“The effect of two wheels”, or Poles burn “pandemic” calories on newly purchased bikes

Twenty years ago, Leonard Lauder, observing the development of the economic crisis in the USA and analyzing previous periods of recession, created the foundation for the so-called “Lipstick effect”. In a nutshell, it means that in times of growing uncertainty, many consumers do not give up buying cosmetics, including the lipsticks, because they treat them as a small pleasure that sweetens the burden of giving up more expensive purchases. Referring to the above, in June 2020 we can be tempted to say that the COVID-19 pandemic taught us that there is also a “two-wheel effect”. As it turns out, after defrosting the economy, Poles rushed to bicycle stores. On Allegro, sales growth vs May 2019 was 127%. And all of this even though such a purchase is a) unnecessary to survive, b) expensive, c) very expensive, if you have children, d) difficult, because the choice is enormous and online advice is unreliable (basically, everything that costs less than 5,000 PLN is an unworthy junk that falls apart after the first ride).

Of course, there are many reasons for this boom. First of all, we feel the need to move, and often also to burn body fat gained during the last two months. Secondly, we are looking for alternatives to those forms of leisure that are difficult to implement in the current situation, and might be risky. Thirdly, many people probably change to the bike because of the fear of the public transport. Fourthly, the snowball effect works here called the “herd behaviour”. The increasing number of cyclists and content devoted to bicycles themselves (like this article!) creates the subconscious belief that “everyone rides”, which turns into the growing need to buy a two-wheeler. After all, our species is evolutionarily adapted to behave like others „from our herd.” And exceptionally, there is a chance that, in this case, the simplified rule of inference will bring us more benefit than harm.

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Source:, Google Trends