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Bicycling and lungs:

Urban cyclists are exposed to less accumulated air pollution than bus commuters.
Hertel, O., et al., 2008 - A proper choice of route significantly reduces air pollution exposure—A study on bicycle and bus trips in urban streets, Science of the Total Environment, 389, 58-70

Cycling and walking commuters have significantly lower levels of exposure to harmful pollutants like benzene compared with car commuters and significantly lower levels of pollutant NO2 than bus commuters.
Chertok, M., et al., 2004 - Comparison of air pollution exposure for five commuting modes in Sydney—car, train, bus, bicycle, and walking, Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 15, 63-67

Cyclists are exposed to less pollution than taxi or bus passengers.
Kaur, S., et al., 2006 - Exposure visualisation of ultrafine particle counts in a transport microenvironment, Atmospheric Environment, 40, 386-398

On the same urban route, car drivers were exposed to more airborne pollution than cyclists, despite the cyclists' higher respiration rates.
Rank, J., et al., 2001 - Differences in cyclists and car drivers exposure to air pollution from traffic in the city of Copenhagen, The Science of the Total Environment, 279, 131-36

Kids who ride a school bus inhale up to a million times more vehicle emissions than the average person outside the bus
Marshall, J., and E. Behrentz, 2005 - Vehicle self-pollution intake fraction: Children's exposure to school bus emissions, Environmental Science and Technology, 39, 2559-2563

Despite the fact that cyclists breathe two to three times more air than motorists, motorists breathe about 60% more carbon monoxide and significantly more pollutants than cyclists.
Van Wijnen, V., et al., 1995 - "The exposure of cyclists, car drivers and pedestrians to traffic-related air pollutants," International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, 67, 187-93

30% to 40% of the population in North American cities is exposed to enough traffic-related pollution to negatively affect health.
Health Effects Institute, 2010 - "New HEI report on exposure to traffic finds evidence of health effects in children near major roads, and continuing data gaps"

The benefits of increased physical activity from shifting from driving to bicycling (3 to 14 months gained) outweigh the effects of increased inhaled air pollution (0.8 to 40 days lost) and increased traffic accidents (5 to 9 days lost).
de Hartog, J., et al., 2010 - Do the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risks?, Environmental Health Perspectives, 30 June 2010

Car spoilers tilted high in the air can increase the exhaust reaching the head height of cyclists and pedestrians by as much as 57 percent compared to car spoilers tilted down.
McNabola, A., 2011 - Spoiling air pollution dispersion: A numerical investigation of exhaust plume dispersion from cars with rear spoilers, Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 16, 4, 296-301

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

A study found that separated bike paths have better air quality than traditional bike lanes.
Kendrick, C., et al., 2010 in Maus, J., 2010 - The impact of bicycle characteristics on bicyclists exposure to traffic-related particulate matter, in press, in "Study: Separated bikeways mean better air quality for bikers, walkers," BikePortland.o

When car travel restrictions reduced morning traffic by 23% during the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, ozone concentrations decreased 28% and acute care visits for asthma decreased 41%.
Friedman, M., et al., 2001 - Impact of Changes in Transportation and Commuting Behaviors During the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Air Quality and Childhood Asthma, Journal of the American Medical Association, 285(7):897

When car travel restrictions reduced morning traffic by 23% during the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, ozone concentrations decreased 28% and acute care visits for asthma decreased 41%.
Friedman, M., et al., 2001 - Impact of Changes in Transportation and Commuting Behaviors During the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta on Air Quality and Childhood Asthma, Journal of the American Medical Association, 285(7):897

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

Employees are less likely to cycle to work if their employer provides free car parking, and more likely to cycle to work if their employer provides bike parking and showers.
Mid-Atlantic Universities Transportation Center, 2009 - Trends and Determinants of Cycling in the Washington, D.C., Region


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Bicycling for transportation vs. regular exercise:

Commuter cycling at a relatively low intensity can increase physical performance (external power and oxygen uptake) as much as specific training programs in men and women if repeated at least 3 times a week with a minimal daily distance of 6 km.
Hendriksen, I., et al., 1999 - Effect of commuter cycling on physical performance of male and female employees, Medicine & Science In Sports & Exercise, 32, 504-10

Commuting physical activity, independent of leisure time physical activity, is associated with a healthier level of most of the cardiovascular risk factors (e.g., HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides).
von Huth Smith, L., et al., 2007 - Commuting physical activity is favourably associated with biological risk factors for cardiovascular disease, European Journal of Epidemiology, 22, 771-79

It costs three to four times more to enroll a sedentary adult in a structured exercise program than to teach them how to integrate moderate-intensity physical activity into their life [e.g. bicycling for transportation].
Sevick, M., et al., 2000 - Cost-effectiveness of lifestyle and structured exercise interventions in sedentary adults: Results of project ACTIVE, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 19, 1-8

Leisure time physical activity alone may not be sufficient enough to prevent obesity; additional energy expenditure through activity like active transport is needed.
Bauman, A., et al., 2008 - Leisure-time physical activity alone may not be a sufficient public health approach to prevent obesity—a focus on China, Obesity Reviews, 9, 119-126

In a study of more than 30,000 people, those who bicycled to work were 40% less likely to die during follow-up, regardless of how much physical activity they got outside of commuting.
Andersen, L., et al., 2000 - All-cause mortality associated with physical activity during leisure time, work, sports, and cycling to work, Archives of Internal Medicine, 160, 1621-28

Lifestyle physical activity [like biking for transportation] is as effective as a structured exercise program in improving physical activity, cardiorespiratory fitness, and blood pressure in previously sedentary healthy adults.
Dunn, A., et al., 1999 - Comparison of lifestyle and structured interventions to increase physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness: a randomized trial, JAMA, 281, 327-34

In a study of nearly 75,000 women, those who cycled for transportation were 35% less likely to die during the follow-up period.
Matthews, C., et al., 2007 - Influence of exercise, walking, cycling, and overall nonexercise physical activity on mortality in Chinese women, American Journal of Epidemiology, 165, 1343-50

In a study of 166 regular cyclists in Portland, Oregon, 60% cycled for at least 150 minutes/week (the federally recommended minimum activity level) and nearly all of the bicycling was for utilitarian purposes, not exercise. A disproportionate share of the bicycling occurred on streets with bicycle lanes, separate paths, or bicycle boulevards.
Dill., J., 2009 - Bicycling for Transportation and Health: The Role of Infrastructure, Journal of Public Health Policy, 30, S95–S110

Over time, people who commute by car daily tend to gain more weight than those who do not, even if they are physically active at other times.
Sugiyama, T. et al. 2013 - Commuting by Car: Weight Gain Among Physically Active Adults, Am. J. of Preventative Medicine, Volume 44, Issue 2

Commuters to McGill University in Montreal were more satisfied with their commute if they cycled than if they drove or took transit – even in winter.
Willis, D., Manaugh, K., El-Geneidy, A., 2013 - Uniquely Satisfied: Exploring Cyclists’ Trip Satisfaction, Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, Volume 18

A study of Texas commuters found that those with longer commutes were likely to get less physical exercise, have worse cardiorespiratory fitness and be more overweight than those with shorter commutes.
Hoehner, C. M., et. al. 2012 - Commuting distance, cardiorespiratory fitness, and metabolic risk. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, Volume 42 Issue 6

The average American bikes or walks for an average of 20 minutes for exercise and 14 minutes for other purposes every day.
U.S. Department of Transportation, 2010 - NHTS Brief: Active Travel, December 2010

Over time, people who commute by car daily tend to gain more weight than those who do not, even if they are physically active at other times.
Sugiyama, T. et al. 2013 - Commuting by Car: Weight Gain Among Physically Active Adults, Am. J. of Preventative Medicine, Volume 44, Issue 2

35% of participants in focus groups made up of of African, African American and Hispanic Portland residents said that they did not have a place to store a bicycle where it would not get stolen.
Community Cycling Center, 2012 - Understanding Barriers to Bicycling Project Final Report, July 2012

Commuters to McGill University in Montreal were more satisfied with their commute if they cycled than if they drove or took transit – even in winter.
Willis, D., Manaugh, K., El-Geneidy, A., 2013 - Uniquely Satisfied: Exploring Cyclists’ Trip Satisfaction, Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, Volume 18


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Health benefits of bicycling :

A 30 minute round trip bicycle commute is associated with better mental health in men.
Ohta, M., et al., 2007 - Effect of the physical activities in leisure time and commuting to work on mental health, Journal of Occupational Health, 49, 46-52

Active commuting that incorporates cycling and walking is associated with an overall 11% reduction in cardiovascular risk.
Hamer, M., and Y. Chida, 2007 - Active commuting and cardiovascular risk: A meta-analytic review, Preventive Medicine, 46, 9-13

According to the federal government, biking for transportation can count toward the minimum 150 minutes/week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity recommended for physical health. It is also listed as the safest way to get physical activity.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2008 - 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans

82% of bicycle commuters believe their health has improved since they started bicycle commuting.
Moritz, W., 1997 - Survey of North American bicycle commuters: Design and aggregate results, Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 1578, 91-101

Of the 10 most common causes of death in the US, seven are affected by transportation.
Litman, T., 2003 - Integrating public health objectives in transportation decision-making, The Science of Health Promotion, 18, 103-8

Women who walk or bike 30 minutes a day have a lower risk of breast cancer.
Luoto, R., et al., 2000 - The effect of physical activity on breast cancer risk: A cohort study of 30,548 women, European Journal of Epidemiology, 16, 973-80

30-60 minutes of daily physical activity such as biking to work is associated with low blood pressure in women and low hypertension in both genders.
Hu, G., et al., 2002 - Commuting, leisure-time physical activity, and cardiovascular risk factors in China, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 34, 234-8

Countries with the highest levels of cycling and walking generally have the lowest obesity rates.
Bassett, Jr., et al., 2008 - Walking, cycling, and obesity rates in Europe, North America, and Australia, Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 5, 795-814

Aerobic exercise [like bicycling] can improve self-esteem.
Fox and Corbin, 1999 - in Green Exercise: Complementary roles of nature, exercise and diet in physical and emotional well-being and implications for public health policy, CES Occasional Paper 2003-1, University of Essex

A study of nearly 2,400 adults found that those who biked to work were fitter, leaner, less likely to be obese, and had better triglyceride levels, blood pressure, and insulin levels than those who didn't active commute to work.
Gordon-Larsen, P., et al., 2009 - Active commuting and cardiovascular disease risk, Archives of Internal Medicine, 169, 1216-1223

The risk of fatality while cycling is just once every 32 million kilometers (20 million miles), or over 800 times around the world.
CTC - Safety in numbers: Halving the risks of cycling

An adult cyclist typically has a level of fitness equivalent to someone 10 years younger and a life expectancy two years above the average.
Paffenbarger, R., et al., 1986., and Department for Transport, 2007 - in "Safety in numbers in England," CTC

Cyclists on average live two years longer than non-cyclists and take 15% fewer days off work through illness.
CTC - Safety in numbers: Halving the risks of cycling

The health benefits of cycling outweigh the safety risks by a factor of 20 to one.
Hillman, M., 1992 - in Cavill, N., and Davis, A., 2007, Cycling & Health: What's the evidence, Cycling England

One study found that cycling improves levels of well-being, self-confidence, and tolerance to stress while reducing tiredness, difficulties with sleep and a range of medical symptoms.
Boyd, H., et al., 1998 - in Cavill, N., and Davis, A., 2007, Cycling & Health: What's the evidence, Cycling England

People exercise for longer when they are outside compared to at home, work, or a gym.
Dunton, G., 2009 - "Environmental influences on exercise intensity and duration in a U.S. time use study," Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 41, 1698-1705

After bicycle lanes were installed post-Katrina on a New Orleans, Louisiana street, there was a 57% increase in the number of cyclists. The number of female cyclists increased 133%, and the percentage of cyclists riding in the correct direction increased from 73% to 82%.
Parker, K., et al., 2010 - "If you build it, will they come? The health impact of constructing new bike lanes in New Orleans, Louisiana," Active Living Research Conference 2010 Abstract

In a study of adults with knee osteoarthritis, 80% of patients who started cycling and walking said the exercise helped ease their condition.
Centre for Ageing Research and Development in Ireland, 2010 - Lifestyle changes cut arthritis pain

The benefits of increased physical activity from shifting from driving to bicycling (3 to 14 months gained) outweigh the effects of increased inhaled air pollution (0.8 to 40 days lost) and increased traffic accidents (5 to 9 days lost).
de Hartog, J., et al., 2010 - Do the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risks?, Environmental Health Perspectives, 30 June 2010

Bike commuters report lower stress and greater feelings of freedom, relaxation, and excitement than car commuters.
Appleton, M., 2011 - "Cycle-commuting the secret to a happy life says New Economic Foundation report," Road.cc, 28 February 2011

On average, New York City residents who walk or bike to work get more than an hour of transportation physical activity per day.
New York Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, 2011 - NYC Vital Signs Special Report: Health benefits of active transportation in New York City, 10, 3

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

Commuting by active modes – in particular, by bicycling, walking and transit – correlates with higher levels of “commute well-being” in Portland, Oregon.
Smith, O. 2013 - Commute well-being among bicycle, car and transit commuters in Portland, Oregon (Transportation Research Board Poster Presentation).

Longer commutes are associated with a higher risk of long-term poor mental health for women, particularly women with children, but not for men.
Feng, Z. and Boyle, P. 2013 - Do Long Journeys to Work Have Adverse Effects on Mental Health? Environment and Behavior

A 2012 study found that the greatest percentage of time spent commuting comes from less time spent sleeping. Smaller portions of commute time come from less time spent getting exercise and preparing food.
Christian, T.J. 2012 - Trade-offs between commuting time and health-related activities, Journal of Urban Health, Volume 89, Issue 5

After a bike and pedestrian lane was installed on a South Carolina bridge, 67% of users indicated that their activity levels had increased since the opening of the lane.
McCarthy, D., 2009 - "Wonder’s Way Bike Pedestrian Pathway on the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge: A Successful Model for Facilitating Active Living in Lowcountry South Carolina"

Fifty-four percent of New York City voters say that bike lanes are good "because it's greener and healthier for people to ride their bicycles."
Wolfson, H., 2011 - Memorandum on Bike Lanes, City of New York, Office of the Mayor, 21 March 2011

Commuters to McGill University in Montreal were more satisfied with their commute if they cycled than if they drove or took transit – even in winter.
Willis, D., Manaugh, K., El-Geneidy, A., 2013 - Uniquely Satisfied: Exploring Cyclists’ Trip Satisfaction, Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, Volume 18

A report estimated that Portland, Oregon's regional trail network saves the city approximately $115 million per year in healthcare costs.
Beil, K., 2011 - Physical Activity and the Intertwine: A Public Health Method of Reducing Obesity and Healthcare Costs

The health benefits of Ciclovia events outweigh the costs by a factor of up to 4:1.
Montes, F., et al., 2011 - Do health benefits outweigh the costs of mass recreational programs? An economic analysis of four Ciclovia programs, Journal of Urban Health

Each kilometer cycled in Denmark produces an estimated benefit of 22 cents for all of society; each kilometer driven, meanwhile, costs society about 20 cents. The positive health benefits of all the cycling in Copenhagen are worth an estimated $306 million per year.
Copenhagen City of Cyclists: Bicycle Account 2012

A study of Texas commuters found that those with longer commutes were likely to get less physical exercise, have worse cardiorespiratory fitness and be more overweight than those with shorter commutes.
Hoehner, C. M., et. al. 2012 - Commuting distance, cardiorespiratory fitness, and metabolic risk. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, Volume 42 Issue 6

A recent study of Barcelona’s bike sharing program, Bicing, found that the health benefits of using the system outweigh the risks by a ratio of 77 to one. The study also estimated that Bicing reduces carbon dioxide emissions by more than 9,000 metric tons every year.
Rojas-Rueda, D., et al., 2011 - The health risks and benefits of cycling in urban environments compared with car use: health impact assessment study, BMJ 2011;343:d4521

A San Francisco Bay Area study found that increasing biking and walking from 4 to 24 minutes a day on average would reduce cardiovascular disease and diabetes by 14% and decrease GHGE by 14%.
Maizlish, N. et al 2012 - Health Cobenefits and Transportation-Related Reduction in Greenhouse Gas Emissions in the San Francisco Bay Area

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

Commuting by active modes – in particular, by bicycling, walking and transit – correlates with higher levels of “commute well-being” in Portland, Oregon.
Smith, O. 2013 - Commute well-being among bicycle, car and transit commuters in Portland, Oregon (Transportation Research Board Poster Presentation).

Longer commutes are associated with a higher risk of long-term poor mental health for women, particularly women with children, but not for men.
Feng, Z. and Boyle, P. 2013 - Do Long Journeys to Work Have Adverse Effects on Mental Health? Environment and Behavior

A 2012 study found that the greatest percentage of time spent commuting comes from less time spent sleeping. Smaller portions of commute time come from less time spent getting exercise and preparing food.
Christian, T.J. 2012 - Trade-offs between commuting time and health-related activities, Journal of Urban Health, Volume 89, Issue 5

Over time, people who commute by car daily tend to gain more weight than those who do not, even if they are physically active at other times.
Sugiyama, T. et al. 2013 - Commuting by Car: Weight Gain Among Physically Active Adults, Am. J. of Preventative Medicine, Volume 44, Issue 2

Commuters to McGill University in Montreal were more satisfied with their commute if they cycled than if they drove or took transit – even in winter.
Willis, D., Manaugh, K., El-Geneidy, A., 2013 - Uniquely Satisfied: Exploring Cyclists’ Trip Satisfaction, Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, Volume 18

In a study of parents of overweight or obese children, 76% misclassified their children as either underweight or normal weight.
Parents Remain in Denial About Childhood Obesity, PR Newswire, September 5, 2012

Cycling to school is associated with lower odds of being overweight or obese for adolescents.
Ostergaard, A.G. et al, 2012 - Cycle to school is associated with lower BMI and lower odds of being overweight or obese in a large population-based study of Danish adolescents, Journal of Physical Activity and Health, Volume 9


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How bicycling for transportation helps lose weight:

A one percent decrease in the use of automobiles can decrease obesity by 0.4%.
Samimi, A., et al., 2008 - Effects of transportation and built environment on general health and obesity, Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 14, 67-71

Two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese.
National Center for Health Statistics - 2003-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES)

Bicycle commuting burns an average of 540 calories per hour.
de Geus, B., et al., 2007 - Determining the intensity and energy expenditure during commuter cycling, British Journal of Sports Medicine, 41, 8-12

Less than one third of Americans meet the CDC's requirements for minimal physical activity (30 minutes of moderate physical activity 5 days/week).
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1996 - Physical Activity and Health: A Report of the Surgeon General

Three-quarters of American adults will be overweight or obese by 2015.
Wang, Y., and M. Beydoun, 2007 - The obesity epidemic in the United States—gender, age, socioeconomic, racial/ethnic, and geographic characteristics: A systematic review and meta-regression analysis, Epidemiologic Reviews, 29, 6-28

Men who cycle to work are significantly less likely to be overweight and obese (39.8%) than those who drive to work (60.8%).
Wen, L., and C. Rissel, 2008 - Inverse associations between cycling to work, public transport, and overweight and obesity: Findings from a population-based study in Australia, Preventive Medicine, 46, 29-32

College students who use bicycles as transport accumulate more minutes of daily physical activity than students who use motorized means and are more likely to achieve public health recommendations of minimal physical activity (30 minutes/day).
Sisson, S., and C. Tudor-Locke, 2007 - Comparison of cyclists' and motorists' utilitarian physical activity at an urban university, Preventive Medicine, 46, 77-79

In a study of nearly 9,000 middle-aged men, those who cycled or walked to work were leaner and less likely to gain weight than those who did not cycle or walk to work.
Wagner, A., et al., 2001 - Leisure-time physical activity and regular walking or cycling to work are associated with adiposity and 5 y weight gain in middle-aged men: the PRIME Study, International Journal of Obesity, 25, 940-4

In California, the fattest counties are also where people drive the most.
Lopez-Zetina, J., et al., 2005 - The link between obesity and the built environment. Evidence from an ecological analysis of obesity and vehicle miles of travel in California, Health & Place, 12, 656-664

Each hour per day spent driving corresponds with a 6% increase in the odds of being obese.
Frank, L., et al., 2004 - Obesity relationships with community design, physical activity, and time spent in cars, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 27, 87-96

It takes more than a billion gallons of fuel to drive around the extra weight Americans have gained since 1960.
Jacobson, S., and D. King, 2009 - Measuring the potential for automobile fuel savings in the US: The impact of obesity, Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 14, 6-13

Excess body weight may be responsible for more than 100,000 new cancer diagnoses each year in the U.S.
American Institute for Cancer Research, 2009 - New estimate: excess body fat alone causes over 100,000 cancers in the US each year

Researchers compared the relationship between bicycling and walking travel and obesity in 14 countries, 50 U.S. states, and 47 U.S. cities, and found statistically significant negative relationships at all levels.
Pucher, J., et al., 2010 - Walking and cycling to health: A comparative analysis of city, state, and international data, American Journal of Public Health, published online ahead of print

If current trends continue, nearly half of U.S. adults will be obese by 2020.
Stewart, S., et al., 2009 - Forecasting the effects of obesity and smoking on U.S. life expectancy, The New England Journal of Medicine, 361, 23

A study of Texas commuters found that those with longer commutes were likely to get less physical exercise, have worse cardiorespiratory fitness and be more overweight than those with shorter commutes.
Hoehner, C. M., et. al. 2012 - Commuting distance, cardiorespiratory fitness, and metabolic risk. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, Volume 42 Issue 6

A study of Safe Routes to School programs in four states found that active travel to school increased by 37% after implementation of the programs.
Moudon, A. V.; Stewart, O. 2012 - Moving Forward: Safe Routes to School Progress in Five States, July 2012


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Why bicycling is good for kids:

Adolescents who participate in bicycling, in-line skating, or skateboarding more than four times a week are 48% less likely to be overweight as adults.
Menschik, D., et al., 2008 - Adolescent physical activities as predictors of young adult weight, Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 162, 23-28

Regular exercise reduces depression and improves self-esteem in overweight children.
Petty, K., et al., 2008 - Exercise effects on depressive symptoms and self-worth in overweight children: A randomized controlled trial, Journal of Pediatric Psychology

Youths who regularly bike or walk to leisure-time activities have better low back strength, low back extension, hip flexion, and exension than those who ride a school bus.
Sjolie, A., 2000 - Access to pedestrian roads, daily activities, and physical performance of adolescents, Spine, 25, 1965-72

Fifth-grade students who regularly bike or walk to school accumulate 3% more minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per weekday, or about an additional 24 minutes/day.
Sirard, J., et al., 2005 - Physical activity and active commuting to elementary school, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 37, 2062-9

Children who ride a bike two or more times a week are less likely to be overweight.
Dudas, R., and M. Crocetti, 2008 - Association of bicycling and childhood overweight status, Ambulatory Pediatrics, 8, 392-395

Adolescents who bike or walk to school are 30% more likely to bike or walk to other neighborhood destinations, regardless of age, free-time physical activity, and neighborhood risk.
Dollman, J., and J. Lewis, 2007 - Active transport to school as part of a broader habit of walking and cycling among South Australian youth, Pediatric Exercise Science, 19, 436-43

Youth who bike or walk to school have less excess weight and body fat than those who take a bus, car, or motorcycle
Silva, K., and A. Lopes, 2008 - Excess weight, arterial pressure and physical activity in commuting to school: Correlations, Archives of Brazilian Cardiology, 91, 84-91

Overweight adolescents who participate in bicycling 3 to 4 days per week are 85% more likely to become normal-weight adults.
Menschik, D., et al., 2008 - Adolescent physical activities as predictors of young adult weight, Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 162, 23-28

One in three U.S. public schools are located in air pollution danger zones, within a quarter-mile of a highway.
Appatova, A., et al., 2008 - in Pedroso, M., 2008, Safe Routes to School: Steps to a Greener Future

Adolescents who bike or walk to school watch less TV and are less likely to smoke than their peers who are driven to school. They also get more overall physical activity.
Landsberg, B., et al., 2008 - Associations between active commuting to school, fat mass, and lifestyle factors in adolescents: the Kiel Obesity Prevention Study (KOPS), European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 62, 739-47

Youth who commute to school by motorized transport gain an average of 2-3 pounds per year more than those who actively commute to school.
Tudor-Locke, C., et al., 2003 - Objective physical activity of filipino youth stratified for commuting mode to school, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 35, 465-71

Fourth grade boys who bike or walk to school have lower BMIs and body fat than non-active commuters. Kids who actively commute to school are also more likely to remain at a healthy weight.
Rosenberg, D., et al., 2006 - Active transportation to school over 2 years in relation to weight status and physical activity, Obesity, 14, 1771-6

Adolescents who bike or walk at least 8 km weekly to regular activities are less likely to suffer from lower back pain.
Sjolie, A., 2003 - Active or passive journeys and low back pain in adolescents, European Spine Journal, 12, 581-8

Primary school-aged boys who cycle to school get more overall physical activity than those who are driven to school.
Cooper, A., et al., 2005 - Physical activity levels of children who walk, cycle, or are driven to school, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 29, 179-84

Kids who ride a school bus inhale up to a million times more vehicle emissions than the average person outside the bus
Marshall, J., and E. Behrentz, 2005 - Vehicle self-pollution intake fraction: Children's exposure to school bus emissions, Environmental Science and Technology, 39, 2559-2563

In the New York City school system, elementary and middle school students who placed in the top third of a fitness scale had better math and reading scores than students in the bottom third of the fitness scale. Those who were in the top 5% for fitness scored an average of 36 percentage points higher on state reading and math exams than did the least-fit 5%.
New York City Department of Health, 2009 - in "Study shows obese children perform poorer than fit children in school," Y. Gonan, New York Post, July 14, 2009

70% of obese 10- to 13-year-olds become obese adults.
Whitaker, R., et al., 1997 - in "Diet, Physical Activity, and Sedentary Behaviors as Risk Factors for Overweight in Adolescence," Achives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 2004, 158, 385-390

42% of high schoolers do not participate in any type of organized sports.
Center for Disease Control, 2003 - in "Getting Youth Active: Inactivity among American Youth," Outdoor Industry Foundation

Less than a third of high schoolers attend daily physical education classes. In 9th grade, 39% of students do; by 12th grade, only 18% do.
Center for Disease Control, 2003 - in "Getting Youth Active: Inactivity among American Youth," Outdoor Industry Foundation

Nearly two-thirds of children 9-13 do not participate in any organized physical activity outside of school, and 23% don't engage in any free-time physical activity at all.
Duke, J., et al., 2003 - Physical activity levels among children aged 9-13 years: United States, 2002, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 52, 785-788

In the U.S., 30% of boys and 40% of girls are at risk for being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
Outdoor Foundation - "Getting Youth Active: Inactivity among American Youth"

Regular participation in vigorous physical activity dropped from 69% among 9th graders to 55% of 12th graders.
Center for Disease Control, 2003 - in "Getting Youth Active: Inactivity among American Youth," Outdoor Industry Foundation

For every hour a child sits during the day, they need three minutes longer to fall asleep at night. Short sleep duration is associated with obesity and lower cognitive performance.
Nixon, G.M., et al, 2009 - Falling asleep: the determinants of sleep latency, Archives of Disease in Childhood, published online first July 24, 2009

Almost 1 in 5 American 4-year-olds is obese.
Anderson, S., and R. Whitaker, 2009 - Prevalence of Obesity Among US Preschool Children in Different Racial and Ethnic Groups, Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine, 163, 344-348

In a study of youth soccer players in Davis, California, over three-quarters of players and their parents drive to soccer games, with less than 20% biking, even though the average distance to the games was less than two miles. Soccer players who biked to school and whose parents regularly bicycled were significantly more likely to bike to the games.
Tal, G., and S. Handy, 2008 - Children's biking for non-school purposes: Getting to soccer games in Davis, CA, Transportation Research Record, 2074, 40-45

Children who cycle to school have greater cardiorespiratory fitness that those who are get to school by car, bus, or walking.
Cooper, A. et al., 2006 - Active travel to school and cardiovascular fitness in Danish children and adolescents, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 38, 1724-1731

The average U.S. child eats 165 calories more than they burn per day.
Wang, Y., et al., 2006 - in Adolescent Obesity: Towards Evidence-Based Policy and Environmental Solutions, Story, M., et al., 2009, Journal of Adolescent Health, 45, S1-S5

For every 15-minute increase in daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity a 12-year-old has, they have a 10% reduction in fat mass at age 14.
Riddoch, C., et al., 2009 - "Prospective associations between objective measures of physical activity and fat mass in 12-14 year old children: the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC)," British Med. Journal

Children who begin biking or walking to school at an early age (grade 1) are more likely to stay a healthy weight during their early school years.
Pabayo, R., et al., 2009 - "Sustained Active Transportation is associated with a favorable body mass index trajectory across the early school years: Findings from the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development birth cohort,

The more traffic surrounding a child's home, the more likely they are to be overweight or obese.
Jerrett, M., et al., 2009 - "Automobile traffic around the home and attained body mass index: A longitudinal cohort study of children aged 10-18 years," Preventive Medicine, 50, S50-S58

Girls who walk or bike to school perform better on tests. Longer commutes were associated with higher test scores, regardless of how much exercise students got outside of school.
Martinez-Gomez, D., et al., 2010 - Active commuting to school and positive cognitive performance in adolescents: The AVENA study, Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine

Participation in physical activity is positively related to academic performance in children.
Singh, A., et al., 2012 - Physical activity and performance at school: A systematic review of the literature including a methodological quality assessment, Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 166, 1

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

Young teens who live in neighborhoods where they can safely bike and walk to school and other destinations are significantly less likely to be obese.
Priedt, R., 2010 - "Neighborhood planning could help more kids avoid obesity," HealthDay News, 3 June 2010

Half of Louisiana schoolchildren are obese or overweight.
Burgess, R., 2010 - "Study: 1 in 2 school kids fat," 2theadvocate.com, 23 April 2010

Participation in physical activity is positively related to academic performance in children.
Singh, A., et al., 2012 - Physical activity and performance at school: A systematic review of the literature including a methodological quality assessment, Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 166, 1

Bicycling to school improves children's cardiorespiratory fitness.
Borrestad, L., et. al., 2012 - Experiences from a randomised controlled trial on cycling to school: Does cycling increase cardiorespiratory fitness?, Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 7 March 2012

People who are confident biking as adults are more likely to have biked frequently when they were young than those people who aren’t biking as adults.
Dill, J., and McNeil, N., 2012 - Four Types of Cyclists? Testing a Typology to Better Understand Bicycling Behavior and Potential (Working paper)

Cycling to school is associated with lower odds of being overweight or obese for adolescents.
Ostergaard, A.G. et al, 2012 - Cycle to school is associated with lower BMI and lower odds of being overweight or obese in a large population-based study of Danish adolescents, Journal of Physical Activity and Health, Volume 9


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