A new report, has after analysing the data, come up with a figure for the public health benefit offered by cycling. The study, Cycling: Getting Australia Moving, funded by the Australian government and prepared by Melbourne University and the Cycling Promotion Fund concluded that thanks to the increased health of cyclists, public health services are spared an estimated $227.2m AUD annually.

They also noted that per 100,000 participants, an individual is seven times more likely to be hospitalised playing football than riding a bicycle. And observed that “the more cyclists there are, the safer it becomes. In fact, if cycling doubles, the risk per kilometre falls by 34%.” The report’s authors were pleased to find that between 2001 and 2006 bicycle journeys to work had risen 22% in Australian capital cities, with Melbourne being the standout, recording over a 42% increase.

With the cost of gas off the charts, maybe Americans should start bicycling more.