ST. GEORGE — Feel like a superhero. Ride an e-bike. With every pedal, the electric bicycle smoothly accelerates twice as fast as a normal bike, making you feel like you’re riding in zero gravity on the moon. Disengage the battery powered motor, and you’re instantaneously back on earth pedaling a conventional bike again.
Remember what it felt like the first time you ever hopped on a trampoline and laughed in the face of earth’s gravitational constraints? Riding an e-bike is the horizontal equivalent. Luckily, if you want to feel this sensation for yourself, Southern Utah has one of the largest e-bike dealers in the country, St. George’s own eSpokes electric bike shop at 476 East Riverside Drive. ESpokes is not only an impressive store of e-bikes and gear, it’s a full service shop as well. You can test drive, buy or rent all things related to electronic bicycles at eSpokes.
An e-bike from eSpokes doesn’t only make you feel like you have superhuman powers, it will totally change your perspective on exercise. This is one of those rare innovations that actually delivers what it promises. E-bikes simply make exercising easier and more fun. If you’re one of those people who has promised yourself for years that you want to bike more, eSpokes will be your liberator.
Whats an e-bike?
ESpokes has a variety of e-bikes. They have comfortable beach cruisers, off-road mountain bikes, road bikes, and in-betweeners. They even have electric tricycles for those who have balance concerns. Unlike conventional bicycles, the bikes at eSpokes have one small improvement: a silent battery powered motor that gives the rider extra oomph with each pedal – referred to as “pedal assist.”
Even with a motor, e-bikes at first glance look just like a traditional bicycle. In fact, on most of the bikes at eSpokes, the motors are inconspicuous. The only noticeable difference on many e-bikes is the battery on the rear rack or in the thicker drop bar of the bike frame. The e-bike can be charged by plugging it in to an outlet or by removing the battery and charging it on a charger.
ESpokes carries the best brands of e-bikes, most of them built by established conventional bike manufacturers like BH, and BMC. These companies have been making conventional bikes for over 50 years and have recently added e-bikes to their product lines.
“Everything on here is standard bike stuff,” eSpokes President David Rasmussen said, “these companies know how to make bikes.”
The great equalizers
E-bikes are the great equalizers. No matter your skill level, an e-bike will give you just enough edge to improve your riding. Whether you want to ride like a pro, ride with someone who is faster than you, ride longer distances, or just start riding again, e-bikes are your answer.
Once you get an e-bike it’s much more difficult not to exercise. Although, admittedly, with the motor on, you don’t get as fierce a workout as on a conventional bike. However, you still get a serious workout. On an electric bike, with the power on, the rider burns 80 percent of the calories they would burn on a regular bike, Rasmussen said. The more significant fact for most people is that they actually ride their electric bike as opposed to their conventional bike.
“Ultimately, you’re getting a lot more exercise than you were not riding at all,” Rasmussen said.
The beautiful thing is that you can turn the motor off anytime you want and pedal till you drop. The difference is, on an e-bike, once you drop, or hit that steep incline where you usually turn around, you can kick the power back on, and continue riding to your heart’s content.
The evolution of the bicycle
E-bikes are the next step in the evolution of the bicycle. Hop on one and you’ll know why. Before modern bicycle innovations, bikes only had one gear. Once derailleurs were invented, some old-school cyclists felt like gears were over the top. Back then, these cyclists considered the futuristic invention of derailleurs and gears to be cheating. Soon enough modern bikes became the standard, and that attitude nearly disappeared.
There will always be traditionalists, but like it or not, e-bikes are the next step in the evolution of the bicycle. Even for hardcore, elite riders, e-bikes have a great benefit. If a cyclist sustains an injury, has a health issue, or would like to recover more quickly, an e-bike can be used to rehab and recover without strain and return him sooner to the riding he loves.
Electric bikes are also a great commuting option for cyclists; enjoy your conventional ride in the morning and spin your legs out on an e-bike on your way into work, allowing your legs to recover each day. Then at the end of a long day, you have the motor to help you get home.
“I think this is going to be a really big thing in the future as technology improves, gas prices keep going up, and everybody wants to stay green,” Steve Campbell, an eSpokes customer, said.
Because e-bikes are meant to be human powered, the top speed on one typically ranges anywhere from 15 to 25 mph which is roughly 10 mph faster than most people can ride a conventional pedal bike. Depending on the model, the batteries last anywhere from 20 miles to 45 miles a charge. Batteries take anywhere from 4-6 hours to charge and some of the newer models recharge themselves when the riders pedal downhill or use the brakes.
All of these models can be found at eSpokes this holiday season ranging from $1,100 – $4,000. Are you setting a New Year’s resolution to lose weight or save money? Well, here’s your solution. Why not do both by purchasing an e-bike. This way you can commute to work on your bike which will save you gas money and lose weight in the process. An e-bike will pay for itself – and give you “Freedom to Ride!”
A D V E R T O R I A L
Recap and resources
- eSpokes website | Facebook | Twitter
- Address: 476 E. Riverside Dr. 1B St. George, UT 84790 | Telephone: 435-688-1830
- Hours: Monday – Friday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. | Saturday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Sunday: Closed
Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2013, all rights reserved.