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Why Cycling Isn’t for Everyone

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A bicycle rider crossing rocky terrain at sunset. Photo: Submitted by Denise Nelson

Cycling has become a worldwide phenomenon that even smaller countries are trying to grow more accustomed to. Cycling is an amazing way to experience nature, the outdoors, and keep the planet healthy and green. It is eco-friendly and a great way to exercise, since cycling has many benefits.

There are some people out there, who just aren’t interested in cycling. There are multiple reasons as to why they don’t want to cycle, but cycling isn’t for everyone and they prefer other forms of transportation and recreation.

The health benefits of cycling. Graphic submitted by Denise Nelson
The health benefits of cycling. Graphic submitted by Denise Nelson

The Barriers: There are many inclinations as to why people refuse to participate in biking in their cities or towns. There are various differences in all cities across the world that cause people to hesitate when it comes to cycling.

A common misconception about cycling is that traffic makes roads unsafe. However, The roads are safer than the perceived thought or fear that people have.  Graphic submitted by Denise Nelson
A common misconception about cycling is that traffic makes roads unsafe. However, The roads are safer than the perceived thought or fear that people have. Graphic submitted by Denise Nelson

Traffic Makes Roads Unsafe: The idea behind this is that the perception of the roadways is too dangerous to travel on. And that drivers are reckless and not considerate of cyclists. There’s also the lack of understand turn signals for cyclists and drivers.

This isn’t necessarily true. The roads are safer than the perceived thought or fear that people have. Their idea of safety is held to a much higher standard than they view riding a bike on the roadways. There is also the problem with complicated roadways that make it dangerous for anything other than cars to use.

Not Many Places for Cyclists: While there are plenty of off-road trails, sidewalks, bike lanes, and hiking trails, there aren’t many cycling paths. If there were more cycling paths away from traffic and a safe place for cyclists to ride, there might be an increase in cycling because of the perceived safety and reduced risk of being on a cycling path away from traffic.

Faulty Services: Bike racks and bike parking devices tend to be unmaintained or have had many thefts in the area. This causes people to look at the vandalism caused to the bike racks and parking areas, which in turn make people avoid riding a bike.

If the area where you leave you bike looks unsafe, unmaintained, abandoned, or broken, you’re not going to feel very safe with leaving your bike in that area. If that’s the area you need to be in, you’ll find an alternate route to get to that area without a bike.

The Perception of Extreme Activity: The idea is that we perceive cycling as an extreme sport. In order to cycle, we have to be in the best fitness shape of our life with a huge amount of stamina and a really expensive bike. In reality, you can cycle around your neighborhood in your normal clothes on your normal bike.

Cycling can be an extreme sport, and it is, but it’s not for everyone. Doing it as a hobby and getting out there to try it is important. It’s a great benefit to you and the community for you to bike. It saves you money, produces money in the economy, and creates a greener environment.

By Denise Nelson

Denise Nelson is a mountain biker who enjoys cross-country biking all around the world. She worked as a trainer for six years before becoming a co-founder of a private biking lessons school to teach people how to properly train and ride bikes to prepare them for cross-country and any activities they want to indulge in. She is also a co-founder of MountainBikeEZ.

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