By Charles Pekow — Cycling can improve life and achieve equality for many groups of people, an academic review found. It does much more than provide recreation, exercise, and transportation: Cycling empowers and improves the health of women, improves mental and physical skills of people with disabilities, improves quality of life for different racial groups, and inhibits discrimination against older folks.
So concluded scholars from three American universities in a presentation given at the International Academic Forum Conference on Educational Research and Innovation 2022.
“A Case for the Bicycle: How Cycling Can Promote Equality” points to studies that made the case and provides examples:
- A program that gave bicycles to schoolgirls decreased absenteeism and tardiness because it got them to school on-time and safety.
- Some children with autism or Down Syndrome have trouble with balance. Learning to ride a bike can help them overcome this problem, but more research is necessary in this area.
- People with cognitive and physical challenges can improve their quality of life and health if given the proper training and adaptive bicycles (handcycles, tandems, incumbents).
- There are no reasons why capable senior citizens can’t enjoy a ride, should a suitable vehicle be available. Some may need e-bikes. Trishaw bikes can carry passengers and use motors to assist.
The paper lists organizations that can provide resources to enable bicycling among diverse groups. Find it at https://papers.iafor.org/submission63130/