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MOUNTAIN BIKING TO OUTRUN JOGGING
Mountain biking is fast becoming the number one fitness craze in Australia as people swap trainers for cleated shoes.
As the benefits of fitness, the stigma of being overweight, a fear of diabetes and heart disease becomes more prevalent in the community, people are looking for a low-impact sport and this is where mountain biking comes in.
Medical tests show that it is far easier on the joints and the back than running and burns calories without putting too much stress on your ankles, knees and hips. Riding a bike without too much exercise for an hour can burn around the 700-calorie mark and many riders are finding that once out amongst Australia’s natural vegetation they love the buzz. Pounding the street concrete is no longer an option.
Recently in Newcastle NSW a unique time-trial competition was ran for mountain bike riders of all abilities. Set amongst the beautiful rainforest of Glenrock lagoon the two-kilometer uphill course saw 40 riders compete in this inaugral event.
Chris Aitken, 17, rides for the Waki-Lexus Team and only recently returned from the World Championships in Switzerland – he has already been compared to Cadel Evans. He champions the sport and is the next generation of young riders coming through the Australian ranks.
He said that he really enjoyed the course, finding the final meandering 300-meter climb the toughest. He obviously was not alone as many riders after him crossed the finishing line gasping for breath.
“The overall standard of the trails was excellent and this time trial was no pushover, but I really enjoyed it. The work they have done here is exceptional and it’s a great area to ride,” Aitken said.
On the day various bike manufacturers were available to try out their machines with Canondale, Rocky Mountainand Gianta few of the names. Local shops from Gateshead, Wallsendand Avantiwere also available for advice.
For more information go to cycling gear plus