An e-bike feels as natural to ride as your conventional bike. You stop, start, pedal and free-wheel in precisely the same way. The only difference is the pedal assist provided by the drive unit.
E-bikes will make light work of those pesky hills. They’ll switch off the headwind and take the strain when you feel tired. In traffic, you can accelerate with confidence and set off with control. With an e-bike, you can get to your destination feeling fresh and sweat-free!
Will I ride faster on an e-bike?
One of the main advantages of an e-bike is that you can cycle further and faster than you can on your own. In Europe, the maximum assisted speed is 25 km/hr. Because e-bikes are a little heavier and have the potential to go faster, they are fitted with powerful brakes so you can slow down quickly and with control.
A study in The Journal of Transport and Health tracked the behavior of the same group of riders on a fixed course when they used e-bikes and conventional bikes. They found that although e-bike riders rode faster on average throughout their journey, their speeds on the flat and downhill road segments were the same as conventional bike riders.
It was on the uphills that the faster average speed of e-bike riders was achieved. Where conventional bicycle riders start to struggle against gravity and steep gradient, e-bike riders can power ahead.
One of the most significant outcomes of this research was that riders reported higher levels of enjoyment when riding an e-bike than when riding a conventional bike or walking. E-bikes make you feel strong, they give you the power to ride further and faster than you can on your own. They take the effort out of cycling – but leave all of the fun!
What is easier about riding an e-bike?
Imagine looking at a map and knowing you can ride anywhere! You can be much more adventurous in the routes that you plan. An e-bike can help you overcome the challenges of terrain and even the limitations of your fitness. No more avoiding hills or sticking close to home.
An e-bike can help you feel more confident when riding in traffic. The support of pedal assist means that you can more easily keep up with the traffic flow and accelerate with ease to move into a gap or clear a junction.
Starting from stationary is much easier on an e-bike. With the high torque of an e-bike, you can set off smoothly instead of straining and wobbling away from the lights.
Are e-bikes safer to ride than standard bikes?
You might be wondering if e-bikes are safer than standard bikes. Research shows that there is very little difference in the risk between the two types of bikes. While e-bikes offer greater acceleration and speed than you might be able to manage on your own, you are still 100% in control.
Research conducted by the University of Tennessee in 2015 used GPS data to examine the differences in riding behavior between conventional bike users and e-bike users. It showed that e-bike riders were slightly faster (3 km/hr) in mixed traffic and slower (1.5 km/hr) on shared-use pathways, but that their behavior in obeying traffic rules was exactly the same.
E-bikes and conventional bicycles have the same crash risk. A study from 2018 looked at the likelihood and injury severity of crashes between users of e-bikes and conventional bikes in The Netherlands. Due to the number of people with mobility issues riding e-bikes, dismount injuries were higher. However, when controlling for age and the number of traveled kilometers, all differences between e-bikes and conventional bicycles were erased.
Will I still be getting fitter riding an e-bike?
Yes! Riding an e-bike can make you fitter. It’s an e-bike myth that having a drive unit is cheating. Although the e-bike takes the strain and makes your journey faster, e-bikes are shown to have a moderate to vigorous fitness benefit, especially on the uphills. And because riding an e-bike is fun, convenient and fast, e-bike riders often ride more frequently than those on conventional bikes.
Ready to experience the power of an e-bike and transform your riding experience? Head to your nearest Shimano dealer now!
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