Cycling family member encourages cycling

  • Soort:Nieuws Fietsberaad
  • Datum:12-04-2011

When someone in the family cycles, that encourages the others to cycle as well. That is apparent from a long-term study in Graz (Austria) into factors affecting to behaviour modification.

For this study people were interviewed twice, in 2005 and in 2009. The study focused on ascertaining whether people had begun to cycle more or less in that period, and particularly why. The study reveals a positive trend. More people have started cycling and less have stopped. Scientists uncovered a certain connection between bicycle use, the built-up and social environment and personal attitude. For instance, among new cyclists more people felt you can leave your bike at your front door without too much risk, and a bicycle does not prevent you from carrying luggage.
A major motivator turns out to be the family. When someone else in the family cycles, this clearly works as a role model. The scientists also draw the conclusion that many more people benefit from investments in cycling than merely the numbers to be derived from the modal split. In Graz the modal split is 14 to 16%, but actually over two-thirds of the population cycles at least 1 to 3 times a month in summer.
In general the scientists state that – in order to obtain behaviour modification – the practical advantages of cycling should be emphasised, such as the absence of parking problems and short connections. It helps if the infrastructure joins in by means of bicycle-friendly traffic light regimes, short-cuts et cetera. Influence by family members may be harder to translate into interventions, but authorities may focus on the work/school environment.

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Cycling family member encourages cycling

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