Laura Bustos teaches women to ride bikes in Mexico City

Americas Now

Riding a bike in Mexico City can be extremely dangerous especially if you’re a first time bike rider, and a woman. Weaving in between cars, congested streets and five hours of traffic jams every day can seem intimidating, but one woman who runs a local nonprofit hopes to fix that.

According to a 2012 study by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, at least 80 percent of the bicyclists in Mexico City are males. Many women in Mexico City grew up believing that riding a bicycle is a male activity, and many parents insist it is too dangerous for women to ride.

Laura Bustos has been tackling this issue through her organization Te enseño a andar en bici, “I Teach You How to Ride a Bike”, which aims to teach and promote bike riding among women of all ages. She teaches women to ride bikes on weekends on some of the capital’s main streets thanks to a five-year-old policy by the city’s mayor that designated Sunday mornings for joggers and bicyclists.

Throughways are shut down and cyclists are allowed to the ride leisurely through the street, allowing Bustos to teach more bike newbies. In accordance with the words of American suffragette, Susan B. Anthony, who once said “the bicycle has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world”, Bustos is this week’s Game Changer.