How Popular Is Cycling in the US?

Every sport varies in its popularity and some sports are actually recreational activities for others. Sports like cycling are very popular in the world, but not in all parts of the world. For example, most European countries are very fond of cycling and use it as anything from a method of transportation to a recreational activity, to a hobby. Some compete, on an amateur and professional level, and notably more so than in the US.

That begs the question, how popular is this great sport in the US? Not as popular as it should be but it is getting better, so let us take a closer look.

Cycling in the US Was Bad

Cycling in the US was a really poor choice for most of the time, prior to 2020, at least in most large cities. 

Cycling has to be accommodated by the infrastructure, otherwise you end up in very unsafe conditions and only the brave and the ones who have cycled a lot will dare go into traffic. There is literally nothing separating them from the cars and trucks that are overtaking them in dangerous places all the time.

This is one of the major problems in the US and in most surveys, people said that they would love to cycle more, but they simply don’t feel safe in traffic, which is understandable, particularly in a country where primarily, most of transportation is done with cars and trucks.

A cycling culture is something that needs to be nurtured and it all starts with the infrastructure.

COVID – A Cyclist’s Best Friend

The global pandemic caused by the Covid-19 virus changed a lot about the world. We saw that we can do a lot in a short period of time, should we want to, of course. When pushed, authorities were able to organize many things in a short amount of time.

In some cities like Boston, traffic cones were used to make trial bicycle lanes. Given the boom of bicycle sales during the year, cycling in larger cities exploded, including the US. After the pandemic loosened its grip a bit, Boston made the trial lanes permanent, replacing the cones with bollards. 

Other large cities have seen a gradual increase in cyclist percentage since the 1990s, mainly commuters, but that is a good sign. The more commuters, the more attention will be paid to the infrastructure.

And the Future?

Cycling is seemingly on the rise in the US and given enough time, the percentage numbers of commuters in the US cities will rival those of European countries. All that is left is to support the cyclists with the right infrastructure and clear and concise guidelines about cycling in traffic.

Next post Do Stationary Bikes Help You With Training?