The mission of the Blue Ridge Bicycle Club is “Promoting healthy and fun lifestyles through cycling in Western North Carolina.”
Did you know that the World Health Organization found
that people who are “sufficiently active” reduce the risk
of serious disease as follows:
- Ischemic Heart Disease – 47%
- Stroke – 39%
- Breast Cancer in Women – 34%
- Colon Cancer – 43%
- Type II Diabetes – 39%
Sufficiently active is defined as 150 minutes of moderate exercise
or 60 minutes of strenuous exercise per week.
The BRBC’s ride program is making an impact on everyone’s health who participates. But through other activities, the BRBC is making a much broader impact on community health.
Research indicates that about 50% of our working population lives under 10 miles from work, a distance that is considered bikeable. For those too busy to have a regular recreational riding schedule, commuting by bicycle is an excellent way to enjoy the health benefits of cycling, save money, and reduce the carbon footprint of commuting. The BRBC advocacy committee has been working hard to promote bicycle and transportation plans that provide bike paths and greenways that facilitate safe commuting by bicycle.
A state regional planner said that the cycling infrastructure in Western North Carolina is 20 years behind many other states, so we have a lot of work to do. We are fortunate to have two new businesses, New Belgium and Sierra Nevada, coming to our area that are serious about cycling advocacy and encourage their employees to ride their bikes to work. Perhaps the BRBC has a role in spreading their programs and success in terms of controlling health care cost to other business in the region.
Childhood obesity is a serious problem in the U.S. What physical activity is most likely to appeal to all members of a family? Why cycling, of course. The same greenways that support commuting also provide a very safe place for families to cycle, separated from our busy streets and roads. The BRBC also supports family cycling by conducting bike rodeos for school children in Buncombe County.
We want to expand our cycling infrastructure and education impact in the communities which we serve, but we need more volunteers who want to make a difference in the health of our communities and have fun sharing their passion for cycling with others. If you want to support the Advocacy Committee in these efforts, contact the chair, Claudia Nix, email@example.com.
Watch this section for more health updates in the future.