You want to stay fit and you know that aerobic exercise is a crucial component in an optimum workout schedule. Keeping the heart rate elevated – even mildly – for 15 to 20 minutes a day, pumping oxygen-rich blood into the further capillaries of your hands and feet, is one of the best things you can do for yourself. But you already knew that, too.
You also probably know that running is one of the most efficient cardiovascular (cardio) workouts around – and is uber healthy. D.C. Lee, an assistant professor of kinesiology at Iowa State University, found in a 2014 study that “people who ran as little as 30 to 59 minutes a week—just five to 10 minutes a day—lowered their risk of cardiovascular death by 58% compared to non-runners.”
But you probably also know that the downside of running is that the rhythmic pounding of all your body weight, stride after stride, is brutal on your hips, knees, spine, ankles, and big toes. Joint injury caused by running “usually happen when you push yourself too hard,” according to WebMD.
Brad Leavelle, MSPT, OCS at Viverant, a Minneapolis-based physical therapy and sports-performance firm, advises prevention rather than treatment because:
“Once you have an issue with your joints, it takes a while to rehab back to health, because you have to change your movement patterns and build up the muscles around the affected joint.”
From the Department of an Ounce of Prevention, we have found a new product designed to provide all the health benefits of running – and bicycling! – but without any body weight pressing down on those fragile, synovial joints and the articular cartilage which surrounds them, padding and separating connecting bones.
Billed as “The Ultimate Body Unweighted Running Bicycle,” the GlideCycle is heralding in the “Weightless Running Revolution” – with a clever contraption that uses an overhead brace and seat harness suspended from the front and back.
Once adjusted to the rider – or more properly, the glider – the GlideCycle lets you run or coast on the two-wheeled, pedal-less bike.
A bicycle with no pedals?!? If you have any doubt at all about how cool this really is, check out the company’s video “GlideCycle in the Know”, which begins with this hook:
“Go for a jog and a bike ride at the same time.”
Depending on your current level of fitness, with the GlideCycle, you can run 5 to 30 miles in 5 to 12 minutes. The corporate website is enticing:
“Experience running with the body weight of a child, and the muscle power of an adult!!! You can bring superhuman speed and endurance your workouts.”
You get super-strength, super-speed, and super-endurance – all “without putting any of the stress on your joints.”
The GlideCycle was developed to help rehabilitate people with joint injuries who had given up ever being able to run or bike again. The cleverly constructed physical therapy and fun tool can be used by athletes and amateurs alike. One can be yours for around $1,650.