Ride and Read: University of Windsor library gets new study bikes

The University of Windsor's Leddy Library is one of the first academic libraries in Canada to offer students a chance to ride while they read.

'I didn't think it would be that comfortable but the seat is super comfy'

University of Windsor student Paige Coyne test drives a fit-bike at Leddy Library. (Kaitie Fraser/CBC)

The University of Windsor's Leddy Library is one of the first academic libraries in Canada to offer students a chance to ride while they read.

The library is now home to three new exercise study-bikes that allow students to study or type on a laptop while they pedal. 

"When they come to the library, if they're here for a prolonged period of time, after a while the students bodies might be getting sore," said Sarah Woodruff, associate professor of Kinesiology at the university. "They need to get up and move around, so this just gives them the option to do something while they are studying." 

The idea came from information services librarian Sharon Munro, who read about the success of these types of bikes in a magazine article.

Associate Professor of Kinesiology, Sarah Woodruff demonstrates Leddy library's new fit-bikes. She said the bikes can help students to keep moving, and prevent sedentary behaviours. (Kaitie Fraser/CBC)

"I thought it sounded like a really good idea for us to try, too," said Munro. "It's really exciting to see these bikes actually here."

The idea fits with the library's mandate to provide a "healthy, stimulating and innovative learning environment," Munro said. 

The bikes are equipped with a desk, odometer and resistance bands for bicep curls.

"It's actually amazing," said student Paige Coyne, as she tried the bike out. "I didn't think it would be that comfortable but the seat is super comfy."

Although the bikes are not ideal for all types of studying or work, said Woodruff, they provide relief from a sedentary state. 

"Getting up and moving at least once an hour is a good idea, we don't want you sitting in the same position," she said.

The three bikes are on the main floor of the library, and the university hopes to get more in the future. 

University of Windsor student Sara Santarossa does bicep curls on a Leddy Library fit-bike. (Kaitie Fraser/CBC)