Economic & Health Benefits of Bicycling in Iowa

This study identifies the economic and health impacts of bicycling in Iowa.

by Iowa Bicycle Coalition


Economic and Health Benefits of Bicycling in Iowa


This study identifies the economic and health impacts of bicycling in Iowa. Impacts are estimated based on spending by individual cyclists, bicycle specific retail sales, economic activity generated by bicycle organizations, and health cost savings in the State of Iowa. The study is based on primary data collected from individual cyclists, bicycle specific retail operators and bicycle organizations. Health impacts are based on selected primary and secondary data detailed in the methodology. This study presents:

  • A profile of the commuter and recreational cyclists in Iowa (party and trip characteristics, spending, and demographic profiles);
  • A profile of bicycle retail establishments in Iowa;
  • A profile of bicycle organizations in Iowa; and
  • A profile of the health benefits and health savings from cycling in Iowa.

The data for the study were collected using three questionnaires that were distributed to bicycle riders, bicycle- specific retail businesses and bicycle organizations in Iowa during the fall of 2011. The U.S. Census and Iowa Department of Transportation statistics were utilized to estimate the number of bicycle riders. Health statistics were obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Published September 01, 2011

About the Author


The Iowa Bicycle Coalition is an exciting organization working to promote Iowa cycling as safe and enjoyable recreation and transportation. The 501(c)(3) non-profit group was launched by bicycling advocates from across Iowa and will unite the voices of road riders, mountain bikers, recreation riders, commuters, and anyone else who prefers a bicycle for recreation and transportation.

More articles by this author

More Articles in this Category

The Economic Benefits of Mountain Biking at One of Its Meccas: An Application of the Travel Cost Method to Mountain Biking in Moab, Utah

This 1997 paper estimates the value of a relatively new form of recreation: mountain biking. Its popularity has resulted in many documented conflicts, and its value must be estimated so an informed decision regarding trail allocation can be made. A travel cost model (TCM) is used to estimate the economic benefits, measured by consumer surplus, to the users of mountain bike trails near Moab, Utah.

Mountain Biking as a Means to Encourage Public Health and Wellbeing

This manuscript explains how mountain biking is related to public health and the issues underlying trail access in the United States.

The Physiology of Mountain Biking

In recent years, competitive mountain biking has attracted the interest of sport scientists, and a small but growing number of physiological studies have been published. The aim of this review is to provide a synthesis of this literature and directions for future research.

Adapting to the New Economy: The Impacts of Mountain Bike Tourism in Oakridge, Oregon

Oakridge provides but one example of a rural community experiencing economic and social decline.