Another biking benefit: Reduced smoking

A study soon to be published found that pairing physical activity with counseling was more effective at curbing teen smoking than the counseling alone.

The study’s author Kimberly Horn said, “Physical activity, even in small or moderate doses, can greatly increase the odds of quitting.”

The Detroit Free Press reported a similar bicycling benefit in an 1895 article, “Tobacco and Wheels.”

If it is true, as the United State Tobacco Journal says, that the bicycle craze has emancipated half a million slaves of the smoking habit, that fact will go very far to strengthen the public belief that the bicycle is an excellent thing. The estimate of the Journal is that because the wheelmen cannot smoke while wheeling, half a million of them have reduced their consumption of at least two cigars a day… These figures correspond with the actual decrease in the cigar production which it says has amounted to 700,000,000 cigars annually since the bicycle craze set in.

From the cigarmakers’ standpoint this is a gloomy picture; but the rest of the community, especially those who do not indulge in the cigar, and those who, even while they indulge, reprobate the habit, will hear the news with resignation, if not with positive joy.

We agree. The bicycle is an excellent thing — even 116 year later