The people have spoken, and they like ‘Everyday Biking’

April 01, 2015

Michael Andersen, Green Lane Project staff writer


Portland, Oregon.

When change happens, one of the things that keeps it rolling is that we find new ways to talk about it.

Today in the United States, as in much of the developed world, people are riding bikes more often. And a lot of the growth seems to come from a particular type of biking: the kind you do regularly, mostly for transportation, without thinking much about it.

Bike commuting keeps rising, but this isn't just about going to work and back. Lifestyle comfort, cruiser and fitness hybrid bikes are driving growth in bike sales, but this isn't just about comfort or fitness.

So what should we call it?

Here at PeopleForBikes, one of the ways we enable change is by helping establish, popularize and standardize language that describes the ways Americans use bikes. So last year, we put a question to a bunch of our closest friends (that'd be our million-voice mailing list, plus a lot of folks not on the list for good measure). Here's what we asked:

Imagine you’re rolling out on your bike right from your garage—no spandex involved, you’re wearing normal, everyday clothes.

You’re heading somewhere you need to go—like work, a meeting, or the grocery store. This might be part of your daily routine, or maybe you’re in the mood to run errands or get from point A to point B by bike, because it’s gorgeous outside.

This trip isn’t about exercise. You’ve got a destination in mind, and the bike’s the way you get there…

We threw out a few suggestions for what that might be called, and asked people to pick their favorite. According to the official results, agreement was overwhelming:

So from here on, we'll be referring to this activity as "Everyday Biking." Thanks for helping us find good language for this, everyone. Now, if you'll excuse us, we need to go grab some lunch.

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