On the morning of 28th September, around 200 cyclists gathered in the RTO Ground, Patia, and cycled for 6 kms through the quiet roads of morning-Bhubaneswar to reach the Janta Maidan ground. The Cyclothon was flagged off by District Collector, Shri Niranjan Sahu at morning 6:45 and it concluded at 9:00 am.
It’s been a while since I was on a bicycle so I just made my mind to participate this time; I was issued a bicycle after submitting my identity proof. There were people from all parts of Bhubaneswar and of different age groups. You could find children, working adults, and even surgeons from AMRI Hospital. Mr. Jitu Satpathy, an Ex-Ranji cricket player along with other chief personalities and hardcore cyclists participated in the event.
This was one of the recent awareness events in the city, organized by AMRI Hospital Bhubaneswar on a day prior to the World Heart Day, which is celebrated globally on September 29th.
“World Heart Day on 29th September is the World Heart Federation’s biggest platform for raising awareness about cardiovascular disease (CVD). This World Heart Day, we want everyone to understand what they can do to fuel their hearts and power their lives. Your heart is at the heart of your health. And it’s easy to give it the care it deserves”, says Ansuman Pattnayak, the spokesperson of AMRI Hospital.
Cycling naturally improves control of blood pressure, lowers increasing heart rate. A high resting heart rate has been linked to increased death from cardiovascular disease and increased risk of sudden death after a heart attack in healthy individuals. Regular cycling halves the chance of suffering from heart disease. Cycling also reduces the risk of stroke and coronary heart disease.
Saptrishi, a young cycling enthusiast says, “I think cycling is the best form of relaxed exercise. It provides greater muscle strength. Cycling is a non-weight bearing activity and regular cycling leads to improved muscle strength and improved mobility and coordination.” He also added, “The early morning sight of calmness spread all around, and the silence in the air gives me a good start every day.”
There were volunteers handing out water bottles along the road track. The adventure and buzz from coasting down hills and being outdoors cycling, are one of the many reasons to continue to cycle regularly, compared to other physical activities; mostly being indoors or requiring special skills, or places.
AMRI Hospital took this opportunity to launch “Free Cardiac Screening Package”. It was one of the biggest and exclusive endeavors by AMRI that apart from showing the enthusiasts how to get a healthy heart, also highlighted the importance of it. Cycling happens to be a major mode of transport in few countries across the world, and few cities in India are also catching up with it. I’m just glad that I happened to be a part of one such effort.
Story Courtesy: Manish Sehgal
Photo Courtesy: Ansuman Pattanayak