SCIENTISTS SAY: VIBRATIONS DURING CYCLING CAN BE INJURIOUS TO HEALTH
A group of scientists from The University of the West of England, led by John Parkin, PhD in transport engineering and his colleague Sainte Cluque, E., began research "The impact of vibration on comfort and bodily stress while cycling".
The results were presented at the 46th annual conference 'The Universities' Transport Study Group' in Dublin, Ireland on the 6-8 January in 2014.
The study was prompted when one of the authors started to ride her new bike to work along a new cycle path in London, which caused her an intense and permanent headache. She shared her problem with her colleagues, which then led to a study into how vibrations affect a rider's health.
A survey has shown that health problems during and after cycling are not uncommon. The respondents reported that the most frequent problems were pain in the arms, knees, neck and back. The main causes of this pain are supposedly the position of the rider and the condition of the road.
25% of respondents attributed their discomfort to uneven road surface, 21% believed that the cause was the incorrect position of their body during cycling and 12% blamed cold weather.
In the second part of the study the scientists measured the actual vibration data under various conditions. To take the measurements a bike had been equipped with an accelerometer.
The scientists discovered that the surface condition is the principal factor that affects the vibration value. It turned out that in almost one hour of cycling the rider is exposed to vibration comparable to that of a tractor operator during half a day of field work.