Promoting Electrically-assisted cycling in people with type 2 Diabetes: Acceptability and feasibiLity

Project Details


Adopting active travel could help people with type 2 diabetes to increase their daily physical activity. Barriers to active travel such as distance and effort could be overcome by using electric bicycles (e-bikes) for journeys. This feasibility study aimed to explore whether e-cycling was acceptable, and could potentially improve the health of people with type 2 diabetes. Twenty people with type 2 diabetes were recruited and provided with an e-bike for 20 weeks. Participants completed a submaximal fitness test at baseline and follow-up to measure predicted maximal aerobic power, and semi-structured interviews were conducted to assess the acceptability of using an e-bike. Participants wore a heart rate monitor and a GPS receiver in the first week of e-bike use to measure their heart-rate during e-cycling. Eighteen participants completed the study, cycling 21km per week. Predicted maximal aerobic power increased by 10.9%. Heart rate during e-bike journeys was 74.7% of maximum, compared with 64.3% of maximum when walking. Participants used the e-bikes for commuting, shopping and recreation, and expressed how the e-bike helped them to overcome barriers to active travel/cycling, such as hills. Fourteen participants purchased an e-bike on study completion. There was evidence that e-cycling was acceptable, could increase fitness and elicits a heart rate that may lead to improvements in cardiometabolic risk factors in this population. E-bikes have potential as a health-improving intervention in people with type 2 diabetes.
Effective start/end date1/04/1531/03/17

Structured keywords

  • SPS Exercise, Nutrition and Health Sciences


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