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Active Voice: Electric Bikes as a New Active Transportation Modality to Promote Health

from By Boris Gojanovic, M.D.

Viewpoints presented in SMB commentaries reflect opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM.

Boris Gojanovic, M.D., is a staff physician at the Swiss Olympic Medical Center in the Lausanne University Hospital (CHUV) in Switzerland. In addition to clinical sports medicine and athletic performance, Gojanovic’s research activities focus on new ways to counteract the growing problem of inactivity and low fitness levels. This commentary presents Dr. Gojanovic’s views associated with the research article he and his colleagues published in the Nov. 2011 issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise® (MSSE).

The ever-growing benefits of physical activity for health are often matched by the barriers people face in being active, such as the lack of time, motivation, infrastructure and knowledge. Strategies have been developed to create worksite programs, improve urbanization and green areas, and promote active transportation, both for health and environmental reasons. The latter part faces its own challenges – including increasing distances from living to working sites, roads not adapted for cyclists, insufficient facilities (showers, lockers) at the workplace, and the topography of certain urban environments – which render classical biking too strenuous to be an easy option. more

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