World Bicycle Day: I love the freedom that cycling gives me, says Aishwarya Rajinikanth | Tamil Movie News - Times of India (2024)

I love the outdoor freedom that


gives me,” says Aishwaryaa Rajinikanth, who shares that cycling makes her feel free and positive. The Lal Salaam director tells us about her tryst with cycling, the benefits that have come with it and if her family is into cycling as well. Excerpts:
How did you get into cycling?
I grew up in Bangalore with my grandparents during my youth.

They used to go for walks in the morning at the Indian Institute of Science, and I had a bicycle that had side wheels. I used to cycle as they walked. That’s my first memory of cycling. I do not remember my very first cycle, but I remember a cycle of mine that had a pink seat and kind of a backrest. Luckily, I was one of the riders who learned without falling too many times. I caught on to it quite fast, and I used to love cycling even at that point. It was my grandfather who taught me how to cycle.
‘I’m sure dad would have cycled earlier, but doesn’t now’

I’m sure my dad would have cycled earlier, because I’ve seen some pictures of him cycling, but not of late. My sister did want to get into it, but did not go on with it. My mother used to cycle to college and back home. She has some lovely memories of cycling in the city. I also made sure my sons learned to cycle at a very young age. All the falling and the bruising were part and parcel of the learning curve.
What tips would you give to those wanting to take up cycling?

Take it slow and don’t push yourself too much because it takes time to get used to the whole grind. Any physical activity or anything to do with fitness should never become a pressure; it needs to be pleasurable; you should love doing it. When you buy a bicycle, go to a good person who knows what kind of bicycle will suit you, because each body type and posture is different. It is important to know what is comfortable for you because you shouldn't end up with injuries.
Do you find cycling to be therapeutic?
I feel free and very light when I finish a ride. At the same time, you cannot get lost in your thoughts and need to be on guard all the time. Cycling is extremely therapeutic, but you should be mindful because you’re on the road. So, you need to be careful for yourself, your fellow riders and the people on the road.
What are a few benefits you have experienced from cycling?
I love the outdoor freedom that cycling gives me, which makes me feel positive. When you ride, you feel free. But I also get conscious. It takes about 15 minutes to get the hang of it. Then, when I’m on the highway, it feels beautiful. I feel very fresh and rejuvenated. It feels like my battery is re charged. When I am riding, I see a major difference in my lung capacity. More than running, being on the EFX or walking 10,000 steps a day, this gives you hand-body-mind coordination. So, by the time you’re done, you don’t feel drained out, but rather full of energy. It’s also nice to see the sky opening up at dawn, and feel the fresh air of the morning. It’s the wholesome, positive mindset that cycling brings that appeals to me.
How often do you cycle and what’s the longest you have cycled?
I cycle pretty often — a minimum of twice a week. I cycle by midweek once and then, maybe on Saturday or Sunday. The longest I’ve cycled is 100 kilometres. I’ve done it about eight to 10 times so far.
According to you, which is the best place for cycling?
Most definitely Europe. Europe is a place where a majority of people take to either walking, cycling, or public transportation, because parking for private transportation is difficult and expensive. Over there, the commute is so much easier and faster. So, anywhere in Europe is beautiful to cycle, as it’s cycle-friendly. There are parking places. The e-cycles are more available and accessible. You can just chain your bike anywhere, walk around, and come back.
‘Pre and post-cycling routines are extremely important’
Your pre-cycling and post-cycling routines make a big difference. So, they are extremely important, especially if you’re doing long distance. I wake up one hour before I start as I don’t like to rush. I do not eat very heavy food before a ride because it doesn’t go well with long distance, but I hydrate a lot. After my ride, I make sure that I have a protein-rich breakfast and do at least 20-25 minutes of stretching to relax my muscles; otherwise, you get sore very quickly.

World Bicycle Day: I love the freedom that cycling gives me, says Aishwarya Rajinikanth | Tamil Movie News - Times of India (2024)
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