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Public transit users take 30 percent more steps and spend roughly eight more minutes walking each day than drivers.

When women ride, others follow

Have you heard? The ladies of the world are an indicator species. It has such a nice ring to it, don’t you agree? So … scientific.

According to a Tribune article circulating on the bike blogs and social media postings, if you make women feel safe and capable while biking, everyone else will follow.

src=http://www.activetrans.org/sites/default/files/women.jpgMyself and other women cyclists I know bike because it is faster and more convenient. It's good exercise, and we have support from friends who also commute, race or work on their bicycle.

But I'm sure many more women would join us if they felt safer while riding.

Indeed, many experts agree that bike facilities separated from motor vehicle traffic provide a great way to close the gender gap in cycling.

Active Trans, the City of Chicago and other municipalities and organizations all are trying to make easy biking a reality and make biking a real option for us “trend setting” women.

This support is happening in cities around the nation with female-centric bike maintenance and education, as well as other programs created to make sure the “indicator species” is happy and comfortable getting on bikes – whether in heels or clipless shoes.

By the way, the women-focused community programs mentioned by Tribune reporter Julie Deardorff in Portland are happening here at Humboldt Park’s West Town Bikes by me and other volunteers every Wednesday.