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Cyclists weigh less than motorists, study shows

11,000 volunteers have taken part in the study Photo: PA

A new study suggests that motorists are on average four kilos heavier than people who use bikes as their main form of transport.

Researchers from Imperial College London have collaborated with colleagues from across Europe in a study which has monitored the movement of 11,000 volunteers.

They were asked how much time they spend travelling and what mode of transport they use.

Analysis of their height and weight show that those who use cars as their main form of transport are on average four kilos or 8.8 pounds heavier than those who get about by bike.

More volunteers are needed in the study Credit: PA

The EU-funded study is called the Physical Activity through Sustainable Transport Approaches project - or PASTA.

As well as London, volunteers from six European cities are taking part in the study including Antwerp, Barcelona, Orebro in Sweden, Rome, Vienna and Zurich. More people are needed to help researchers draw firmer conclusions.

We don’t have cause and effect yet, but we hope this first finding will encourage more people to take part in the survey so that we can get more data over time and make a link between transport decisions and health.

If people can integrate this into their daily lives, such as going to work or going shopping, then it means you don’t have to make special time commitments and it’s more affordable for everybody.

Getting people to walk and bike as part of their daily transport modes is really an ideal solution to try to tackle this epidemic of physical inactivity.

– Dr Audrey de Nazelle from the Centre for Environmental policy, Imperial College, London

Researchers also hope to establish what leads people to make decisions about their mode of transport and the impact this has on their health.

Anyone who wants to take part in the study can sign up at the PASTA website.