Is riding an electric bike cheating?
Cheating by definition means to act dishonestly or unfairly in order to gain an advantage, especially in a game or test.
So cheating in cycling would be if a rider in the Tour De France crossed the finish line on a motor cycle. They would be cheating.
As bikes have turned into ebikes and more and more people are riding them, the cycling purists have declared riding an ebikes as cheating.
However, research shows a huge growth in bike riding with the advent of ebikes. Ridership has grown from 55 percent of people riding their regular bike weekly to 93 percent with ebikes riding weekly. Plus 6% of adults who had never ridden a bike in their life are now riding as a result of ebikes. We recently completed a video on the benefits of ebikes for larger people.
More often than not people interested in electric bikes love biking but need or want a boost. Pedal Assist systems encourage the rider to pedal and put in about 50% the effort.
Because these Pedal Assist electric bikes merely augment the rider’s natural ability they are not cheating.
What an electric bike with Pedal Assit allows is a rider to go on longer bike rides then they would normally and ride more often without worrying about fatigue or over exertion. It is true that you get a lower intensity of exercise from an electric bike but it is this low level exercise over a longer period of time which can actually stimulate the metabolism and lead to healthier, happier, more energized riders. Electric bikes are a healthy addition to any lifestyle
Take electric bicycle commuting for example:
If you’re lucky enough to have a shower and changing room at the office then you should be very thankful, and maybe think about commuting on a regular bike. The rest of us have to show up rto work clean. With an electric bike you can commute one way with a full assistance and arrive dry, then after work turn the assistance to low and pedal home for a bit of exercise.
Bicycle commuting is just one example of how an electric bike can actually benefit you rather than cheating you. In fact, for almost every example of how an electric bike supposedly detracts from the joy of biking you can respond with a better reason why it adds to your enjoyment. Electric bikes aren’t cheating, they let you have more fun and encourage you to ride farther and more often.