The facts about bicycle is much known to us. But it is remembered for simply cycling or fitness and sometimes in developing countries it is transportation medium for poor people. Bicycle plays an important role to each and every person in the society. Rich people buy bicycle for cycling in the morning or evening to keep them physically fit. Most of us learn bicycle as the first in our early ages of our life. I remember, my parents gifted me a bicycle to go school. In India millions of people keep it as local transport as it is easy to carry and has negligible maintenance cost. But a large portion of Indian population buys it for their bread and butter and the whole family runs by it. In this article you will get to know all the facts about bicycle in India.
HEALTH FACTS ABOUT BICYCLE
1. An aerobic workout with pedals
Cycling provides aerobic workout and it is great for your heart, brain, and blood vessels. Aerobic exercise also releases toxic from your body and thus makes you feel young and healthy
2. Cycling helps to build muscle
When you push pedals in downward, you use the gluteus muscles (buttocks), the quadriceps (thighs) and the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles (calves). In the backward phase, you use the hamstrings in the back of the thighs and the flexor muscles in the front of the hips. Thus cycling helps to build our body muscles.
3. Pushing Pedals builds bone.
Pushing pedals and pull on the muscles increases bone density and make them strong.
All the above three benefits belongs to all human beings irrespective of all class of people. But in addition poor people use this means of transport for earnings. Apart from facts about bicycle in health the latter part of this article will elaborate other unknown facts about bicycle.
HOW DO POOR KIDS LEARN TO RIDE BICYCLE IN INDIA
There are many fashionable bicycles are available at present. The family who are financially strong can afford modern cycle for their kids. These cycles are equipped with two additional wheels on the two sides of the back wheel. Kids can easily learn to balance cycling with these bicycles. But poor people in country like India cannot afford it. Even a person cannot buy separate bicycle for their kids of different sizes. As there is a big bicycle in the family and for a kid it is difficult to learn with its big size. So such family kids use the innovative technique called ‘kaichi cycling’ to enjoy cycling. Thus a bicycle fulfills poor kids dream at their early ages of life in India.
WHY DO POOR PEOPLE OPT BICYCLE
For an individual who earns Rs. 3000 to 5000 in a month, it is very difficult to spend a single penny to avail public transport system. This costs at least Rs. 500 in a month and this does not fulfill his requirements, if he is a seller of goods. Sometimes a poor man needs to divert his route many times. To get rid from such problems Bike may be the solutions but it cost at least Rs. 50000. This is nothing but dream. A simple bicycle costs Rs. 2000 and it will be more easy if someone goes for second hand one. In India it is available by spending Rs. 250 to 500 as per condition of the cycle. A poor easily can spend the amount for his occupation.
There are many advantages of using bicycle apart from health. As we know a large portion of rich and middle class go for cycling to keep them physically fit. But financially poor people opt bicycle because of the following reasons:
- Old bicycle is easily affordable by a poor man
- It has almost zero maintenance cost
- It is easy to ride
- Cycle carrier help to carry goods
- Easy to park
- No driving license is required to ride.
- Vendors can easily enters narrow road in villages
USES OF BICYCLE FOR POOR PEOPLE
In the above section we have seen how a kid learns to ride. So when started earning for his family, the bicycle is the only mean of transport to bear. He uses it to move for work from one place to other or sell his business. Sometimes poor people moves miles and reach nearest city to earn money. 50% of the poor in Indian population walk or use cycle to work because of problems in the public transport system. The present public transport system is costly and has limited routes. The common public transport system has many problems like suitable route, fare, traffic and rush. Every poor cannot bear the fare for to and fro movement. According to urban mobility data from Census 2011, released in 2017, 31 per cent urban poor walks to work, another 18 per cent rely on cycles.
In metropolitan cities, people who travel 3 to 5 km for job spend at least Rs 600 or more a month if they adopt bus facility. The travel cost rises to up to Rs 2,800 if they travel by the metro. This is totally beyond their limit who earns 3000-500 Rs. in a month. In India, the economically poor people of society typically find itself very near to work opportunities. Certain occupations were found to be totally dependent on bicycles.
Bicycle users are categorized in the following pattern in India:
- Home-based service providers (sweeper, stove-cooker repairing, etc.)
- Delivery men (newspaper, courier, etc.)
- Vendors (cloth, cooked food, milkman etc.)
OCCUPATIONS BY BICYCLE
The occupations of the above three types are totally dependent on cycling. There is another class of poorer who use bicycle as a transport system to save money. In this category factory labor, employees of store are fall. A large portion of population depends on service of daily vendors. Vendors keep their goods on the cycle and travel different colonies to sell vegetables, house hold, utensils, baked food, clothes etc. The vendors buy these goods from nearest market of the city and then sell them in the interior villages.
Sometimes poor old person forced to ride by bicycle for living and this really tremendous job for an old person. A large number of independent old persons earn their daily wages by selling goods or foods and thus rides miles. There should have some sympathy for these poor and old people. With the progress of technological advancement we have conquered the Universe but still we have to think to help such class of people. There should be some improvements by putting some automatic transmission system (battery or motor) in the conventional bicycle. There should have some schemes to provide at reasonable price to the people who are hand to mouth.