When personal trainer, Ben Cobbett first picked up a Micro Scooter he thought it was a nifty way to nip abound town, but soon realised it might offer more - much more.
Meanwhile a pilot study at the University of Brighton uncovered the great potential of scooting for kickstarting an active lifestyle. It found a fit person scooting for 30 mins at 4.6mph would have an average heart rate of 115-120bpm and burn about 150 cals - or one chocolate creme egg - not that we’d recommend one of those for brekkie!
So how can you combine the fun of scooting to get around, with super-charging an active lifestyle? Fitness-guru Ben has some surprisingly effective suggestions…
1. Scoot To Burn Fat
Obviously scooting is a form of exercise and you will burn calories doing it. But there’s more to the tale than that. ‘Scooting is low-impact and low-intensity so your heart rate usually stays in the 60-70% of maximum range, which is where you burn some fat for fuel. However total calorie expenditure is the key component of consistent weight loss, so grab any opportunity you can to burn a few extra calories by scooting,’ says Ben.
2. Shop Around For Lunch
One of the liberating things about having a scooter is that there’s very little faff and you don’t end up in a sweaty mess like cyclists can, which allows you to roam further afield at lunchtime for your choice of healthier meal options. ‘With a shot of activity, your digestive system is primed to make the best use of the nutrients you take in, giving you more energy throughout the day and making you less likely to grab snacks,’ says Ben. And studies have shown that post-lunch exercise may even boost heart health.
3. Scoot Before Breakfast
One trick that exercise experts use to train the body’s fat-burning metabolism is to do low-intensity, fasted sessions. ‘If you do a short, max 30-minute fasted session, such as a steady commute to work, then your body will potentially burn fat stores for fuel rather than relying on energy stored in your muscles,’ says Ben.
4. Recovery Is Easy
If you’re already doing a workout program then you’ll know that PTs recommend doing low-intensity or recovery sessions to help your muscles and CV system adapt. ‘Scooting can offer an ideal recovery cross training session because it is low-impact and will not put additional stress into tired running muscles, but will retain lean muscle,’ says Ben. ‘It promotes bloodflow and nutrient delivery, and also helps with the removal of the by-products of exercise, helping your body recover from a hard session.'
5. Grab A Calorie Combo
Having to make time for the gym or a run in the park means getting there ASAP in a car or tube. But factor in congestion and scooting can be as fast as either, while combining with your workout to boost your calorie burn - and more… ’You can use scooting as part of your warm-up - it will get your CV system primed and ready, warm up your muscles without over-taxing them and lift your energy levels ready for a good workout,’ says Ben.
6. Scoot To Prevent Niggles And Worse
It’s so demotivating when you start a new exercise routine only to get injured and have to hit pause - fortunately regular scooting can cut your risk of future injury. ‘Because scooting combines a unilateral static hold with movement it requires balance - this recruits your core and strengthens the stabilising muscles in your joints - but train yourself to scoot on both sides,’ says Ben.
7. Chase The Burn
If you’re already a scooter fan you’ve probably scoped out your routes to get the flattest, easiest ride possible. But that’s missing a trick, says Ben. ‘Scooting up a slight incline is like adjusting the angle on a treadmill. If you want to increase the potential fitness benefits and calorie burn of scooting it’s all you need to do.’