Women & Bicycles


Women & Bicycles

Women & Bicycles is WABA's outreach program designed to get more women in the D.C. area on bikes. It is based on 10 Roll Models, selected by WABA, reaching out to 10 women in their personal networks who don't bike to encourage and inspire them to ride for transportation. For specifics on the program, scroll down.

Women & Bicycles is generously supported by the League of American Bicycles and WABA's donors.

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Sign up to receive email updates about WABA's Women & Bicycles program. Emails are sent only a few times a month (at most). You can unsubscribe at any time.

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Meetups, hosted by Roll Models, are the first stage of Women & Bicycles' community-based approach to getting women on bikes. Meetups are informal, relaxed discussions held at a location selected by a Roll Model for their 10 mentees. At a meetup, there's plenty of time to socialize, but Roll Models are tasked with moving the conversation topic toward bikes. Roll Models facilitate discussions and share their knowledge and experience, while attendees are given an intimate, casual space to ask questions that they might otherwise keep to themselves. Meetups are graciously sponsored by Chipotle (Women & Bicycles loves burritos!).

Rides and Workshops

Women & Bicycles Roll Models, their mentees, and anyone else interested in getting involved with the program are welcome to attend scheduled rides and workshops. Meetups are for Roll Models and their mentees, but rides and workshops are for everyone! Rides move at a slow pace and are intended to be skillshare opportunities. Workshops will be held throughout the region and are opportunities to explore specific issues. Rides and workshops are advertised on the Women & Bicycles Facebook group and added to the program's calendar.


The Women & Bicycles workbook, "The Ins and Outs of Bicycling," is the primary resource for the program. The workbook presents basic bike information and women-specific tips, addressing the different types of bicycles, explaining do-it-yourself maintenance, busting bike myths, and giving suggestions on how to make biking look good.

If you'd like a copy of the workbook or would like to plan your own Women & Bicyles-style meetup with friends and family, please fill out this request form. We'll send you a PDF version of the workbook and our facilitators' guide.

Get Involved

  • Read the WABA blog for updates on the program
  • Sign up via the form on the right to receive email updates about the program. Emails list upcoming events (which are also listed in the calendar below) and include safety tips and other useful information.
  • Join the Women & Bicycles Facebook group (you have to request an invite, but we're on it!). The group is designed to be a safe space to discuss issues relevant to biking as a woman in D.C., as well as provide a platform for women to connect socially.
  • Questions? Contact WABA Outreach Coordinator Nelle Pierson at (202) 518-0524 x202 or email nelle@waba.org.

See What Women & Bicycles Is Up To

Share your photos here! On Instagram, use the tag #womenbikedc

Upcoming Women & Bicycles Events


What is Women & Bicycles?

In the spring of 2013, WABA launched Women & Bicycles, an outreach and education program geared to get more women on bikes. Read the Washington Post on Women & Bicycles.

Why is getting more women on bikes a critical cause?

  • In 2012, women represented just 22.7 percent of cyclists on the road in D.C. According to DDOT, that’s a slight drop since 2011.
  • In Women on Wheels, April Streeter writes, “New bike commuters are overwhelmingly male. Data reviewed by researchers John Pucher and Ralph Buehler show that almost all of the recent growth in cycling in the united states recently can be attributed to men between 25 and 64 years old. Pucher and Buehler found that cycling rates are just holding steady for women, and have fallen sharply for children.”
  • Our women’s bicycling forum identified three top barriers for getting women on bikes: safety (fear, safety concerns, inexperience/confidence, harassment), logistics (facilities, time commitment, weather, gear, money), and perception (misconceptions, double standards, and professionalism).
  • WABA isn't the only group working to get more women on bikes! The League of American Bicyclists' Women Bike is a national program that encourages women and organizations to faciliate solutions in their own jurisdictions. Women Bike generously providedworking at a national level to encourage women to facilitate solutions on the local level.

How is WABA going to get more women on bikes through Women & Bicycles ?

  • Ten Roll Models will be selected to mentor women in their friend, family, church, and work groups.
  • Roll Models will invite their mentees to a series of bike meetups, group rides, and workshops that will mix practical advice on how to incorporate cycling into one’s lifestyle with low-key hanging out.
  • Non-participants will be kept abreast of the program, so they’ll learn more about the issues facing women on bikes and be inclined to encourage their friends and family to bike, regardless of gender.

There's enough evidence that not enough women in the D.C. area ride bikes. Instead of speculating further on what’s discouraging women from biking, we’ve created a program centered on peer-to-peer encouragement, information, and experience through events.

Want to learn more?

Check out the WABA Blog to read posts on Women & Bicycles. Join the Facebook group and sign up for the Women & Bicycles bulletin via the form above.

Do you have more questions about WABA's Women & Bicycles program? Contact WABA Outreach Coordinator Nelle Pierson at (202) 518-0524 x202 or email nelle@waba.org.


The Women & Bicycles program's 2013 funding comes from the generous donations of WABA members and a grant fromm Women Bike. Women Bike is the League of American Bicyclists' initiative to close the gender gap in bicycling in the United States. To learn more about the League and Women Bike, visit this page.




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