It’s the newest thing sweeping the news and social media. For bike lovers and scooter riders alike, the Lopifit seems to be the best of both worlds. It offers a fun, invigorating way to travel while also using less energy. It’s gotten a lot of publicity as more people find out about the new product.
With New Products Comes New Risks
In the above video, you can see that this “bike” marries a treadmill with a two wheeled balancing platform similar to that found on scooters that children use. And of course, as with all new products there are potential known and unknown risks. Unfortunately, travel along roads for bicyclists and pedestrians is dangerous across the country. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in 2013 alone, there were 743 bicyclist fatalities. Furthermore, another 48,000 were injured in similar accidents. Altogether, these represent almost 2% of deaths on the road– an astounding figure considering the miles traveled.
With such risk on the road for all travelers, it is important to remember such factors as new products are introduced. The Lopifit has much less time on the road and considerably less study for safety. Large bicycle companies have taken years to study safety and to test their products. Furthermore, there are millions of Americans that grew up riding bicycles and understand even the smallest nuances of safety and how to properly ride. With a new product, any inexperience could have a severely deleterious effect on safety.
There are serious potential issues with the Lopifit’s very design. As a walking bike, the device does not have the same relationship to the human body. When riding a standard bike, a person’s body is around the frame, with legs on either side and feet on the pedals. Here there are just hands on the handles, not offering the same control in case of a fall or accident. Furthermore promotional materials do not feature people wearing safety pads or helmets, a must for anyone riding a Lopifit on the road or anywhere.
It’s important to consider all of these factors if you’re thinking about buying a Lopifit this year. There are concerns about how its improper use could lead to severe injury or death.