One of my recent bike fit customers explained on his intake form that he bikes for "transportation, sanity." That makes complete sense to me. And probably to you. But why is it so hard to explain precisely why biking makes a person feel so good?
Does this question stump scientists just as does the mysterious physics of the bicycle itself? Luckily, I think we've got a hot lead on a good explanation.
His name is Slomo. He rides roller blades really slowly and has a theory about the relationship between happiness and lateral acceleration. He explains just briefly in this video how the forces of acceleration in his inner ear produce a feeling of expansiveness and joy, but one gets the sense that he'd be happy to tell you more.
As a cyclist, this strikes me as a confirmation of what I know in my (tiny ear) bones - that riding my bike makes me ridiculously happy. As a bike designer, it has me wondering if steering geometry can be optimized for lateral acceleration-induced joy. But as a human, I'm just thrilled that Slomo's got his slow roll on.