MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota has a love affair with bicycling. Travel to every region of the state and you will find old railroad routes that have been converted into paved trails for biking. Explore Minnesota says there are more than 4,000 miles of trails spread across the Land of 10,000 Lakes. A claim made on Wikipedia boasts that Minnesota has more miles of bike trails than any other state.
Biking is applauded by health experts as an easy, low-impact way to burn calories. The actual number of calories burned will depend on a variety of factors including your pace, distance, physical condition, and more. Use one of the many online calculators to figure out exactly how much you are burning. Captain Calculator includes info on the scientific formula used for their calculator.
Use your head and your helmet
The first step in any biking adventure is making sure you have a helmet that fits and that you actually wear it. This applies to both children and adults! The U.S. Department of Transportation says wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of head injury to bicyclists by as much as 85%. A helmet is the single most effective way to prevent head injury resulting from a crash.
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) has a simple guide for ensuring a proper fit. Find it here.
If you’re more of a video-watching type, check out these YouTube links:
Planning your adventure
Not sure where to start your family’s biking adventure? Explore Minnesota has maps for all the bike trails in the state. Simply type in the name of the community you want visit, and it will provide options, including opportunities for people with disabilities.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has A-Z listing of Minnesota State Trails. Their website highlights family-friendly trails.
It’s always good to know the laws related to bicycling in Minnesota. Brush up on your biking rules, regulations, and etiquette with this information from Twin Cities Biking.
Know Your Numbers
This information is provided by Health Fair 11 as part of its Know Your Numbers Campaign. Health Fair 11 is a non-profit organization that operates with media support from KARE 11 TV. Health Fair 11 is currently seeking financial support and sponsorship. To find out how your organization can become an official Health Fair 11 sponsor, email firstname.lastname@example.org .