‘The world is best experienced at 18 mph’. The psychological wellbeing effects of cycling in the countryside: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis

Article


Glackin, Oliver F. and Beale, J. 2017. ‘The world is best experienced at 18 mph’. The psychological wellbeing effects of cycling in the countryside: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health. 10 (1), pp. 32-46.
AuthorsGlackin, Oliver F. and Beale, J.
Abstract

Green Exercise (GE) refers to physical activity conducted whilst simultaneously engaging the natural environment. A substantial body of literature has now been accumulated that establishes that carrying out exercise in this way has significantly greater psychological wellbeing benefits than the non-GE equivalent. Hitherto, seldom has consideration been given to the individual meanings that doing GE has. This study, therefore, sought to understand the lived experience of the phenomenon amongst a group of serious male recreational road bicyclists aged between mid-30s and early 50s who routinely rode in the countryside. Eleven bicyclists participated in semi-structured interviews. Data were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. This revealed themes of mastery and uncomplicated joys; my place to escape and rejuvenate; and alone but connected. Findings indicate that green-cycling served to enhance the participants’ sense of wellbeing and in doing so helped them cope with the mental challenges associated with their lives. It is suggested that green-cycling merges the essential qualities of natural surroundings – including its aesthetic, feelings of calm and a chance for exploration – with the potential for physical challenge and, facilitated by modern technology, opportunities for prosocial behaviours. It also identifies how green-cycling may influence self-determined behaviours towards exercise regulation, suggesting more satisfying and enduring exercise experiences.

JournalQualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health
Journal citation10 (1), pp. 32-46
ISSN2159-676X
Year2017
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Accepted author manuscript
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/2159676X.2017.1360381
Web address (URL)https://doi.org/10.1080/2159676X.2017.1360381
Publication dates
Print02 Aug 2017
Publication process dates
Deposited24 Aug 2017
Accepted24 Jul 2017
Accepted24 Jul 2017
Copyright information© 2017 Taylor & Francis. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health on 02.08.17, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/2159676X.2017.1360381
LicenseAll rights reserved (under embargo)
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