May is National Bike Month — and tomorrow, May 17, is Bike to Work Day.
Founded in 1956 by the League of American Bicyclists, Bike to Work Day is a cherished part of National Bike Month. Join commuters across the country as they bicycle their way to work, to school, shopping, and more. Register online and you can win prizes at one of the 70+ pit stops in the DC area. If you don’t have a bike, consider taking the Metro, walking, or borrowing a bike from a friend or rental facility. If you do bike, be sure to follow all traffic laws, ride safely, and wear a helmet.
Why bicycle? There are a lot of reasons to ride a bike, particularly if you live in the city:
Bike for the planet. For every mile you choose to bike rather than drive, you prevent the creation of almost 2 lbs of air pollutants.
Bike for the economy. Bike and pedestrian projects in the DC area have created 11-14 jobs per million dollars spent, versus just 7 jobs for a conventional roadway project.
Bike to save space. At least 10 bicycles — and their riders — can fit in the space of just one car.
Bike for your health. Cycling, even at a leisurely pace, can burn 300 calories an hour!
A quick look at Academic Search Premier with the keywords “bicycle” and “benefits” turns up these articles:
Dunlap, L. (2012). Get up and go: Pedaling through your morning drive. Mobility Forum: The Journal of the Air Mobility Command’s Magazine, 21(1), 29-30.
Redgewell, S. (2010). My bicycle makes me free, independent, and fit. Nursing Standard, 24(36), 28.
Webb, C. (2008). Pedal power. New Internationalist, 22-25.
Learn more about cycling in the DC area from the DC Department of Transportation and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association. For maps, visit the DDOT website, Capital Bikeshare, or the Washington Area Bicyclist Association.
For additional information on bicycles and bicycling, visit the library and peruse our National Bike Month display on the first floor. Safe riding!