Fear Of Bicycles

The fear of bicycles is known as Cyclophobia. Many people never learn to ride bikes when they are children, and they develop a phobia about them. However, this is not the only reason why Cyclophobia can occur…

Reasons For This Phobia

Cyclophobia is a response to intense and persistent fear of being around bicycles or riding a bicycle. For some, bicycles can be scary: people with hearing loss report feelings of panic when they are walking and bikes rush up alongside them. The elderly can also be easily startled by fast-moving bicycles, because they feel they might be hit by one and injured

Sometimes, televised competitions, such as the Tour de France, contribute to the fear of bicycles. Often, there are nasty accidents during this dangerous race, and the bikes travel at high speeds, sometime downhill. Bicycle riders have been badly hurt when crashes occur, and often one riders slip or misstep results in a chain reaction that causes many bikes to crash.

Other Triggers

For people with this phobia, going outside or to parks where bike paths are available to riders can be a scary experience. Some people with Cyclophobia will avoid certain areas and dislike driving on city roads where bicyclists share the street with vehicles. A prior accident involving bicycles can be a very powerful trigger for this phobia.

Often, childhood memories can cause phobias: remembering the stress and difficulty of trying to ride a bicycle can result in a life-long phobia. Some children are not very coordinated, and they have more trouble mastering the art of riding a bike. Falling from a bicycle, or feelings of terror when they bike won’t brake properly while going downhill, can leave bitter memories that cause physical symptoms.

Symptoms & Treatment

The symptoms of this phobia include classic panic attack symptoms, such as dizziness, headaches, and feelings of anxiety and tension. In extreme cases, the ability to enjoy a normal life will be affected by Cyclophobia. If the person with this phobia is a parent, they may be unwilling to teach their children basic bicycle safety skills and other things most children need to learn in order to ride a bicycle on their own. As well, they may avoid social and group activities in places were bikes are ridden.

Avoiding bicycles is almost impossible. A person with this phobia should examine the deeper reasons why they have come to fear this practical, “green” form of transportation If childhood memories or a previous bad experience are the catalysts for this phobia, therapy can ease symptoms and panic treatment may allow for a lot of progress in coping with the problem. In time, riding a bike or being around bicycles can be a realistic goal.

The fear of bicycles is also referred to as:

  • bike phobia
  • bicycle fear
  • fear of bikes
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