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National Bike Month

Bicycling is not just for children. Adults, young and old, are encouraged to ride bicycles as often as possible.

Around the world, bicycles are still an important mode of transportation, especially in areas where cars are too expensive and not available to large segments of the population. In many countries, bicycles outnumber cars by a wide margin and are used for extensively for travel and business.

Since 1956, May has been National Bike Month in the United States. It celebrates the positive aspects of cycling in terms of riding bikes for pleasure, exercise, health related benefits, and environmental preservation. It also focuses on bicycle safety and how individuals can help put a spotlight on the many benefits of riding bicycles.

Organizations such as the League of American Bicyclists, the Alliance for Biking and Walking, National Bicycle Greenway, The USA Cycling Development Foundation, Bikes Belong, People For Bikes, and the Adventure Cycling Association sponsor and promote bicycling activities around the country.

There are also local organizations in most states that sponsor events that encourage people to get out of their cars and bicycle to work and other destinations. Bicycling saves gas, helps the environment, and is a good way to enjoy the outdoors while getting much needed exercise.

One of the most discouraging aspects of riding bikes in the city is that there is an inadequate amount of bicycle lanes and places to park, but this is being addressed. In recent years, many cities and municipalities have added bicycle lanes to major streets and roadways and bicycle stalls and parking areas are being installed at public buildings, libraries, malls, parks, and other locations.

Since most people drive to get to work, some companies are offering incentives to employees who ride their bikes to and from work. This is great for people who live within a range of one to five miles from their jobs.

Bicycle safety is also addressed during National Bike Month. Laws have been passed in recent years to help bicyclists on streets and sidewalks. One of the most important laws makes it mandatory for all cyclists, children and adults, to wear helmets while riding their bicycles.

How can you celebrate National Bike Month?

  • Go bike riding for exercise or pleasure.
  • Ride your bike to work.
  • Donate to cycling clubs.
  • Join a bike riding club.
  • Organize bike riding events.
  • Encourage your children to ride their bikes.
  • Teach others about the benefits of bike riding.
  • Talk to employers and employees about the benefits of riding bikes to work.

Bicycling is making a comeback in the United States, especially in cities and suburbs that are making it easier for cyclists to ride in. Encourage your elected officials to help create bicycle safety programs for children and to make bicycling a part of their political agenda.

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