Why don't women cycle?

Discussion in 'Research and Questionnaires' started by ManchesterRider, 11 Jun 2018.

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  1. ManchesterRider

    ManchesterRider New Member

    Did you know that 75% of cyclists are male?

    Cycling provides an opportunity to substitute the car for a healthier option. It doesn't require fuel, it contributes to an active healthy lifestyle, and saves reduces the huge air pollution problem in the UK.

    I am trying to investigate why the gender imbalance exists in cycling in the UK, as in countries such as Germany and The Netherlands women cycle as much as men; furthermore, cycling is a popular mode of transport in these countries.

    So what do you think are the main reasons behind this? Some contributing factors that have emerged in my research are;

    • Harrasment (verbal abuse, funny looks, sexual harrasment)
    • Lack of confidence
    • Fear of traffic
    • Not wanting to break a sweat / potentially mess your hair etc
    • Distance
    • Weather
    • Lack of cycle lanes
    • Hills
    • Not knowing enough about bicycle maintence
    • Bikes are too expensive, not sure where to get a 2nd hand one
    • Time constraints

    Would love to hear your views, please feel free to reply, the more detail the better!

    Hopefully my research can contribute to achieving a gender parity in UK cycling!

    Best wishes,

    University of Manchester
  2. Sharky

    Sharky Veteran

    My mum used to cycle until she had me and then my brother then my two sisters. She took on the role of looking after us. Where as my dad continued cycling to work until his retirement and up to about two weeks before he passed away. Although this was a few years ago, it is probably still a common scenario.
  3. Drago

    Drago Soiler of Y fronts

    The Oval Office
    Welcome to the forum, George University.

    To answer the question, I don't know. In Mrs D's case it's health, which is nothing to do with gender.

    Just out of interest, from what source did you obtain the 75% figure for male riders? That's a strangely neat number. If one is asking people to give credible answers to a question, the question should be framed against credible data.
    Dave 123, MikeG and Dogtrousers like this.
  4. Slick

    Slick Veteran

  5. glasgowcyclist

    glasgowcyclist Charming but somewhat feckless

    My wife packed it in as a direct result of a close pass by a bus driver as she entered a pinch-point. Bullies in 20-tonne vehicles scared the shoot out of her so she gave up after the last episode left her trembling and in tears.

    My daughter still rides occasionally but chooses routes (including pavements) that let her avoid the worst areas.
    raleighnut and Pat "5mph" like this.
  6. CrinklyLion

    CrinklyLion Guest

  7. There's loads of women riders use the Trans Pennine Trail between Penistone and Dunford Bridge and the surrounding roads. I see plenty on my rides in the area. Maybe it's regional.

    On the other hand my mother gave it up over 50 years ago on account of riding into the side of a van that pulled out on her on Corporation Street in Rotherham.
  8. CrinklyLion

    CrinklyLion Guest

    Which is from https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/h...commuter-cycling-to-reap-the-benefits.234820/ - that was a thread that didn't particularly engage with the question of gender.
    Dogtrousers likes this.
  9. Drago

    Drago Soiler of Y fronts

    The Oval Office
    That's interesting Mr Trousers, but George University is claiming that 75% (exactly?) Of cyclists are male. He makes no mention of mileage or journey stats betwixt the genders.
    Dogtrousers likes this.
  10. Julia9054

    Julia9054 Veteran

    Hi George
    You may find this article interesting
    It is linked on the stats link that @Dogtrousers provided but I thought I would pick it out. Looking at the breakdown by gender on @CrinklyLion 's link, i was struck by (apart from the can't ride a bike thing) how similar the percentages are for men and women when asked what puts them off.
    The cycling uk article looks at how aspects of women's lives may be different to men's lives and how that may affect their choices.
    I also think it's worth considering the difference between cycling for transport, cycling as a family leisure activity and cycling as a hobby. I wonder what the gender breakdown is for each of these?
  11. mjr

    mjr Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next

    I think those factors aren't so much contributing as consequential.
    Drago likes this.
  12. Drago

    Drago Soiler of Y fronts

    The Oval Office
    Surely most of the factors cited by George University also apply to blokes who don't cycle?
    raleighnut and Milzy like this.
  13. CrinklyLion

    CrinklyLion Guest

    Not what again? Another thread about gender and cycling or another stoodent hoping that we'll write their dissertation for 'em?

    Both of those, of course, are reasons that I signposted the couple of recent, relevant to the question, discussions that I was aware of. If anyone has anything they feel is useful or new or whatever they can add their thoughts if they want.
  14. Can I ask that men for once step back and let the actual women here answer? It's okay just to listen sometimes.
    smutchin, Alan O, raleighnut and 8 others like this.
  15. Drago

    Drago Soiler of Y fronts

    The Oval Office
    That's sexist. Men can have valid insights into this matter.
    mjr likes this.
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