Apr. 8 - A pair of Bulgarian cycling enthusiasts have found a novel way to combine a whole body workout with their daily commute. Architects Martin Angelov and Mihail Klenov have invented what they call the Halfbike, a standing bicycle that will exercise areas of the body conventional cycling won't reach. Jim Drury reports.
This is the Halfbike. It's a tricycle designed to be ridden standing up, providing an efficient means of transportation and a full body workout at the same time. Pedals drive its front wheel, while the small back wheels pivot, allowing riders to steer by leaning and using the weight of their bodies. Co-inventor, Bulgarian architect Mihail Klenov, says the Halfbike took numerous prototypes to perfect. SOUNDBITE (Bulgarian) MIHAIL KLENOV, CO-INVENTOR, SAYING: "It took us several years of discussions and improvements to get to the present result. We used several prototypes to see how the idea could develop into a working model. " And this model he says works in two ways. It fits well on public transportation and when in use, works muscles conventional bicycles don't reach...although mastering it does take practice, as at least one willing volunteer discovered. SOUNDBITE (Bulgarian) STEFAN, PASSER BY, SAYING: "I like very much the fact it lacks a seat, because this way you work out each part of your body. I think with a bit of training I will be able to ride just like him." UPSOT: STEFAN LAUGHING Klenov's partner, Martin Angelov says they're not seeking to put traditional bike manufacturers out of business. He says their invention is simply a new take on a tried and true idea. SOUNDBITE (Bulgarian) MARTIN ANGELOV, CO-INVENTOR, SAYING: "The bike is an ingenious invention, a result of evolution; and something we would never try and do away with. Our idea is to bring variety, to give more choice, not to beat the bike's effectiveness. We see it as quite an entertaining way to move around city." The pair hope to start mass-producing the Halfbike in the next few months, and give cyclists a new way to exercise their passion.