Cycling can have a positive effect on employee health and well-being. The reason for this is that it constitutes employee movement and exercise. And since cycling is a form of exercise, regular bike and e-bike use can have the following positive impacts on employee health: 1) better physical health, 2) Improving cognitive function; and 3) boosting employee general well-being.
1. Cycling improves physical health
Exercise like cycling has been proven to be really good for health and wellbeing [1,2,3,4]. In fact, a study has shown that exercise reduces the risk of serious diseases like heart disease, diabetes, obesity, etc. – and also limits the severity of such inflictions .
Moreover, and importantly in the context of e-bike use, research has shown that even small increases in exercise levels of normally sedentary people – like testing an e-bike – are associated with lar- ge improvements in health status . This is great news for people that are currently unfit and do not exercise regularly; they can easily gain in health benefits from just a small increase in exercise. So, in short: the e-bike offers a good gateway exercise option to start the process of getting active.
2. Cycling boosts employee cognitive function
The research is clear: regular exercise like cycling affects changes to the brain allowing enhanced cognitive ability . More specifically, this refers to improved memory, faster learning, more agile thinking, longer attention spans and enhanced problem-solving skills . All of these abilities stand to benefit from cycling and the fact that it requires people to spend time outdoors in the fresh air. One study looked at how well-being and cognitive function changed in regular cyclists and e-bike cyclists over an 8-week study and compared this to a non-cycling control group. The result was interesting: the benefits of cycling and e-cycling on cognitive ability were undisputed .
However, the effects on the e-bike group during the 8-week period were slightly larger. An interesting point to this study is that results can be already observed over a relatively short timeframe of 8 weeks.
3. Cycling enhances employee wellbeing
The well-being research is also unmistakable: regular exercise like cycling has been proven to be associated with significant improvements in the well-being components of mood, sense of coherence, fortitude, stress and coping . And well-being is important. It refers to the diverse dimensions of physical vitality, mental alacrity, and social satisfaction – measures that extend beyond the traditional definition of health .
Moreover, since cycling is typically performed outside, research suggests that it may improve mental wellbeing by leading to stress-reduction and the generation of positive emotions .
Benefits of an e-bike fleet to employers
The implications of the research suggest that companies can boost their employee wellbeing and co- gnitive functionality by incentivizing bicycle mobility. The benefits include the following:
01 Less sick days
02 Less time lost in traffic (since e-bikes are faster in an urban context)
03 Fewer car trips and thus less emissions
04 More resilient workforce
05 Better general well-being at the company. And better ove- rall employee wellbeing means higher morale, less stress, and higher job satisfaction.
How Urban Connect can help
Urban Connect’s vision is to enable sustainable commuting to work. The multimodal corporate mobility platform offers e-bike and regular bike fleets as a mobility-as-a-service offering. In other words, companies get an all-inclusive service packaging that includes the E-bikes, their financing, regular maintenance, insurance, an award-winning reservation and vehicle management app, data-driven backend management and a fantastic user experience!
Multiple bluechip companies like Google, Microsoft, Hilti, Roche and many others have already offered their employees access to a smart e-bike fleet. “In one month alone, Hilti users made 829 trips by e-bike, with survey data confirming that 28% of users used the e-bike fleet for a distance previously travelled by car and 35% of users replacing or complementing trips by bus and/or train. This resulted in employees increasing the amount of time that they spent exercising on a considerably while also reducing the total carbon footprint from employee commuting.”
Such an e-bike fleet encourages employees to cycle and exercise more – benefiting their physical health, their cognitive functionality, and their general well-being.
Head of Strategic Projects