Female cyclists less likely to be injured than men as they take fewer risks

Study initially intended to examine effect of mandatory helment law but researchers said the results were 'striking'

Rose Troup Buchanan
Wednesday 11 November 2015 23:31
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Three quarters of those injured in the Canadian study were men
Three quarters of those injured in the Canadian study were men

Female cyclists have fewer accidents than male bike riders because they take fewer risks, new research from Canada suggests.

The Toronto University study, which intended to examine the effect of a new mandatory helmet law, found over three quarters of injured cyclists were men and that gender was a more consistent variable than whether those injured wore helmets or other protective gear.

Researchers suggested in the “striking” joint study with the University of British Columbia women were less likely to be injured than men because they take fewer risks on a bike.

"Women were 50 per cent less likely to be injured to any body region and 60 per cent less likely when we were considering head injuries," study author Jessica Dennis told CBS News.

The report, published in the British Medical Journal, said lawmakers should examine ways to encourage cyclists to think more like women. "These choices women are making, we can promote them," said Ms Dennis.

The study examined the number of hospitalisations between 2006 and 2011, finding of the 3,690 people admitted to hospital for bicycling injuries among youths and adults, 76 per cent were men.

In the UK almost 3,500 people are injured or killed cycling on Britain’s roads every year. The Department of Transportation warned of a 40 per cent rise in the past five years, as increasing numbers use a bike to commute on the UK’s busy roads.

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