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Robert Michael

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For well over a hundred years, people have hopped on bicycles for transportation, recreation, competition, and more. In many parts of the world, spinning pedals moves goods and generates electricity. While usually attached to two wheels, pedal power takes many forms, adapting to a wide range of needs. Globally, over 100 million bicycles are produced every year - over 60% of them in China - easily doubling world production of automobiles. Efficient, clean, and cheap, pedal power in all its forms can solve modern problems with basic technology, and offers a health benefit to those cranking away. And it's hard to beat the simple joy of riding a bike. Gathered here are images of people around the world as we pedal for a reason, or just because. -- Lane Turner (49 photos total)
A boy rides his bicycle near rice fields in Bago, Myanmar on February 20, 2012. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

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After an emotional run through the tournament that few predicted, Japan emerged yesterday as the unlikely champion of the FIFA Women's World Cup Germany 2011. After enduring the triple disasters of the earthquake, tsunami, and Fukushima Diaichi nuclear catastrophe, Japan rejoiced in the first good news in months. The final came in dramatic fashion against the United States in a penalty shoot-out after the score was tied 2-2 in regulation. Sixteen countries fought for the title in Germany, resulting in the first Asian world champion. Collected here are images of the games, fans, and celebration. -- Lane Turner (30 photos total)
Japan's midfielder Homare Sawa celebrates with the trophy and teammates after the FIFA Women's Football World Cup final match against the US on July 17, 2011 in Frankfurt am Main Germany. Japan won 3-1 in a penalty shoot-out after the final had finished 2-2 following extra-time. (Patrik Stollarz/AFP/Getty Images)

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