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I had written off bicycles, until e-bikes unlocked an entire world for me

Himiway C5
Digital Trends

I have a lot working against me when it comes to riding a traditional bicycle: collapsed foot arches, bad knees, and nerve issues that extend into my pelvic floor and make it challenging for me to sit for any extended time on a standard bicycle seat. For all those reasons, I gave up on any chance of comfortably bicycling as an adult.

But when Himiway offered to let me try its new C5 e-bike, which features a motorcycle-style saddle that is both wider and longer than the average bicycle seat, I reconsidered. I cautiously hoped it could improve my ability to enjoy bike riding. However, I didn’t expect it to completely change my life for the better.

The making of an e-bike guy

From the Engwe M20 to the Ride1up Revv1, e-bikes have embraced the motorcycle aesthetic, and the larger seats that go with them. For most riders, it’s just a cool look. For me, it opened a whole new world.

The first time I took the Himiway C5 for a spin, I instantly noted that the soft and extended saddle provided fantastic support. The extra space to reposition myself also meant a drastic reduction in pressure. Whereas a few minutes on any normal bicycle would’ve had me hopping off in discomfort, I spent over half an hour leisurely cruising through my neighborhood on this new e-bike, mixing short periods of assisted pedaling with lengthy stints of using the throttle to just breeze around and enjoy the view.

Full of newfound confidence, I rode over to the trailhead just outside my neighborhood and set off down the paved trail, reveling in the slight adrenaline boost that came from holding down the throttle and feeling the cool air rapidly sweeping across my face. With 80 miles of range, I was able to make it to another county and back in an hour or so, having made only a dent in the battery. Totally enamored with this fast, but laid-back method of travel, I just wanted to do it all again in the other direction. So I did.

All it took was this one trip on the Himiway C5 for me to realize it had instantly put an end to many of the problems standing between me and biking. When I reached my driveway again that first evening, I noted a lack of pain and an immediate desire to charge up the battery and return to the trail the following day. I walked in with a smile on my face, prompting my wife to smile back and ask, “I guess you’re an e-bike guy now?” Yeah, I guess I am.

Better in every way

Those benefits turned out to just scratch the surface. As an autistic person, I quickly found that an e-bike has solved additional problems for me. Most notably, it requires less preparation and commitment before a ride, and results in better body temperature regulation.

While cruising on a standard bicycle in the middle of summer is all but certain to drench me in sweat (a sensory nightmare for me), my new e-bike allows me to exert myself only as much as I’m comfortable. At any time, I can max out the pedal assist to reduce strain, or simply hold down the throttle to enjoy a completely stress-free cruise. As a result, I don’t have to worry about wearing uncomfortable workout clothes, or rushing home for a shower.

I also love that the Himiway C5 hits 20 mph handily to get me back home quickly if I’m ever feeling sensory overload, or simply become desperate to wrap things up halfway through a trip. And when my mind and body do feel up to a brief workout, I can turn off all of the assists at any time. Long story, short: I get to enjoy rides on my terms, and that’s a dream come true.

In the past two weeks that I’ve spent having fun exploring the trail and beyond on the Himiway C5, my mental health and feeling of wellness have noticeably improved. It’s given me a new way to spend quality time with my wife, who loves to ride her cruiser alongside me, allowing us to discover interesting landmarks or find perfect areas to stop and sit quietly together in the sounds of nature.

I’ve even started to frequent a spot filled with insulated boxes turned into makeshift cat shelters, where people leave food and water for some cute and furry friends. And I may or may not spend too much money on canned tuna now.

Opening the door

The Himiway C5 is my first e-bike, so I can’t say that it’s the only model that fits my unique seating needs. But I can say with confidence that I’m now thrilled to check out plenty more e-bikes in the future. I feel as if I’ve uncovered a whole new way to more comfortably see what’s out there in the world.

Taking a bike out for the day is pretty standard fare for many folks. But the truth is that, if I had to endure the struggle of working against my body on a traditional bicycle, I don’t think I’d have ever found all of these small, but meaningful joys that have made my life feel so much fuller, and my mind so much clearer.

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Billy Givens
Billy Givens is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience writing gaming, film, and tech content. His work can be…
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