Is Cycling a Hobby or a Sport?  Depends Who You Ask

Are you wondering if cycling is a hobby or sport?

If so, you’re not alone!

This debate has been going strong for years, mostly due to the increase in popularity when it comes to cycling.

Generally, hobbies can be picked up at any age without requiring a lot of skill or training; sports, however, require commitment to build body structure.

So, is cycling a hobby or a sport?

Well, that depends on who you ask.

There are valid arguments for both sides.

For me, cycling is both a sport and a hobby.

It’s something I do for fun, but it’s also something I take seriously enough to train for and improve.

Hopefully, this blog post will provide helpful insight so you can decide if cycling is a hobby, sport, or both! 

female cyclist - Is cycling a hobby or a sport

What Is the Difference Between a Sport and a Hobby

Wikipedia defines a sport as “any form of physical activity or game, often competitive and organized, that aims to use, maintain or improve physical ability and skills while providing enjoyment to participants and in some cases entertainment to spectators.”

By that definition, it’s easy to see how some people feel that cycling is definitely a sport.  

After all, it requires physical exertion, skill, and even competition.

These people are usually the ones you see racing a mountain bike on rough terrain or flying past you on the road. 

They take their riding seriously and train hard to be the best they can be.

For them, cycling is all about competition and winning.

Wikipedia defines a hobby as “a regular activity done for enjoyment, typically during one’s leisure time”.

So, you could also argue that cycling is – for some people – more of a hobby.

These people are usually the ones out for a leisurely Sunday ride with friends or taking their time exploring new trails.

For them, the main point of cycling is simply to have fun and enjoy the outdoors.

And then there are people like me who fall somewhere in between.

I love riding my bike, but I’m not training for big races.

I don’t care about being the fastest or the strongest; I just enjoy being out on my bike and training hard for fitness.

So, for other riders that fall in between like me, cycling is a hobby and a sport – something that we do to stay fit and healthy and get from point A to point B.

We might not be racing competitively, but we still ride on a regular basis and take our bikes out on the open road whenever we can.

So, what’s the verdict? Is cycling a sport or a hobby?

Well, as you can see, it all depends on your personal goals and commitments. 

Benefits Of Cycling as a Hobby

Cycling has become one of my favorite hobbies over the past few years.

Cycling is not only a good hobby for your body, but it can also be a good thing for your mental health.  

Cycling is a great way to relieve stress and also helps to clear your head.  It can help to increase focus and concentration.  

Which can be a game changer before or after a long workday!

Regular cycling also provides a lot of potential physical benefits like improved coordination and balance, improved blood flow to the brain, better sleep habits, and strengthening of your muscles for better posture.

Unlike running, cycling is a low-impact sport, meaning it won’t cause as much wear and tear on your body.

Personally speaking, that is what brought me back to riding – I wanted a cardio exercise that I could do out in the fresh air since I could no longer run. 

Bicycling was the answer for me since it was easy on my joints.

It’s an incredibly versatile sport – you can enjoy it on your own, with friends, or even in organized events.  It all just depends on your mood!

Plus, no matter what level you’re at, there are always new goals to work towards and challenges to tackle.

Overall, cycling is a great hobby to pick up that offers a range of benefits, from physical health and fitness to emotional well-being.   

Is Cycling an Expensive Hobby?  Equipment Needed to Start Cycling

Starting to cycle for the first time can seem like a daunting task – after all, there is a ton of equipment needed, right?

Luckily, the good news is that you don’t need to spend your life savings on expensive and fancy gear.  With just a few basics, you can get started on your cycling journey.

All you need, obviously, is a bike.  You can borrow one or purchase a used or new bicycle.  Just make sure that it’s the right bike for you and fits your body make-up.  

If the bike doesn’t fit you properly, it can cause unnecessary pain in your back, hips, knees, or other joints. 

This could prevent you from wanting to get out and ride again!  

So, you may want to stop by a bike shop before you start; they will get your bike ready for you to take out on the trails or open roads.  

I would also encourage you to get a bike helmet to keep you safe while riding.  

Just make sure that it fits your specific head shape and size.  One size does not fit all!  

An ill-fitting helmet can be as bad as not wearing a helmet at all.

Protective eyewear and gloves may also make your ride more comfortable.  

I have found padded cycling shorts to be extremely helpful on those long rides!  

But again, these are not necessary to ride.  

cycling and osteoporosis

Consider Different Types of Bicycles – Mountain Bikes, Road Bikes or Hybrid Bike

There are a number of different types of bicycles, each with its own set of benefits and features.

Here are three examples of the different types of bicycles you may want to consider depending on your goals.  

Hopefully, you will find one that piques your interest and makes you want to return for more!  

1.  Road bikes – they are more for the speed devils.  

It offers top speeds and an incredibly aerodynamic design.

I feel that most people who choose to ride road bikes are the ones who feel that cycling is all about the sport.  

They have a need for speed and winning!  

2.  Mountain bikes are great for exploring mountain trails and going off-road cycling.  

It’s the perfect way to explore different terrain and soak in breathtaking views.  

However, it can be a very exhausting activity with lots of hills and ruts.  

So, I have always felt that this type of cycling falls under both categories of hobby and sport!

3.  Hybrid bikes are more my style.  They are great if you want the best of both options – hobby and sport.  

Hybrids are not as fast as road bikes, so they are great for recreational or group rides when you just want to get out for a little wind therapy.  

However, on the days you are looking for some good aerobic exercise to get your heart rate up, you can work up a sweat on them as well.     

Having Fun With Cycling – Tip on How to Make Your Ride More Enjoyable and Memorable

Whether doing a leisurely ride on city streets, mountain biking on rough terrain, or going long distances to train for an event, there are plenty of ways to make your riding experience even more enjoyable and memorable.

Take a few extra minutes while cycling to take pictures – either scenic views or interesting architecture.  Whatever catches your eye!

Stop by your favorite coffee shop or meeting place to catch up with other cyclists.  

This can help to break up your ride, and a few laughs and good conversation can really help make your ride more enjoyable.

It’s also fun to track how far you’ve gone and how long it took for each trip. This can prove to be quite motivating when trying to reach new goals

Speaking of goals, why not set goals for yourself when you ride?  You may want to set a goal to increase your speed or try bigger hills. 

Breaking down barriers is awesome and can make cycling much more enjoyable. 

Just get out there and have some fun on your bike! 


Whether you consider cycling a sport or a hobby is up to you.

There’s no right or wrong answer; it all comes down to your personal preferences and goals.

Personally, I think it can be both, depending on how you approach it.

For some, it is a leisurely pastime, a way to enjoy some outdoor activity and maintain a healthy lifestyle without the competitive edge.  Making it an excellent hobby.

For others, it’s a rigorous sport that involves training, competing, and striving for athletic excellence.

The beauty of cycling is that it’s an activity for people of all ages and all fitness levels.

So, regardless of the category it falls into, cycling offers a range of good health benefits as well as mental benefits.

So, what are your thoughts on cycling?  Do you prefer it as a hobby or a sport?

Share your thoughts.

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