Women only club rides

Anything relating to the clubs associated with Cycling UK
BrawleyS
Posts: 1
Joined: 3 May 2024, 9:53am

Women only club rides

Post by BrawleyS »

My club would like to increase the number of female members.

One idea is the introduction of women only rides, led by a woman.

We have a concern that this move might result in the migration of some of our current female members from mixed rides to the women only rides.

Does any club with female only rides have evidence to support this or not?
Carlton green
Posts: 3918
Joined: 22 Jun 2019, 12:27pm

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Carlton green »

BrawleyS wrote: 3 May 2024, 10:13am My club would like to increase the number of female members.

One idea is the introduction of women only rides, led by a woman.

We have a concern that this move might result in the migration of some of our current female members from mixed rides to the women only rides.

Does any club with female only rides have evidence to support this or not?
I wish you luck with the idea, or rather with encouraging more women to cycle. As for women migrating to a single sex group that is, IMHO, a bit of a selfish concern - of which I’m also guilty. To my mind women joining in with us blokes usually improves group dynamics, it’d be sad to loose them to a competing group but if that’s what they’d prefer … doing the right thing isn’t always easy.
Don’t fret, it’s OK to: ride a simple old bike; ride slowly, walk, rest and admire the view; ride off-road; ride in your raincoat; ride by yourself; ride in the dark; and ride one hundred yards or one hundred miles. Your bike and your choices to suit you.
Nearholmer
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Joined: 26 Mar 2022, 7:13am

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Nearholmer »

Try contacting this group, which is the one I am a member of https://www.bcgmk.com/

It’s a big group, very inclusive, and has had a lot of success in increasing participation by women, using women-only rides as part of that strategy. So far as I understand, introducing the women-only rides didn’t adversely impact the number of women participating in the other rides, but committee members will know for sure and probably have the stats.

The events calendar tends to get fully loaded on a rolling basis 7-10 days in advance, so the fact that it doesn’t contain any women-only rides at the moment only tells you that there isn’t one this week.
slowster
Moderator
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Joined: 7 Jul 2017, 10:37am

Re: Women only club rides

Post by slowster »

Inappropriate off-topic posts about clubs' policies on helmet wearing have been removed.
Carlton green
Posts: 3918
Joined: 22 Jun 2019, 12:27pm

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Carlton green »

Nearholmer wrote: 3 May 2024, 4:21pm Try contacting this group, which is the one I am a member of https://www.bcgmk.com/

It’s a big group, very inclusive, and has had a lot of success in increasing participation by women, using women-only rides as part of that strategy. So far as I understand, introducing the women-only rides didn’t adversely impact the number of women participating in the other rides, but committee members will know for sure and probably have the stats.

The events calendar tends to get fully loaded on a rolling basis 7-10 days in advance, so the fact that it doesn’t contain any women-only rides at the moment only tells you that there isn’t one this week.
Could I ask that you correct your post please or that a mod do it for you (just remove “very inclusive”). The group is not “inclusive” and pointing out the reason why it isn’t has seen this thread derailed.

Obviously once yours is corrected I’ll delete my post … or a mod can do it for me. Thank you.
Don’t fret, it’s OK to: ride a simple old bike; ride slowly, walk, rest and admire the view; ride off-road; ride in your raincoat; ride by yourself; ride in the dark; and ride one hundred yards or one hundred miles. Your bike and your choices to suit you.
Nearholmer
Posts: 4429
Joined: 26 Mar 2022, 7:13am

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Nearholmer »

You can, and have asked, but I don’t intend to change what I wrote, because I stand by what I said: the group has grown and flourished because it has a very overtly, very inclusive ethos.

As a BTW, if there is, yet again, to be a helmet debate, it would probably best be moved to the “helmet arguments” sub-forum, where it won’t get in the way of the substance of what the OP asked about. If it is, I won’t follow it, because it’s all been said before, and too quickly descends into acrimony.
Jdsk
Posts: 26139
Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Jdsk »

Nearholmer wrote: 3 May 2024, 4:21pm Try contacting this group, which is the one I am a member of https://www.bcgmk.com/

It’s a big group, very inclusive, and has had a lot of success in increasing participation by women, using women-only rides as part of that strategy. So far as I understand, introducing the women-only rides didn’t adversely impact the number of women participating in the other rides, but committee members will know for sure and probably have the stats.
...
That's good to hear.

Do any other groups have experiences to share?

Thanks

Jonathan
mattheus
Posts: 5306
Joined: 29 Dec 2008, 12:57pm
Location: Western Europe

Re: Women only club rides

Post by mattheus »

Nearholmer wrote: 4 May 2024, 8:15am You can, and have asked, but I don’t intend to change what I wrote, because I stand by what I said: the group has grown and flourished because it has a very overtly, very inclusive ethos.
How inclusive is "very inclusive" ? From my standpoint, I belong to a club* that has no restrictions on membership (not even age), and does NOT impose clothing restrictions on our riders - so we would seem to be more inclusive than the one you are promoting.

There is a 2ry question about causation here. If you start with a very diverse cohort, it doesn't need to promote an "inclusive ethos", it will inevitably attract groups that are under-represented in the average club.

*It's a local club i.e. the focus is on local rides/events. I also belong to two national clubs that are more inclusive than the one you cited.
PH
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Joined: 21 Jan 2007, 12:31am
Location: Derby
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Re: Women only club rides

Post by PH »

Any additional ride will attract some who would have participated in the original and won't be able to join both. I think that's inevitable, it would be the same if the choice was offered from the same club or another, peoples time and inclination aren't limitless, there's always choices to be made.
If your club deems there's a demand for a type of ride it isn't currently offering, and has the volunteers wishing to organise and run them, then the fear of those rides detracting from others isn't a reason to not do it. The things to be aiming for IMO are those that best integrate them and encourage the idea that all the activities are part of the same club and not competing elements within it. I know that's easier said than done , but one of the ways to promote it is to encourage some of those participating in the original rides to support the new ones, so there's at least some crossover.
I've made no mention of the type of additional ride, in the context of the question, I don't think it maters. Clubs evolve, some new things come along and some once popular die out. That won't suit everyone of course, it's OK for members and organisers to promote those activities they're particularly keen on, but that shouldn't be by restricting others.
Nearholmer
Posts: 4429
Joined: 26 Mar 2022, 7:13am

Re: Women only club rides

Post by Nearholmer »

There is a 2ry question about causation here. If you start with a very diverse cohort, it doesn't need to promote an "inclusive ethos", it will inevitably attract groups that are under-represented in the average club.
It was started by a not notably diverse collective: two middle-aged white blokes. They took it to 300 members in four years, and it still has hundreds of members and in a busy week in summer will turn out c15 rides each week, some of which get split into two because they are over-subscribed.

The “exam question” in this thread is about women-only rides, and the group has used them to increase participation. My recommendation to contact them about that stands. If you want to contact them about helmet policy, you are equally able to do that.
freeflow
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Joined: 29 Aug 2011, 1:54pm

Re: Women only club rides

Post by freeflow »

This may be a politically incorrect viewpoint but if you want to increase the number of women joining in rides, your first step should be to censure the inevitable macho d**kheadiness that exists and pervades every activity that your club runs. Its nobody's fault. Its just that such attitudes find cycling clubs fertile ground to flourish.
mattheus
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Joined: 29 Dec 2008, 12:57pm
Location: Western Europe

Re: Women only club rides

Post by mattheus »

freeflow wrote: 7 May 2024, 12:08pm ...
if you want to increase the number of women joining in rides, your first step should be to censure the inevitable macho d**kheadiness that exists and pervades every activity that your club runs.
Do you not think that limits MALE participation too?
mattheus
Posts: 5306
Joined: 29 Dec 2008, 12:57pm
Location: Western Europe

Re: Women only club rides

Post by mattheus »

Nearholmer wrote: 7 May 2024, 10:22am
There is a 2ry question about causation here. If you start with a very diverse cohort, it doesn't need to promote an "inclusive ethos", it will inevitably attract groups that are under-represented in the average club.
It was started by a not notably diverse collective: two middle-aged white blokes.
Then they did very well to lead women-only rides, thus leading to increased participation. Chapeau sirs!
freeflow
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Joined: 29 Aug 2011, 1:54pm

Re: Women only club rides

Post by freeflow »

Do you not think that limits MALE participation too?
Of course. But the question was about Women riders.
mattheus
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Joined: 29 Dec 2008, 12:57pm
Location: Western Europe

Re: Women only club rides

Post by mattheus »

freeflow wrote: 7 May 2024, 1:05pm
Do you not think that limits MALE participation too?
Of course. But the question was about Women riders.
Yes, fair point :D

I didn't intend to criticise the point you made; it was more that I wanted to encourage wider thinking on this complex problem. When you talk to women about the kind of behaviours that discourage participation, it turns out there is a huge overlap with the behaviours that discourage ALL KINDS of potential new members.

---------------------------
I'd also like to ask this question (in the light of some earlier posts) - in a rhetorical fashion, hopefully to stimulate debate:

Would a club that is entirely wealthy white christian straight women in the 35-55 age group be considered "inclusive"?
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