What you need to know now about women’s cycling

You’re noticing it in the bike lanes of New York City and everywhere. Women are on a roll, and the charge is on to engage even greater numbers. The new Women Bike program of the League of American Bicyclists yesterday released a wide-ranging report on women and bicycling in the United States. Following is the announcement, including highlights from this trove of statistics and stories that reveals the power and the potential of women’s cycling. More to come!

As the summer riding season peaks, the League of American Bicyclists has released the first-of-its kind report showcasing a trend seen nationwide: women are changing the face of bicycling, and bicycling is transforming the lives of women.

Women on a Roll, a product of the League’s Women Bike program, compiles more than 100 original and trusted sources of data to showcase the growth and potential of female bicyclists in the United States. It also suggests five key focus areas – the 5 Cs – to increase women’s ridership: Comfort, Convenience, Consumer Products, Confidence and Community.

“Increasingly, the advocacy groups and industry leaders are recognizing the gender gap as a clear – and critical – limitation to growing the bike movement and the market,” said Carolyn Szczepanski, the League’s Director of Communications and Women Bike. “This report puts hard data behind that imperative – and reveals what’s working in getting more women on bikes and where there is clear opportunity to increase female leadership and participation.”

According to the report:

  • 82 percent of American women have a positive view of bicyclists
  • From 2003 to 2012, the number of women and girls who bicycle rose 20 percent, compared to a .5 percent decline among men.
  • Women are the new majority: 60 percent of bicycle owners aged 17 to 28 years old are women.
  • Women accounted for 37 percent of the bicycle market in 2011, spending $2.3 billion.
  • 45 percent of local and state bicycle advocacy organization staff are female.
  • 89 percent of bike shop owners are male, but 33 percent of shops are run by a husband/wife team.
  • Women are still underrepresented in leadership positions, including the boards of national industry and advocacy organizations – and their membership.

Download Women on a Roll here and stay engaged as Women Bike delves further into the data and concepts in the report with female leaders over the next three months.

First up: Join Women Bike and members of our Advisory Board for a Twitter chat (#womenbike) on Friday, Aug. 9 at 2 p.m. Eastern aswe discuss this exciting new report.

Learn more about Women Bike at  bikeleague.org/womenbike 

Photo: velojoy at the women’s ride to celebrate the launch of Citi Bike in NYC

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