I pilfered this off of a Facebook post of one of our friendly blog readers. Thank you kind sir!
Second. I saw this article in my local paper yesterday. If you aren't clicking the link, the title is:
"Little electric motors put the fun back in cycling"
Say what?! I thought the whole fun of a bike was the exhilaration you get from self made power. The wind in your face. The energy output. The speed. Am I the only one?
Then I stopped myself and thought, I should probably read this article. So I did. Initially I thought the title must have come from the reporter, but as I read, I see the idea was gleaned from the shop owner being interviewed.
He does raise some interesting points - some people use these bikes as commuters so they can stay fresh (i.e. not sweaty) going one way, then get a work-out on the way home, or vice versa. This makes sense. And I would say that I am for anything that reduces an individuals carbon footprint. Additionally, if an electric bike encourages someone who would not normally ride to get on a bike and pedal, at least some of the time, then cool.
But. I can't help but to be bothered when I read that most of these bikes are being sold to kids....because they're more "fun"? Really? With childhood obesity being an epidemic in this country should our kids really be rolling around on electric bikes now?
The shop owner says "how many kids buy bikes for exercise?", OK, probably none. But I don't think it's the exercise that makes the bike not fun. When you're a kid, riding a bike is fun. Period. Exercise is an added bonus.
Now, please don't put me down as a hater of electric bikes. And, I should note that I'm having a bit of an internal struggle with this post because I am a supporter of cycling in all forms, as well as small businesses. This commentary is in no way an attempt to put the shop or electric bikes in general in a negative light. This post is purely an attempt to question my own perspective and start a discussion.
That said, it's the message of the article that's bothering me.......that riding a non-electric bike is not fun because you might have to put some energy into it. Am I off? What do you think?