity levels are dropping. This is especially concerning because teenagers’ mental health continues to deteriorate. In the United States, one out of every six school-age children has a mental condition.
Riding bikes is a potential way to promote physical activity to school-aged youngsters. Researchers in the United States have now looked into how teenagers’ psychological well-being changes after taking part in a school-based cycling programme.
"Participation in a school cycling education program during the Covid-19 pandemic was associated with improved psychosocial well-being amongst middle schoolers in the US," said Dr Esther Walker, research director at the non-profit organization Outride.
"While we saw promising increases in some student subgroups, certain groups had higher levels of self-reported mental well-being both before and after participating in the program."
"It was really encouraging to see such a positive student response to a cycling-specific physical education program," said Fletcher Dementyev, a research assistant at Loma Linda University and first author of the study published in Frontiers in Sports and Active Living.
"This motivates us, and hopefully others, to continue investigating and developing cycling as a pathway to improved health and well-being in adolescents."
Outside is a not-for-profit organization partnering with schools to provide cycling programmes. "The Riding for Focus (R4F) programme aims to equip students with basic cycling knowledge and experience, so that they may ride safely and confidently," Walker explained."A bicycle can be used for leisure activities, competition, and transportation. Thus, not only are students participating in an activity that improves their […]