To Scoot or not to Scoot – How uncool is it really?

Having just moved to a new house in the centre of Bristol, I now live a lot closer to work and friends. I used to live in the country, and it would take me an hour plus to drive into work but now it takes me only 35 minutes to walk.

The other day on the way to work a little girl shot past me on her pink scooter singing away at the top of her voice and I thought … hmm, why is it that adults don’t do that? From there I created a short and simple survey and sent it out to my network. It showed that 55% hadn’t even thought about using a scooter but 63% would consider using one.

And so, my quest started…why haven’t adults considered using a scooter before? We buy them for our kids to whizz around on as they are lighter and easier to transport compared to bicycles, why not buy them for ourselves too?

The parameters were relatively clear – something that would get me to work a bit quicker than walking, something that was easy to fold down and carry on the train or plane for commuting. At SustainIt we strive to try and be as eco-conscious as possible, so it made sense to try out another kind of carbon free, eco transport!

My commute to and from the office when I am in Bristol is approximately 2.6km each way with a couple of really steep hills thrown in along the way. But my main residence is in Belgium so ideally wanted something that was easy to take on the plane as hand luggage so I could use it there too. It was also worth considering that the pavements and side roads are very cobbled so the scooter will need to cope with lots of different terrains. I’m moderately fit but I do have arthritis in my knees, so I had to be careful and consider if the impact would be too much?

Mark at Createfit commented that “Scooting is a great exercise. I would recommend switching legs regularly for the simple fact of symmetry and balance. I’m sure one leg will start out feeling stronger than the other until you’ve got enough distance under your belt. Depending on the leg action used, I would suggest its mainly glutes and hip flexors that are utilised. With there being a limited amount of knee bend, the quads won’t add a great deal to the movement apart from stabilisation”.
With any kind of exercise there are great benefits such as improved circulation, fresh air, low impact and a positive intensity on the cardiovascular system … so what’s there not to like?

Cycling tends to use just the legs and your top half is pretty stationery. Scooter riding is more of a whole-body workout. Quads (thighs) are key but you’ll also need your core and arms – both engaged and stretched. Your heart will get a bit more of work out too, especially when your scooting up those pesky hills!

I’ve calculated that scooting 2.6km to work will mean I’ll burn about 300 calories. Cycling tends to use just the legs and your top half is pretty stationery. Scooter riding is more of a whole-body workout. Quads (thighs) are key but you’ll also need your core and arms – both engaged and stretched. Your heart will get a bit more of work out too, especially when you’re scooting up those pesky hills!
I’ve calculated that scooting 2.6km to work will mean I’ll burn about 300 calories.

Cycling burns around 180 calories and according to my Garmin Fitbit walking the same route but for double the time says I burn 180 calories as well, so all in all it sounds pretty good so far! What specification should I be looking for? According to scooter brand Oxelo, smaller scooters are perfect for short commutes but if you do a long journey, between 2km to 5km (just over a mile to 3 miles), you’ll want one with wheels that are at least 200mm wide. To find out more about how I got on lookout for part 2.

By Charlie Stockford, CEO

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