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Cycling: A healthy sports gaining traction in Pakistan


Cycling (noun): the sport or activity of riding a bicycle.

As Wikipedia sums it up quite nicely ... Cycling, also called bicycling or biking, is the use of bicycles for transport, recreation, exercise or sport. People engaged in cycling are referred to as "cyclists".

Many of us have pleasant childhood memories of riding a bicycle around the neighborhood with friends. If you were fortunate enough to possess such memories, you will be glad to know that as an adult, you can now resume recreational or sportive cycling as a healthy activity in Pakistan. Being a low impact exercise, cycling is one of the best exercises anyone can take up to maintain an active lifestyle.

Cycling in Pakistan is currently happening in five main forms: competitive cycling (races), commuting, recreational cycling, road cycling (typically over long distances) and mountain biking. Cycling groups and clubs have sprouted all over Pakistan engaged in all forms of cycling.

Competitive Cycling

Cycling has long been a part of Pakistan sports scene. Pakistan Cycling Federation is a member of UCI, the global cycling union. Lyari boys in Karachi are famous for riding fast and long on Karachi main roads and highways. Sui Southern, Wapda etc have their cycling teams. Lahore has Pakistan's only open air velodrome (track cycling arena).

Commuting

Bicycle has always been a popular commuting vehicle for a major chunk of our population who cannot afford motorized vehicles and associated recurring expenses. The mighty Sohrab has been the mainstay of the commuting bicycle scene. However several office going people have started commuting to/from work using their favorite type of bicycle.

Road / Endurance Cycling

In the past 5 years or so, recreational / sports cycling has quickly picked up pace in major metropolitan cities (Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad). Enthusiasts gather together on weekends and ride either within the city with family & friends or venture outside city limits to the outskirts challenging themselves to long distance endurance riding or mountain biking adventures.

Mountain Biking

Most of the proper mountain biking is done in/around Islamabad on hilly terrain/trails. Although people are riding mountain bikes all over Pakistan, the true sense of mountain biking is only possible in hilly areas.

In the next blog post, I shall be sharing information about major cycling groups in the country and how anyone can join these groups to enjoy cycling.

Next Post: Major cycling groups in Pakistan

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Major Cycling Groups in Pakistan

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