12 Reasons Why Do People Harass Cyclists?

Cyclists are a vulnerable group of people. The majority of them are just everyday folks trying to get from point A to point B without getting hit by a car. 

They have families, jobs and lives just like you and me. However, when they’re on their bikes, it seems that some people feel emboldened to harass them (and sometimes even assault them). 

This can happen for many reasons—some more legitimate than others:

Why Do People HATE Cyclists? – YouTube
Understanding the reasons behind harassment faced by cyclists can shed light on this issue and potentially lead to solutions.
Education and awareness about cycling and the rights of cyclists can help combat negative attitudes towards cyclists.
Creating a safer and more supportive environment for cyclists through infrastructure improvements and policy changes is crucial.
Promoting mutual respect and understanding between cyclists and drivers can contribute to a better coexistence on the road.
Addressing the barriers to cycling, such as safety concerns and lack of infrastructure, is important for encouraging more people to choose biking as a mode of transportation.


Another reason why people harass cyclists is because they are afraid of them. They think that the cyclist is a threat to their safety, their property, or even their lives.

For example, some drivers think that cyclists are a danger to themselves and other motorists. 

They believe that if a cyclist doesn’t obey traffic rules correctly, then he/she will cause an accident in which innocent drivers and passengers could be harmed or killed by them.

But in reality, when there is no bicycle-friendly infrastructure (bike lanes), it’s hard for cyclists not to break traffic law for their own safety! 

When there are no bike lanes on the road where you live or drive on every day (and this may be different depending on your city), then we all know that riding a bike can be dangerous without any protection against cars driving right next to us at high speeds (or faster). 

In situations like these where danger lurks around every corner while literally being inches away from death each time we cross over into another lane while trying not fall off our bikes; 

Breaking laws such as having stop signs/red lights while going up hills might seem like reasonable risks considering how much faster cars can go compared with us slow-moving cyclists! 

Because of this disparity between motor vehicles’ speed capabilities versus ours when operating two-wheeled vehicles – we feel justified taking those small chances in order stay safe out there despite what others might say about us breaking more than just one law today:)

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Revenge is a powerful motivator. Everyone knows that, but it’s worth repeating when it comes to cyclist harassment. Cyclists are seen as “easy targets.” 

They don’t typically have the same legal protection or physical ability as most drivers and pedestrians, so they’re more vulnerable than other groups on the road. 

This means that some people may have a grudge against cyclists—or even just a desire to get back at them for something they’ve done in the past.

Whether or not you agree with this type of revenge-motivated behavior (and we don’t), it does happen all too often on our roads. 

And if you know someone who has been injured by a cyclist or hurt by another person who rides bikes regularly, you can probably see why some people might want revenge against cyclists in general.

Revenge in moviesRetaliation or retribution portrayed in films, often involving complex and dramatic narratives.
Revenge in gamesThe act of seeking vengeance or payback in video games, sometimes driven by compelling storylines.
Revenge in real lifeInstances of individuals seeking personal retribution or reprisal against those who wronged them.
Revenge in literatureLiterary works that explore themes of revenge, showcasing characters driven by a desire for retribution.
Revenge in businessOccurrences of competitive retaliation or strategies employed by companies in response to perceived harm or injustice.


Boredom is a state of mind. It’s the feeling of being uninterested in the world around you, and it can be caused by lack of stimulation or emotional connection with your environment. 

This type of boredom isn’t necessarily bad it’s actually a natural human response to too much information, or life without any goals or purpose.

Cyclists can have their own reasons for riding bikes: getting exercise, enjoying the outdoors, exploring new places and these are all good reasons for biking! 

But if cyclists don’t enjoy riding bikes themselves (e.g., because they hate exercising), then they might end up feeling bored as well as frustrated by motorist harassment in general.

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Sexual Gratification

Sexual gratification is a powerful motivator, and it’s no surprise that some people harass cyclists because they want to see them or even catch them in compromising situations. 

These perverts will follow cyclists for miles, staring at their bodies as they ride along. 

They may even try to touch them when they think no one is looking. Thankfully, there are laws against stalking and sexual assault that protect cyclists from these types of behaviors.

Status Accrual

Status accrual is a reason why cyclists are harassed. The way cyclists are seen as a lower class, or how they’re considered fair game for harassment, is because of this status accrual. 

It has to do with the fact that cyclists have been deemed as more vulnerable than other road users, and thus deserve less respect.

Cyclists can avoid becoming victims of status accrual by wearing helmets and reflective clothing (if riding at night), so that drivers can easily see them on the road. 

Also, don’t let anyone tell you that it’s not safe to ride your bike! Do whatever makes you feel safe on the road and remember: safety isn’t just about avoiding being hit by cars; it’s also about avoiding harassment from pedestrians or other drivers who might think you’re an easy target due to your perceived vulnerability as a cyclist!

Brand NameDescription
AppleAchieving status through owning and displaying Apple products, associated with innovation and luxury.
RolexAcquiring status through owning a Rolex watch, symbolizing prestige and success in luxury timepieces.
Mercedes-BenzAttaining status through driving a Mercedes-Benz car, representing elegance and high social standing.
Louis VuittonGaining status through carrying Louis Vuitton accessories, synonymous with luxury and exclusivity.
Harvard UniversityEnhancing status by attending or being associated with Harvard University, a renowned Ivy League institution.

Attention Grabbing

When people are not getting the attention they want, they usually seek it from a different source. And in this case, cyclists are being harassed because they represent an easy target for attention-seeking individuals. 

Cyclists generally ride alone on open roads with no protection and have little chance of defending themselves against an attack by any potential harassers. 

In addition to that, most cyclists use their own bikes since most can’t afford a car (which makes them even more vulnerable).

Cyclists also have one of the lowest rates of injury and death compared to other forms of transportation like driving or riding public transportation. 

They are also less likely to be stopped by police officers who pull over motorists more frequently than cyclists because there are fewer laws regulating cycling behavior than there are regulating driving behavior.

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Greed is a powerful motivator, and people will do things to get more money. Cyclists are often an easy target for people who want to make a quick buck.

Examples of this include:

Police officers who stop cyclists and ask them if they have any drugs on them, or if they know where some drugs are hidden (the officer then takes the cyclist’s bike as “evidence” while he searches them).

Canvassers who offer people money in exchange for filling out a survey or giving up some personal information (then keeps the bicycle instead of giving it back).


Anger is a common reason why people harass cyclists. When drivers are angry, it’s usually because they feel like they have no control over their environment. 

Cyclists are perceived as having control over the road, so when drivers get frustrated with traffic or other drivers, it can be directed at cyclists.

It’s not uncommon for people to yell at cyclists when they’re frustrated about something else entirely (for example, if someone’s spouse just left them). 

If you find yourself feeling angry while driving behind a cyclist, try to take deep breaths and calm yourself down before yelling at them or honking your horn. Your stress levels will go down dramatically!

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While people may not admit it, vanity is a big part of why they harass cyclists. If someone thinks that you don’t look like a good driver or that you’ve made them look bad, they will react negatively toward you. It’s human nature for people to want others to think well of them. 

When someone feels like their self-worth has been damaged by something you did, they’ll lash out at you in an attempt to get back at the person who made them feel bad about themselves even if it’s just in their own head.

Cyclists are seen as inferior drivers because they don’t drive cars and thus don’t fit into our society’s definition of what makes someone “worthy” enough to be allowed on the road with vehicles driven by normal people who follow traffic laws (which cyclists generally do). 

This means that motorists often see cyclists as less worthy than themselves because they’re breaking societal norms by being on two wheels instead of four wheels; therefore cyclists are subjected to more harassment than other road users because their behavior isn’t aligned with our culture’s expectations surrounding driving behaviors!

Brand NameDescription
ChanelA brand known for its luxury fashion and beauty products, often associated with vanity and indulgence.
GucciA high-end fashion brand synonymous with opulence and self-indulgence, appealing to individuals driven by vanity.
LamborghiniAn iconic luxury car brand that symbolizes extravagance and vanity, capturing attention and status.
SephoraA renowned cosmetics retailer offering a wide range of beauty products, catering to the vanity of individuals seeking self-enhancement.
InstagramA popular social media platform where users often showcase their curated lives, highlighting vanity and self-promotion.


Discrimination is a form of prejudice or discrimination. It involves treating people differently based on their membership in a certain group. 

Discrimination can be based on race, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion and/or disability. The act of discriminating against someone because of their membership in a certain group is called “discrimination” or “prejudice”.

Ideology / Politics

The most obvious reason for people to harass cyclists is ideology or politics. If you don’t like bicycles, then it’s pretty easy to hate the people who ride them. 

Perhaps this person doesn’t believe that bicycles belong on roadways, or perhaps he feels that bikes are ruining his commute by clogging up the roads with their slow speeds and inattention. 

Maybe she thinks that cyclists are slowing her down when she needs to get somewhere fast, or maybe he just hates the fact that she’s not paying taxes on her vehicle like everyone else does.

Whatever your personal reasons may be, if someone’s harassing you because they have an issue with something related to cycling a belief about how streets should work and who should be allowed on them then there’s no question that this person is engaging in harassment based solely on your mode of transportation!

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Downward Comparison

Downward comparison: People who feel inferior to cyclists will try to make them feel inferior.

Cyclists are often mocked for their fitness, or even for being “too skinny”   when in fact, they’re generally more fit than the average person. 

You may have heard a friend say that cyclists are “too skinny” — but as a cyclist myself, I can assure you that this is not true! In fact, research suggests that people who cycle regularly tend to be healthier and live longer than those who do not cycle regularly.

 If anything, it’s the other way around: those people who are not regular cyclists might be jealous of how much exercise you get riding your bike every day!


This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to people harassing cyclists. There are many more reasons why people harass cyclists, and we hope this article helped you understand some of them better. 

If you find yourself being harassed by someone on their bike, remember that they probably aren’t doing it because they hate bicyclists in general – they may just be angry at something else going on in their lives right now!

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources for further reading on the topic of harassment faced by cyclists:


Why do some people harbor negative attitudes towards cyclists?

Negative attitudes towards cyclists can stem from a variety of factors, including:

  • Lack of understanding: Some individuals may not fully understand the benefits and rights of cyclists on the road, leading to misconceptions and negative perceptions.
  • Frustration and inconvenience: Drivers may feel frustrated or inconvenienced by the presence of cyclists, especially in situations where road sharing becomes challenging.
  • Perceived violation of traffic rules: Instances of perceived rule-breaking or disregard for traffic laws by some cyclists can contribute to negative attitudes from other road users.

How can drivers make cyclists feel unsafe on the road?

Several actions by drivers can contribute to a sense of insecurity among cyclists, including:

  • Unsafe overtaking: Drivers overtaking cyclists too closely or at high speeds can create dangerous situations and cause anxiety for cyclists.
  • Dooring: Opening car doors without checking for approaching cyclists can lead to collisions and serious injuries.
  • Aggressive behaviors: Aggressive driving, such as tailgating or honking excessively, can intimidate and endanger cyclists.

What are some common reasons that people choose not to bike?

There are several reasons why individuals may choose not to bike as a mode of transportation, including:

  • Lack of infrastructure: Inadequate bike lanes, unsafe road conditions, and limited cycling infrastructure can deter people from choosing biking as a viable option.
  • Safety concerns: Fear of traffic accidents and the perception of cycling as a dangerous activity can discourage individuals from taking up biking.
  • Limited accessibility: Accessibility issues, such as a lack of secure bike parking or the absence of shower facilities at workplaces, can make biking less convenient for some individuals.

How can policymakers address the barriers to cycling?

Policymakers can address barriers to cycling by:

  • Investing in infrastructure: Developing and improving cycling infrastructure, including bike lanes, paths, and secure parking facilities, can make cycling a safer and more accessible option.
  • Promoting education and awareness: Educating both cyclists and drivers on road sharing, safety practices, and mutual respect can foster a more positive and understanding relationship between different road users.
  • Implementing supportive policies: Implementing policies that prioritize active transportation, such as bike-friendly urban planning and incentives for cycling, can encourage more people to choose biking as a mode of transportation.

How can cyclists and drivers foster better coexistence on the road?

Both cyclists and drivers can contribute to a safer and more harmonious road environment by:

  • Following traffic rules: Cyclists and drivers should