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53

Rank, Folke and Jespersen (2001), "Differences in cyclists and car drivers exposure to air pollution from traffic in the city of Copenhagen", The Science of The Total Environment, 279:131-136 teams of two cyclists and two car drivers in two cars were equipped with personal air samplers while driving for 4 hours on 2 different days in the morning traffic ...


26

Exposure while cycling is generally no worse than being in a vehicle. In fact can be better depending on the weather and the amount of solvents in the plastic of your car. You do experience more when cycling heavily - simply because you breath more - but general medical evidence is that the benefits of increased fitness greatly outweigh any problems. The ...


17

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2920084/ - "On average, the estimated health benefits of cycling were substantially larger than the risks relative to car driving for individuals shifting their mode of transport." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22124913 - "We estimate that beneficial effects of increased physical activity are substantially ...


12

Ways to reduce your exposure include: riding on bike paths and secondary streets riding at off-peak times (when traffic is low) riding when commercial traffic (e.g. diesel-consuming trucks) is lower riding before the sun gets high or after it begins to go down: ozone is produced by sunlight and takes time to develop (see image below from Chapter 6) ...


7

From The Guardian: (I suggest you Click through & read the whole article) "It’s a scenario familiar to any urban cyclist: you’re stuck behind a fume-belching bus or taxi, a choking diesel aroma wafting through your lungs. You think: is this really the healthy option? The good, if simple, answer from pollution experts is: yes. Cycling does remain many, ...


7

This issue was highlighted on the BBC News website Cyclists are 'unaware of the risks from pollution' in an article aimed at raising awareness in cyclist of the short and long term effects of air pollution. The article makes for a good read. A brief summary, Primarily pollution cause the cyclist’s airways to become inflamed and therefore narrow, trigger ...


6

There are two points to consider. As explained by @renesis even though you are exposed to pollutants, your overall exposure does not appear to differ significantly from car drivers (note the study was carried out in Copenhagen, I am not sure automotive how pollution regulations compare to the US). Because you are also getting exercise, your overall health ...


6

To answer this question (which is different from asking "Which mask?") you have to define what "pollution" means and then examine the available masks to see if they do anything to reduce it. Just offhand, I believe that "pollution", in an urban traffic setting, consists of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide (and various other sulfur compounds), ...


6

I get this question once in a while (working in Danish Cyclist Federation). It seems to be based on the idea that commuting by bike will expose you to more pollution than commuting by car. I have seen no research that proves this. However, I have seen research indicating that the opposite might be true. Some was in danish, but here's some in english and ...


6

Today, the major part of city masks were made to avoid breathing dust as @mgb said, you need more than a simple mask to stop micro particles. Anyway try http://www.u2sportmask.com/ (for example).


6

I ride a bike almost everyday not in very clean city - Kharkov, UA. And had similar problem as you have. My decision was: breathe in by nose, breathe out by mouth. It's easier than doing this by nose only, and safer for lungs when breathe just by mouth. I'll explain: Mouth is not very good defended from a polluted air. But in nose we have small hairs that ...


5

You have a few options. One that has been marketed to cyclists has been the totobo mask which is from what I gather a re-usable N95 mask (although uncertified by any agency) with replaceable filter peices. It's cheap to try, at only $25 or so. The Respro is another option. It seems like a bit more customizable, and looks like the neoprene would ...


4

I used a combination of a Respro Techno Anti-Pollution Mask and some Decathlon clear glasses like the ones Narcis Calvet suggests. I found that in the winter breathing out through the mask caused breath to leak out of the top of the mask and condense on the glasses, which was most annoying when standing still at the traffic lights.The pollution mask I found ...


3

No. The typical "pollution mask" I have seen are modified or styled after surgical masks. Surgical masks are NOT designed to filter intake air. They are designed to direct exhaust air away from a patient who is opened up and vulnerable to infection. The masks shown on your links appear to have possibly a sealing face mask, but the filters look clearly ...


3

that leaves the danger of the particulate matter which in my opinion, could be prevented with just a cloth wrapped around the nose and mouth. Diesel particulates are mostly in the 3-30 nanometre range of sizes. This is very fine and will not be stopped by normal cloth. 3M say a P2 (EU rating) filter should reduce exposure to diesel particulates. A P3 ...


3

The only ones I know of are made by Respro, like this, but I'm sure other brands are available. Summary: yes, cycling-specific ones do exist. Searching turns up some discussion, blogs, forums and user reviews in online cycling shops. However, this is all anecdotal, and it isn't clear: how useful they are this will depend quite particularly on your ...


2

Because anti-pollution masks contribute to overheating (that's my experience), they are an option in colder climates or during winter. Not only it is filtering the air, but is also warming it and your face. Get a double-filter one for less air resistance (theoretically half - parallel air restrictions act just like parallel resistors). Another point is that ...


2

Along similar lines as @Murph suggests cyclists are often less affected than vehicle passengers because the air intakes on most cars are placed lower to the ground than most cyclists' noses (recumbent riders take note ...). Many of the nasties, particularly particulate matter, sink and aren't at the higher levels. Personally I've always struggled to breath ...


2

Interestingly, there was a point where studies (too long ago for me to even begin to remember sources) suggested that cyclists were probably less affected by pollution because, as a consequence of the regular exercise they were taking, their lungs were more efficient and so needed less air (and hence pollutants) to get the same oxygen. This was perhaps ...


2

I've worn the respro in Beijing for about a year where the air pollution apparently causes lung cancer. Of course, that is a long term effect that is hard to measure immediately, but I can say that the air smells much cleaner and I "feel" better after riding through traffic with the mask on as opposed to without it. Your face gets a bit sweaty, but it can be ...


2

Trials on the N95 concluded that it didn't really do a good job filtering chemical pollution. http://www.controlled-trials.com/ISRCTN74390617 and the results: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23013369


1

Seems like the conclusions from the reports posted for this question range from "it's not a concern" to "it will kill you." Here's my two cents on short-term effects:I live in a fairly polluted city (22nd in the US this year, I believe) and my experience is that anything above what is considered "moderate" ozone levels (0.060 to 0.075 ppm, source links ...



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