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

Research Output

  • 2 Article (Academic Journal)
  • 1 Review article (Academic Journal)

Engagement in e-cycling and the self-management of type 2 diabetes: a qualitative study in primary care

Searle, A., Ranger, E., Zahra, J., Tibbitts, B., Page, A. & Cooper, A., 17 Apr 2019, In : British Journal of General Practice Open. 9 p., bjgpopen18X101638.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 147 Downloads (Pure)
    Open Access
  • 11 Citations (Scopus)
    272 Downloads (Pure)

    The potential of electric bicycles to improve the health of people with type 2 diabetes: a feasibility study

    Cooper, A., Tibbitts, B., England, C., Procter, D., Searle, A., Sebire, S., Ranger, E. & Page, A., 8 May 2018, In : Diabetic Medicine.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
  • 6 Citations (Scopus)
    294 Downloads (Pure)