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Physical, Biological And Psychological Aspects Of Riding A Bicycle

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Our everyday lives consist of activities and processes that could be compared to a multi-step equation. Every action we make has to be translated from impulses within our body, then needs to be interpreted before we can make any movement. It is like a series of rapid moving impulses from our brains to get any job done. More specifically, what is necessary to happen in order to ride a bike. I need to be in/or beyond the concrete operational stage to learn how to ride a bike. Concrete operations is a stage in Piaget’s stages for cognitive development. Piaget’s theory consists of four stages: sensorimotor, pre-operational, concrete operational, and formal operational. Being in the third stage (concrete operational) allows us to think in an organized fashion, as well as think rationally. Concrete operations usually happen at the age of seven to around eleven. Children in this stage have the ability to complete a multitude of different tasks, as well as have strongly developed communication skills. To be able to ride a bike we have to be able to understand that our movements and actions create and control outcomes. In the context of riding a bike, we would have to understand that pushing off and continuous pedaling, will allow the bike to travel faster and farther. During this stage, psychologists believe that children only understand in great detail when the object is right in front of them. So to solve this issue, parents usually have the child start on the bike and try it for themselves first, this allows children to get an understanding of what needs to be done to make the bike move.

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I need my motor cortex located in the frontal lobe to pedal a bike. When riding a bike you need to be able to have your brain send signals to move your legs to be able to pedal. The motor cortex is where the brain produces its neural impulses. Neural impulses lead to carrying out our body movements. In order to ride a bike, we need to move our legs at a consistent pace. The primary motor cortex releases the impulse that will travel to motor neurons, which bring the impulses away from the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) until the impulses reach our muscles and we have the ability to move. More specifically, a neural impluse reaches a point called the neuromuscular junction, allowing a chemical message to be released by a neurotransmitter. The chemical reaction triggers a muscle contraction. The muscle contractions give us the ability to move. I need my occipital lobe to see where I’m biking. When biking we need to be able to process what we are seeing in front of us. The occipital lobe houses the visual cortex, which processes and receives information from the eyes, in the form of sensory nerve impulses. A connection from our eyes to the occipital lobe starts with the retina. The retina has an image pass over, and the image is transmitted to the optic nerve. The connection between the optic nerve and the occipital lobe is transmitted through a fiber “wall” (or tract) – which its contents consist of mainly white matter- and connects to the occipital lobe. When the information is received by the occipital lobe, it is processed and our brains record the information allowing us the process what our eyes saw.

Vision is an important aspect of riding a bike, without it riding the bike would be impossible. I need the auditory system to balance on a bike. Although hearing is not mandatory or even necessary, it severely changes the process of learning to ride a bike. Our ears not only deal with hearing or audition but balance and equilibrium as well. Spacial detection is controlled by the inner ear, and the inner ear also deals with balance. We have a system in our bodies that allow us the be able to see while in motion- the vestibular system. The vestibular system consists of the utricle, three canals, and the saccule. The utricle and the saccule help process the force of gravity on our bodies. Controlling gravities effect on our body plays a major role in the process of riding a bicycle. Riding a bike requires balance and when the ability to balance is an issue it becomes increasingly difficult to maneuver on a bicycle. Being in equilibrium allows us the walk, move, or run without worrying about falling.

I need operant conditioning to learn how to ride a bike. As children, when we learn to ride a bike, a lot of us learn through operant learning. Operant learning is a way of conditioning behavior by being aware of the consequences. This method is most commonly used on animals to show the results of their behavior and the possible outcomes from them. To a certain point, children could be trained in the same way. Consequences, good or bad, can dictate the way people act. For starters, the simple action of pedaling the bike, with the result of moving forward could be perceived as a positive consequence or even a reward. on top of learning the ability to ride a bike, parents usually congratulate their children for their good work. Making more good consequences, and urging the children to keep doing what they were doing, resulting in fully learning how to ride a bike. Many processes go into learning to ride a bike, what was stated above is nowhere near all the processes that could be explained.

Physical, biological and psychological all go into the process of biking. The brain, neurons, development, and conditioned learning all influence the way we learn and way our body moves. From cognitive development to conditioned learning, our body had systematic and voluntary processes and movements that come together to do one fluid movement, like peddling a bicycle, steering the wheel or even knowing when exactly to pull the break. If so many psychological processes are needed to ride a bike, imagine all that it takes to drive a car or fly an airplane.

18 May 2020

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