Migraine? Indoor cycling could help alleviate the symptoms

A doctor in America recommends indoor cycling for migraine sufferers, while a Swedish study shows it improves their quality of life

(Image credit: mike prior)

There is currently no cure for migraines, but the millions of people who suffer from them could find some relief through indoor cycling, according to new research.

Dr Carolyn Bernstein, from Beth Isreal-Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts, says the low impact nature of cycling indoors is a great way to alleviate the symptoms of migraines.

Dr Bernstein, a migraine sufferer herself, told Fox21 that exercise in general can help relief, but it is not a complete cure.

“There's not one thing we can do to end the migraines for all time at this point, but there are a lot of different options that we can offer,” she said. “We can hopefully and most likely get you to a better place than where you are now.”

“When we exercise, a lot of the time we feel better afterwards. We get all kinds of neurotransmitters going in our brain that can decrease pain levels.”

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A 2008 study in Sweden put 26 migraine sufferers through a 12-week cycling regime to see how effective the exercise was.

The study monitored how the participants’ VO2 max levels improved throughout the course, as well as their quality of life.

It claimed that people who suffer from regular migraines are typically less active than those who don’t and may even avoid exercise because they feel it triggers the symptoms.

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Stuart Clarke is a News Associates trained journalist who has worked for the likes of the British Olympic Associate, British Rowing and the England and Wales Cricket Board, and of course Cycling Weekly. His work at Cycling Weekly has focused upon professional racing, following the World Tour races and its characters.