Cycle Sisters is an award-winning charity which aims to inspire and support Muslim women to cycle. Much of their work focuses on providing regular group rides and on tackling stereotypes to make cycling more inclusive. In this Camcycle meeting, trustee Khadijah Zaidi explains what they do and how they do it, and shares advice on the things other cycling groups can do to get different communities involved in riding.
The second part of the meeting includes a presentation by representatives from Coldhams Lane Romsey Residents’ Association who explain why they would like to reduce motor traffic on their street and discuss ideas for a modal filter.
The next Camcycle meeting will be held online on Tuesday 3 November, when we’ll chat with Dave Walker – cycling cartoonist and founder of the Budget Cycling website. Find out more about this and other Camcycle events on our events page.
Khadijah’s top tips for inclusive cycling groups
1) Use positive imagery and language – show different people on different types of bikes and in different clothing. Use clear language avoiding technical jargon to communicate that cycling is something anyone can do. This shows people that they are welcome in these groups no matter what type of background they come from.
2) Offer a variety of rides – include rides suitable for beginners or those on different types of cycles as well as more challenging rides. Think about different lengths and timings of group rides. Shorter rides are more welcoming for those with childcare responsibilities for example, who may not be able to spend a whole weekend day riding.
3) Where possible, stop at cafés rather than pubs to include everyone. Think about mixing up the type of places you go for a rest break, so that different communities feel welcome on your rides.
4) As well as lobbying councils for infrastructure changes, focus on their provision of cycle training and provision of accessible group rides. The more cycle training there is out there, the more successful an area will be at getting different types of people to cycle.
5) Actively engage in outreach to local community groups. Ask questions about what would help people start cycling and tell them what you do – they might not be aware of your work or events.
Links to more information
Find more information about Cycle Sisters on their website, including stories from Muslim women who have started cycling, and details of Cycle Sisters groups and projects.
Cycle Sisters on video
Cycling UK made a wonderful video about Cycle Sisters (shown in Khadijah’s presentation) and you can find films about ride routes and a recent BBC interview on the Cycle Sisters YouTube channel.
Coldhams Lane Romsey Residents’ Association
You can watch the video Paula played during her presentation on YouTube and find out more about the Coldhams Lane Romsey Residents’ Association on their facebook page and website.
Find out more information on upcoming Camcycle meetings and social events.