How to Bike With Disabilities, Discrimination, and Difference

Some of the most intimidating barriers to enjoying cycling have less to do with non-existent bike lanes and hulking SUVs, and more to do with the kinds of bodies our cycling culture is built to suit — and in a new online speaker series, 13 riders shared stories of how disability, discrimination, and differences have shaped the way they ride.

Organized by avid long-distance cyclist Annalisa van den Bergh, the “Cycling With” Summit brought together speakers who ride bikes with — and not always despite — disabilities, body differences, and discriminatory barriers that often place them outside the dominant stereotype of a person who rides. Van Den Bergh herself has Type 1 diabetes — a condition whose management she describes as “virtually a full-time job” that can make biking a challenge — and she wanted to make space for others to hear the stories cyclists whose experiences aren’t often the focus of cycling advocacy.