Introduction: Cycling can be an enjoyable way to meet physical activity recommendations and is suitable for older people; however cycling participation by older Australians is low. This qualitative study explored motivators, enablers, and barriers to cycling among older people through an age-targeted cycling promotion program.
Methods: Seventeen adults who aged 50-75 years participated in a 12-week cycling promotion program which included a cycling skills course, mentor, and resource pack. Semistructured interviews at the beginning and end of the program explored motivators, enablers, and barriers to cycling.
Results: Fitness and recreation were the primary motivators for cycling. The biggest barrier was fear of cars and traffic, and the cycling skills course was the most important enabler for improving participants' confidence. Reported outcomes from cycling included improved quality of life (better mental health, social benefit, and empowerment) and improved physical health.
Conclusions: A simple cycling program increased cycling participation among older people. This work confirms the importance of improving confidence in this age group through a skills course, mentors, and maps and highlights additional strategies for promoting cycling, such as ongoing improvement to infrastructure and advertising.