Wisconsin-based Trek Bicycle is creating a collective global movement encouraging people to ride a bike at least one trip a week.

The movement — #GoByBike — hopes to inspire 10 million trips. “While society is still social distancing, there's never been a better time to support climate action and form new habits, inspiring everyone to choose a bike trip over a car trip as often as possible,” the company said in a press statement.

Air pollution contributes to 7 million deaths a year globally, according to the World Health Organization. But collective action can drive change.

During a three-week lockdown period this year, cities that suffer from the world's worst air pollution saw reductions up to 60 percent from the previous year. Replacing car, bus, train or subway trips with bike trips can reduce emissions, affecting the environment in a positive way.

"Now is the time to adjust our behaviors for the better and co-design a new normal that will have lasting impact on our people and planet," said Trek Bicycle president John Burke. “This is bigger than just an environmental crisis  — it's a health crisis and, in many places, a congestion crisis, which will only continue to get worse as people opt to drive personal cars more in an effort to avoid public transportation and social distance."

In a recent national survey conducted by Trek, 42 percent of American bike owners said they are riding to get out of the house and have fun during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey found that 85 percent of Americans perceive cycling as safer than public transportation while social distancing.

Other key findings 0f the study include:

  • Amid COVID-19
    • Americans would prefer to ride bikes when they travel within 5 miles.
    • Ninety percent included biking among their top 3 primary modes of transportation.
    • Fourteen percent ride bikes replace public transportation.
  • Cycling supports mental health during the current environment
    • Sixty-three present of responders said bike riding helps to relieve stress/anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Twenty-seven percent of Americans who own a bike turn to biking for mental health and/or to de-stress
  • More Americans are turning to cycling for physical exercise
    • Forty-one percent of Americans feel exercise and fitness are the most important motivation to ride their bike during the pandemic
    • Thirty-eight percent of Americans who own a bike use cycling as their source of exercise.

For more information about the survey and the results, please visit blog.trekbikes.com.

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