How to start bike commuting and 10 benefits of riding a bike to work

There are so many benefits of riding a bike, from improving your fitness to being kinder to the planet – but did you know that many benefits of riding a traditional bike can also apply to riding electric bikes, too?

Whether you’re on the fence about making the transition from a traditional bike; or you’re simply not in-the-know at all when it comes to e-bikes, it's time to discover the many health, lifestyle and general ways that they could improve your life and commute.

Before you get started, it’s helpful to know about the different types of bikes you can commute on, so you can choose the one that suits you, your commute – and your lifestyle best. Before we talk commuter bikes, you need to ask yourself these questions:

1. How far do you need to go, and how quickly do you need to get there?

2. Will you need to carry your bike, for instance, up stairs?

3. Do you need to carry cargo or passengers with you?

4. Will your route involve rough terrain or off-road paths?

5. Is your route hilly or flat?

6. Will you need to ride in harsher conditions like rain or snow?

7. How comfortable are you with cycling?

8 What is your current fitness level?

Once you’ve answered these questions you can choose from lots of great bike and ebike options.

If you need to cover distance, you either want an ebike with impressive range, or a comfy roadbike with a set up that you can comfortably enjoy a longer commute riding. And, if it’s speed you need, an e-bike will ultimately get you where you need to be faster and with less effort!

It might seem obvious, but if you need to haul your bike up and down stairs at your office – or at home – then weight is important and opting for lightweight bikes and ebikes, like our Voya E+ is vital. On the flip side, weightier bikes like cargo e-bikes are what you want if you’re hauling cargo or passengers, it makes for a secure and powerful ride. If your route is a bit more off piste, then either a montain bike, or one designed with wide, durable tires is a must.

With your bike choice nailed, it’s time to look at all the benefits of riding a bike commuting:

you can choose the one that suits you, your commute – and your lifestyle best

1. It’s a hygienic choice to ride an e-bike

You wouldn’t be the only person out there who’s become hyper aware of hygiene and getting sick since COVID came into our lives a few years ago. Hand sanitiser, face masks and social distancing have all become a part of normal life in a bid to stay germ-free.

If you’re currently a regular on public transport but have been toying with the idea of commuting in a less busy environment, then an electric bike could be just what you need. Not only does it mean you’ll avoid densely populated, confined spaces, but you’ll also be exposed to less germs and bacteria since you’ll be the only person coming into contact with your bike.

2. It’s better for the planet to commute by e-bike

We all know that cycling – when opted for over driving or most modes of public transport – is a far healthier choice not only for the cyclist but also the entire population.

If your commute is just that little bit too far to pedal yourself for the entire journey, then an integrated battery e-bike would be the eco-friendly option that makes the most sense. Along with powering the bike yourself, you’ll get that little boost of power you need to get from A to B thanks to the assist mode; while also drastically reducing your carbon footprint when compared to other road vehicles. Sustainable and speedy – what’s not to love?  Learn more about all environmental benefits of cycling here.

3. Riding an e-bike combines your workout and commute

Just like conventional cycling, pedalling on an electric bike – even on assist mode – will work wonders for your heart and lungs while also giving you a full-body endurance workout.

Unlike electric bikes that use a throttle, pedal-assist bikes still require pedal power from the cyclist – which means that your lower body and core are still doing a lot of the ‘leg’ work (pun intended). Not to mention it’s still an effective way to get your cardio in. You can always adjust the level of power on assist mode to low if you really want to work yourself hard.

4. It’s not as scary as you think!

You’d be forgiven if the thought of zipping around city roads on your humble two wheels amongst cars and trucks was daunting and even unsafe – but if you commute through a modern, built-up area, it’s likely that the infrastructure of your city has improved massively in recent years.

You may not have noticed it, so it’s worth doing research, but cycle-friendly roads and routes are not uncommon along popular commute routes these day and make sharing the roads a lot easier. You’ll be a confident cyclist in no time, especially once you get to know your route.

5. Using an e-bike as your main transportation is super convenient!

If a car is out of the question – whether that’s due to budget or being environmentally conscious – then an e-bike really is the next best thing, and can literally take you door to door, unlike public transport, which usually requires a walk to and from a station or bus stop as part of your commute.

A pedal assist e-bike not only takes you door to door but it also allows you to travel further with less effort than a conventional bike, which is always ideal when your destination is work. The quicker you get there - with as much energy remaining as possible to put into your work day -  the better, right?

6. It’s sweat free

While we’re on the subject of arriving at work ready for the day ahead, no one wants to step into the office covered in sweat and possibly not smelling their best! If shower facilities are available at your workplace, then great – but taking the time out to shower and get dressed for work can significantly eat into your schedule.

Having to allow for this extra time also takes away from the convenience factor, which is why an e-bike could be your new best friend. Many pedal assist e-bikes look pretty much the same as traditional bikes thanks to their slimline integrated battery, but of course require far less effort to get you to work, which means you can arrive ready for that 9am meeting – without needing a shower.

7. Riding an e-bike is good for your mind

We know that cycling can bring many physical fitness benefits, but much overlooked are the benefits it can bring to your mental health. Of course, much of this has to do with movement – we know that moving your body can help to produce endorphins, a chemical that makes you feel good – but getting you out into the great outdoors for your fresh air fix can help to bring clarity to your mind and help you to de-stress too. Learn more about all the health benefits of cycling here.

8. It’ll help you get your daily dose of D

Speaking of the great outdoors, many of us who spend all day cooped up inside an office might find that we’re deficient in vitamin D – which is essential for good mood, a healthy immune system and strong bones.

The main source of vitamin D for humans is the sun (it’s known as the sunshine vitamin for a reason!), so spending part of your day in the saddle soaking up the sun’s rays is an easy and effective way to top up those levels.

9. Getting a good quality e-bike won’t break the bank

While electric bikes do of course vary in price, they are extremely cost effective when compared to either a car or making ongoing payments for public transport.

Investing in a good quality e-bike is important though – a decent build will last you years with minimal need to fork out for repair work if you look after it. Once it’s purchased, that’s your initial investment made, and you’ll be offsetting the cost every day when you hop in the saddle!

10. It can take a load off

If your job requires lugging around a briefcase, portfolio or bag; you’ll know how frustrating the commute can be with any of these items in tow – especially if it’s busy or warm outside.

Since on an electric bike you’ll be going door to door, there won’t be much carrying around of bulky and awkwardly shaped items – you can simply load up your bike and let the assist mode help you on your way. Carrying heavier loads is of course manageable on a tradition bike, too, but the pedal assist electric bike gives you that helping hand you need to complete your commute with ease.

How to upgrade your commute with an e-bike!

There are so many benefits of bike riding, and when you opt for an electric bike in particular, your commute can get a serious upgrade.

Momentum’s new Voya E+ series e-bikes  are so slick that you’ll barely notice it’s not a regular bike! The slimline battery is integrated, which allows it to truly look and feel like a traditional bike; and it’s also incredibly lightweight – handy if you’re having to carry you bike up or down stairs, through corridors or through the office. The control panel which is located on the top tube makes it so easy to switch between power modes, so you’ll get the ride you want from start to finish.

Before you head off on your bike commute, be sure to do these important things so you can enjoy a hassle-free ride.

1. Check your route before you leave
Plot in on a map, and keep landmarks in mind when you’re riding. If you have enough time, try out the route on a quieter non-commuting day when you have more time to take it all in.

2. Leave enough time
Rushing on your bike or e-bike can be really dangerous, especially during busy periods when people aren't always paying attention. For the first week or so, add 20% more time that you *think* you need, so you can enjoy a leisurely, stress-free pace.

3. Refresh your road safety
Simply familiarizing yourself with the rules of the road, and sticking to them, is an easy way to stay on the right side of traffic and keep out of trouble!

4. Be visible
Whatever time of day you’re riding, it’s important to be seen. Choose high vis reflective clothing or vests, bright LED lights and always wear a helmet.

It’s time to enjoy your bike commute!