Is it okay to ride if you are hypertensive?


Well-Known Member
May 26, 2015
This question popped up in my mind when I heard the fun run organizer on radio that they do not allow runners who have high blood pressure. They have a doctor in the registration area to check on the health of the participating runners to avoid potential injuries due to health issues.

I understand that blood pressure rises when you exert effort and it is normally high when you are tired. But is having high blood pressure anathema to riding a bike?
This is an excellent question and one which I think is probably relevant to a lot of people, even those who don't realize it. I have heard pretty much the same thing about running in the past and jogging also but I'm not so sure. I think it's probably a case of knowing your limits and not over-exerting yourself too much. Apparently, cycling is supposed to be good for people with hypertension because it helps to strengthen the cardiovascular system and helps blood-flow and vein activity. But then again, you would think the same about running if that was the case, wouldn't you?
Excellent question! Well, those having high blood pressure, malignant in particular, are strictly NOT advised to ride a bike. Exercise has got many benefits and regular aerobic exercise has been proven to reduce hypertension. However, while you ride a bike your heart rate goes up and as a result, your BP will go up. You'd have witnessed many cases of exhaustion related heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular problems.

Your doctor's advice is a must if you plan to undertake outdoor biking. However, a relaxed static biking for people who have a BP of below 140/90 is fine.
Any and every form of physical exercise, no matter what it is, causes your heart rate and blood pressure to increase. That's completely natural Your blood pressure and heart rate do not continue to stay at that level, however, and not only return to normal after exercise but the endorphins that kick in after exercising and then beginning to relax and what helps to lower your heart rate and blood pressure. The more you push yourself with exercise, the more the endorphins kick into action.
Everyone is different , so this is a question for your personal physician. The question is too vague without specific details.
My own general practitioner would say no. He is a big believer that folks with high blood pressure need to take things easy, as there are many dangers associated with over-exerting oneself when they suffer from this condition. That doesn't mean that they shouldn't stay active, but they need to look at less intense activities. Perhaps they could try walking or jogging short distances, but only after they've consulted their doctor.
I think it's also a matter of how much hypertension. I've always been borderline when my weight has gone up, but by losing weight and exercising, I get it right back down. My doctor LOVES the fact that I ride so much. Someone with chronic and severe hypertension is a different situation, though. As mentioned, it's a question for your doctor.
I was hoping to read more about this topic because my friend is suffering from this condition and I thought riding would help. Maybe a less strenuous ride until he hears from his doctor. Is there a doctor in this forum :)
I'm hypertensive and taking medication but I never stop riding, a well rounded exercise is good for hypertensive people, I'm always aware of my limitations. I rest when I'm tired and I never overexert myself. Moderation is the key.
Yeah, just make sure to always take the medication prescribed to you, have regular checkups and blood pressure checks, and know your limits. Don't push yourself too hard when you are already feeling flustered. Always bring an emergency medication at hand.