A recent study showed that riding an e-bike had similar fitness benefits compared to a regular bike, but is there more to the story?

5 thoughts on “Study Shows E-Bikes Have Same Fitness Benefits…Or Does It?

  1. Mike Bronze says:

    I have an ebike and regular MTB. I can tell you that I get just as good of a work out of not better on the E vs MTB.
    It’s all in how you use it if you restrict the assistance you can essentially make your bike feel like a regular bike. This is how I used my ebike. I give it just enough assistance to offset the additional weight of the bike. I will do my normal ride with minimal assistance to get my workout. Then I will turn up the assistance so that I can pin another ride in. Another benefit of an ebike is that you essentially can have two bikes in one. You can ride XC trails but still have the travel and geo to bomb nasty descents. Also, I have a large dirt bike trail system near my home. Dirt bike trails typically are steep up and steep down. The Ebike is perfect for this type of riding. One of my favorite aspects is climbing nasty steep climbs that would be impossible on a regular bike. Even at maximum assistance my heart exploding out of my chest.

    I think ebikes are rad. It’s all about how you use them. And I believe that they can actually make you a better rider by utilizing its capabilities.

  2. David Frame says:

    Micro view…I think that using an E=bike rather than a traditional mtn bike will use less calories and provides less exercise…Macro view…if the E-bike is the only way you can get out to enjoy the out doors and the challenges (exercise, balance, etc) than its better the being a coach potato.

  3. Dannie Childs says:

    Hey James, thanks for bringing the topic up and I like your approach to the subject in general:). I will preface by saying that I don’t have an ebike but plan to get one in about year or so. I also have been riding acoustic mtb’s for 20 years or more and having ridden both I probably would continue to ride both if and when I own both. They are just deferent in the ride feel in general. Really mostly do to weight when going down hill. Enough of that. It should be obvious to most that if you have wattage assist given the same distance and speed you would have different heart rates and calorie burn to follow. Now given that you have assist on an ebike and you hopped off your acoustic and onto an ebike you probably might ride at the same relative effort, albeit faster with assist? But that aside, what I noticed is that you don’t go too deep into heavy muscle fatigue which would allow you to ride more given a finite amount of physical resources. And the fun factor! Let’s face it, you will likely ride more with an ebike and the cumulative differences in fitness may be a wash? And it depends on your goals. All this said, an enbike can be a great training tool. Its hard to do a recovery mtb ride with a standard mtb or avoid going to hard when you don’t want to.
    While this is a fun topic to kick around it really isn’t that important to the sport or recreational value of mountain biking. And as far as the question of whether or not both bikes should share the same trail; of course they should! Any argument against is purely emotional. The bike weight difference in regards to trail damage can be reasoned away with the vast difference in rider weight variation. There is only a 20lb average difference between a standard mtb and an e- mountain bike . That can’t be said about the weight variation in rider weight which far exceeds that amount. And as far as the increased users; bring it on, this will increase trail advocacy and dollars for trails:) Oh and one more lame argument; people bringing up that it might not be safe for newbies to get out there on an ebike and get themselves into trouble? I doubt that is a serious personal concern of many mtbers if they are truthful.

    Anyway: Good times!

    You could be at the forefront if you start to develop a way to use an ebike as a training tool in your programs?

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