Objective: This study investigated the effect of commuter cycling on cardiorespiratory fitness in men and women. Secondary outcomes included body fat and blood pressure measurements.
Methods: In February 2009, 48 volunteers from the Island of Funen, Denmark were randomly assigned to either "no change in lifestyle" or to "minimum 20 minutes of daily commuter cycling during 8 weeks". Maximal oxygen uptake was assessed directly during a progressive cycle-ergometer-test, sum of skinfolds was used as an estimate of body fat, and blood pressure was measured using a Dinamap monitor. Measurements were obtained at baseline and at the conclusion of the 8-week intervention program.
Results: Six cyclists dropped out. After 8 weeks VO(2)max (mL O(2) min(-1)) and cardiorespiratory fitness (mL O(2) kg(-1) min(-1)) were significantly improved in the cycling group when compared to the control group. Delta change in VO(2)max between groups equaled 206 mL O(2) min(-1) (p=0.005) and delta change in cardiorespiratory fitness equaled 2.6 mL O(2) kg(-1) min(-1) (p=0.003). Body fatness changed more noticeable (p=0.026) in the cyclists (-12.3±7.3 mm) than in the controls (-0.2±7.1 mm).
Conclusions: VO(2)max and cardiorespiratory fitness were significantly improved and body fat reduced as a result of people engaging in 8 weeks of commuter cycling.
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