Monday, October 19, 2009

How to Get More Bicyclists on the Road

This month's Scientific American has an article with the above title. I quoted David Byrne several months ago about getting more people to ride and now this article continues the thought.

In the U.S., men’s cycling trips surpass women’s by at least 2:1. This ratio stands in marked contrast to cycling in European countries, where urban biking is a way of life and draws about as many women as men—sometimes more. In the Netherlands, where 27 percent of all trips are made by bike, 55 percent of all riders are women. In Germany 12 percent of all trips are on bikes, 49 percent of which are made by women.
“If you want to know if an urban environment supports cycling, you can forget about all the detailed ‘bikeability indexes’—just measure the proportion of cyclists who are female,” says Jan Garrard, a senior lecturer at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, and author of several studies on biking and gender differences.
An article in their July issue (the abstract is online--full article requires a paid subscription or a visit to your local library) discusses the powerful link between physical activity and mental acuity. Staying fit helps us maintain our cognition as we age.

As if I need more reasons to ride.

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