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Riding Motorcycles Improves Mental & Physical Health (study results)

Discussion in 'Research, Studies, and Data' started by Nightowl, Dec 21, 2010.

  1. The second stage of a research project into the relationship between motorcycle riding and brain stimulation conducted jointly by Tohoku University and Yamaha is due to wrap up this month, December 2010.

    Source: http://www.japancorp.net/article.asp?Art_ID=22107

    Findings of the first stage of this project released in Mar 2009 found that:

    - riding a motorcycle activates prefrontal areas of the brain;
    - differences in brain use and level of brain stimulation can be observed in motorcyclists who ride regularly and in motorcyclists who have not ridden for extended periods;
    - Incorporating motorcycle riding into daily life improves various cognitive functions and has positive effects on mental and emotional health such as stress reduction.

    The area activated covers memory, information processing and concentration functions.

    Past research data has indicated the prefrontal area does not work as much when driving an automobile.

    Source: http://www.japantoday.com/category/...-riding-motorcycles-useful-for-brain-training

    Source: http://thecurrentaffairs.com/riding-motorcycles-can-keep-you-young-study.html

    Source: http://www.idac.tohoku.ac.jp/dep/sairc/research.html

    In a separate study - results released earlier this year - it has been found that dirt bike riding improves quality of life.

    The news gets better; the second publication in this series of four reports has confirmed that 96.6% of ORV riders consider themselves to be both positive, optimistic thinkers, are “expected to have lower levels of stress and depression…and a higher overall life satisfaction”.

    Source: http://www.oftr.ca/articles.php?id=4426

    This study is by Burr, Jamie Francis Burr, Ph.D., YORK UNIVERSITY , 2010

    Source: http://gradworks.umi.com/NR/64/NR64874.html

    By comparison there is objective evidence that commuting by car and train increases stress.

    Commuting by car or train elevates blood pressure, adrenaline, cortisol (neuroendocrine processes that are key players in the fight/flight response) – known stress markers directly implicated in development of cardiovascular disease and suppressed immune function.

    Cortisol is a well-known mechanism linking environmental exposure to stressors to physical morbidity.

    This study was the first time the adverse impact of commuting conditions on work settings was documented.

    It also re-confirmed & showed:
    - Commuting by car & train elevates stress
    - carpool passengers experience greater stress than carpool drivers;
    - Carpooling was more stressful than solo driving;
    - Higher traffic congestion directly relates to less control, less control has a relationship to greater stress.
    - Different levels of stress between men & women.

    Source: http://www.utrc2.org/research/assets/74/commuterstress2-report1.pdf

    Do you know of any other research studies conducted into the health benefits of riding a motorcycle?


    • Like Like x 4
  2. ... Motorbikes are good for you!!..... :woot:
  3. I never needed a study to prove that to me!
  4. They say you never see motorcycles parked outside Mental Health Offices, and that is very true (unless they ride themselves, that is)
  5. I doubt any rider does. But formally, scientifically documenting what riders already know intuitively is encouraging & may be helpful in offsetting/countering the negative spin.
  6. I know a few wives that do.
  7. Also note the added benefit of commuting by bike.
  8. I know a few people who need to get out on their bike more, and I include myself in that.
  9. +1 - me too.
  10. No surprises here but nice to have some research to back it up!

    I have defintiely reaped the benefits since I started riding, e.g. more relaxed and content, more focused at work, and much better at "switching off" from work.

  11. Outstanding work nightowl. I want to marry you and shower you in kisses
  12. I got an email from a bloke who's started working on an oil rig which said his bikes fix erectile dysfunction, if that counts. If anyone is interested in an almost-new 2012 R1 for $5000, I'd be happy to forward the email.
  13. Interesting read, thanks for that. I know for myself that my weekly long ride feels vital to my mental and spiritual well-being. It combines into one the qualities of alone-time, meditative / reflective time, imaginative play and actual adventure, fresh air...and more besides - but I am feeling the lack of these things when I start to itch for another ride.
  14. +10, well said sir.

    For me every second in the saddle is a joy, but I still don't get those feelings mattb is talking about on my daily commute - when I start "playing" in the traffic it's a good sign I need to hit the twisties...
  15. I as well have been alot less stressed since i started riding everyday
  16. Nice work Nightowl... Thanks for posting. I'll be forwarding this onto a few haters :D
  17. Great result
    I have to wonder, though, if it has more to do with the basic personality traits
    of the people who take up motorcycle riding in the first place.
    Still nice to have it official.
  18. Interesting idea...

    What are the basic personality traits of a motorcyclist?

    - Willingness to be different? (Independent)
    - Risk taker?
    - Adrenaline Junky?

    That is something i'd like to know... I'm not very good at this psychology thing :D
  19. Piffle, Hawk. I sure as hell don't have the stereotypical bike (or even scooter, shaddup) traits and Kawashima's still totally right~
  20. Settle down, hunnybun.

    I only said "I wonder" not "It is".