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Nature and cycling: A literature review

Cairns, Mel

Nature and cycling: A literature review Thumbnail



Both cycling and nature offer a range of benefits to human and planetary wellbeing. Little extant literature has directly asked how nature is experienced as part of cycling practices or how far this may influence cycling. Nonetheless, several studies concerned with more general cycling experiences have reported relevant findings and many studies have assessed relationships between environmental attributes and active travel outcomes. This presentation outlines findings from the initial literature review phase of an ongoing doctoral research project seeking to explore ‘nature cycling’ practices from a sustainable wellbeing perspective. The review brings together findings from literatures in multiple disciplines to identify the ways in which nature and nature connectedness influence, or form part of, cycling experiences and to evaluate the evidence relating to associations between natural environmental factors and cycling outcomes. The reviewed literature covered multiple continents and included active transport, mountain biking, leisure and cycle tourism. In experiential literature, green environments and natural features were consistently found to contribute positively to cycling experiences through increased enjoyment, wellbeing, challenge, opportunities for nature connection and in several other ways. Some aspects also contributed negatively. However, there was mixed evidence regarding quantitative associations between natural environmental attributes and cycling outcomes. The reported preferences for, and appeal of, ‘nature cycling’ could have implications for cycle promotion, infrastructure design and cycle tourism.

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name Royal Geographical Society Postgraduate Midterm 2024
Start Date Apr 25, 2024
End Date Apr 26, 2024
Deposit Date Jul 3, 2024
Publicly Available Date Jul 4, 2024
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