How do you plan to make the most of your retirement? Buy a yacht, travel the world? Once upon a time, the stereotypical retiree was clad in plaid and hitting the fairways. But now, there's a fast-growing trend that could be the best way to stay active in your later years – cycling.
We're not saying you have to become an Iron Man (or Iron Woman) – but a lot of people are picking up the two-wheeled habit.
Cycling in Australia, by the numbers
Roy Morgan data from 2015 shows that there were 3.71 million Australians who called themselves active cyclists. It's not just a young mans game either, as some 24 per cent of men between 50 and 64 went cycling regularly. While this drops to 13 per cent for people in retirement age, it's a huge growth spurt on 2005 (when only 6 per cent of those 65+ went cycling).
Western Australians and Victorians are the most eager to cycle, while Tasmanians are the least obliged to hop on. Across the board though, cycling participation is on the rise. Maybe it's time for you to start?
Why cycling can be great for enjoying retirement
It's speedy, it has a low impact on your body, and it's fun – cycling is great on a number of fronts. You don't have to break the bank to buy a bicycle, and it's easy to fit into a daily routine. If you live near great shopping centres, cafes or parks then you can easily hop on the bike and enjoy an hour or two of gliding around.
Cycling is also fantastic for your health – you'll improve your:
And of course, you'll tackle the most important ailment of all – boredom!
Costs of cycling
You don't have to be a Tour de France winner.
If you want an activity to fill up your days and help you enjoy retirement, the barriers to entry for cycling are very low. You don't have to be a Tour de France winner – just able to jump on and pedal. Top of the line bikes might cost in excess of thousands, but you can often find second hand or comfort bikes for well under $200.
It can be difficult to find one that works for you, and remember that you don't need a mountain bike or a speed machine. You just want something that helps you relax and have a good time.
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