Teen girls who walked or biked to school in a Spanish study performed better at school in verbal and math skills that their peers who rode the bus or got to school in a car, according to a 2011 research study funded by the Spanish National Research Council.
Photo Credit: © April Streeter
Unfortunately, in the Nordic nations and in the U.S., the trend for how children get to school is going in the opposite direction - more children are getting driven to school than ever before. Parents perceive walking and biking to be dangerous, while actually things have gotten safer for cyclists in many, many places, and overall fatalities are trending downward.
Of course, correlation is not causality, so it can't be said with certainty that riding a bike to school will make you smarter, anymore than it can be said that driving in cars will make you fat. With biking, there are so many other benefits, real and perceived, that it certainly seems worth a try to get parents off the driving-the-kids-to-school frenzy.