Getting more women to ride bikes

Suja+Lowenthal+bike.jpgI watched a bicyclist get hit by a car today in Westwood Village, right in front of me. He walked away, with help. But he caused himself some pain (and all the witnesses a scary moment) by trying to speed from behind past a car turning right on a green light. So I had bike riders on my mind when I found a story on a big push tomorrow to get more more women riding, featuring Long Beach Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal. Yes, again with Long Beach and the bikes — go figure. From ZevWeb:

On Wednesday, February 8, a coalition of women cycling advocates is set to gather in Long Beach to announce an ambitious goal: doubling the number of female bicyclists on Southern California streets within five years.

The initiative is led by a relatively new organization, Women on Bikes SoCal, which seeks to promote the “joy, beauty and benefits of bicycling for women.” Its campaign includes establishing the nation’s first women-only scholarship program for League Certified Bike Safety Instructors. (Information on supporting the initiative is here.)


On a recent bicycle tour of her city, which is noted for its large and growing network of bike-friendly amenities, Lowenthal made it clear that dressing like Lance Armstrong—and riding like a Tour de France champion—are not required to join the cycling revolution.

“I want to wear my heels. I want to do all sorts of kinds of things that are about regular lifestyle,” Lowenthal said. “You don’t have to be the 50-mile-a week-spandex athlete. You can move about with your children and make it a very family-oriented, healthy, active lifestyle.”

Photo of Lowenthal: Allan Crawford/Women on Bikes SoCal

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