Women Who Ride a Motorcycle Are Happier Than Those Who Dont

New study reveals a motorcycle increases one's self satisfaction

Soon, women everywhere will be thinking about New Years resolutions they could make to live a more fulfilled life in 2014 and beyond. Once they make those resolutions, they may turn to self-help books, fad diets and online advice to try and make them a reality. But who knew that the key to happiness might be where women least expect – out on the open road, and on two wheels.

Women Who Ride Motorcycle Happier Infographic
An infographic outlining statistics that proves womens road to happiness starts on a motorcycle. Read the first hand accounts of women motorcycle riders road to happiness here. Click image to enlarge.

A new study shows that women who ride their own motorcycles are noticeably happier—in life, in relationships, and even in the bedroom—than women who dont ride. “I definitely see this to be true in my work as founder and editor of WomenRidersNow.com (WRN),” said Genevieve Schmitt. “As the leading resource for women motorcyclists, we receive lots of stories from women riders, and its quite evident they feel happy, fulfilled and are enjoying life to the fullest.”

The study, conducted by Kelton and commissioned by Harley-Davidson, interviewed 1,013 adult female riders and 1,016 adult female non-riders, and the findings make it clear that riding a motorcycle greatly improves a womans feelings of overall self-worth. Key insights surrounding women who ride motorcycles in comparison to those who dont include the following:

• More than twice as many always feel happy (37 percent of riders vs. 16 percent of non-riders)
• Nearly four times as many always feel sexy (27 percent of riders vs. 7 percent of non-riders)
• Nearly twice as many always feel confident (35 percent of riders vs. 18 percent of non-riders)

Women Who Ride Motorcycle Happier Sportster
The Harley-Davidson XL1200X Sportster Forty-Eight is a popular motorcycle for beginning women riders.

According to the study, more than half (53 percent) of women who ride cite their motorcycle as a key source of happiness and nearly three in four (74 percent) believe their lives have improved since they started riding. “Riding a motorcycle is the ultimate form of freedom and self-expression, so it makes sense that women riders are happier in life and, in general, feel more fulfilled,” said Claudia Garber, Director of Womens Outreach for Harley-Davidson. “Thats why learning to ride a motorcycle is the perfect gift you can give yourself and the best resolution to make for a truly life-changing new year.”

Women Who Ride Motorcycle Happier Ninja 300
The Kawasaki Ninja 300 is a popular motorcycle for beginning women riders who want to ride a sportier ride.

WomenRidersNow.com (WRN), the leading online motorcycle resource for women riders, has the most comprehensive beginners guide on the web for women interested in getting into riding. While women and men ride for the same reasons, women approach the activity differently than men often wrestling with notions in their head on why they should, or shouldnt ride. The WRNs Beginners Guide addresses all of those issues and provides solutions to help women get in the saddle of their own motorcycle.

Riding Improves Relationships
Beyond positively impacting a womans sense of self, the study also shows riding can improve relationships. When it comes to romance, women who ride leave non-riders in their dust, being more content with:

• Communication with their significant other (60 percent of riders vs. 38 percent of non-riders)
• Physical intimacy (51 percent of riders vs. 35 percent of non-riders)

Stress can cause tension between significant others, but since more than a third (34 percent) of women riders report that they now feel less stressed after starting to ride, its not surprising that 50 percent of them are extremely satisfied with the state of their current relationships.

The Harley-Davidson Female Riders Survey was conducted by Kelton, a leading global insights firm, May 20 to May 28, 2013 among 1,013 adult American women who ride motorcycles sometimes or regularly and 1,016 adult American women who never ride motorcycles, using an email invitation and an online survey. Harley-Davidson has a site dedicated to women motorcycles and can be found at h-d.com/women.

Related Articles
Women Motorcycle Riding Clubs
WRN Beginners Guide
Women Riders Now Reader Stories

17 thoughts on Women Who Ride a Motorcycle Are Happier Than Those Who Dont

  1. Well, I just wanted to say love the articles but I have found as an experienced rider, from dirt bikes to street bikes (I ride sleds, four-wheelers, dirt, water, etc. and currently own a Kawasaki 600, Honda CBR 1000RR, and Harley Sportster) that it is only common for these bikes you listed as the most popular top ten beginner bikes to be popular because someone else recommended them as beginner bikes. They should be listed as city bikes top ten and suburban bikes top 10 and the ones your husband/boyfriend/partner didn’t pick out for you. I find it’s common that the Kawaski 300 is popular for beginners but the Kawaski 600 should be listed as the best beginner suburban bike for women; and the Sportster 883, not the Kawasaki 300. Problem is after you learn how to ride these bikes are not suitable; if you’re going to spend a few thousand dollars get a bike you can learn on and then keep riding on, the bike you became comfortable on is always the best bike to ride that first few summers. Not purchasing the smaller bike then buying another and learning again.I’ve heard guys complaining to the other men how he has to wait up for his partner—keep in mind he is riding a 600 or bigger but his partner is on a 300. It becomes frustrating and then causes issues. I see this on sled, motorcycles and other outdoor activities. In order to want to ride and to have a better time with the experience, don’t settle for what they say you should have—talk to a women rider like myself. I would tell you depending on your riding style and where you’re riding what works. It’s different if you buy a bike to zip around a city and to work then to ride across state lines on an adventure with a group.

    1. We generally recommend small, lightweight, easy to handle motorcycles to learn on because it offers the safest, most confidence-inspiring way to learn. I’ve rarely heard riders complain they wasted their money on a small cc motorcycle to start with, as there is always a new rider ready to purchase it. Once you have outgrown the small bike, it’s pretty easy to sell it and buy a larger motorcycle.If you are riding with other riders who are not patient enough to wait for you without complaining, I recommend finding a new riding buddy.

  2. Sounds like Janice is on the wrong website. I love my four motos and my life has changed dramatically for the better since I started riding! I am present—there is no “what if” or “what was” when I ride. There is me and what is, right now. I am a much happier girl! I’d say this article fits me to a tee. Fortunately, my husband does not ride. It’s a solo endeavor.

  3. This article is ridiculous. It sounds like a feminine protection commercial written by a man. As a 37-year riding veteran, reading this only makes me think that you haven’t got a clue why women ride. And Harley Davidson, the misogynist manufacturer that uses Marissa Miller, who doesn’t even ride? Surveys? You clearly don’t understand yourself. Riding doesn’t make a woman have better sex, just more because it’s a male fantasy, or she gets a new man. Riding can’t make you happy, only you can. Get a grip.

  4. I think you are absolutely right. I just bought my Harley Super Glide in June of this year and I can’t keep myself away from it. I love it! It’s in my blood. I can say I will never stop. I’m totally happy with my scoot.

  5. I would argue that any study that compares one group of passionate hobbyists to an average group of people would yield similar results.

  6. Just bought my first Honda CBR250R. Can’t wait to start learning to ride. Bring on the happiness!

    1. Congratulations! Please be sure to sign up for the WRN Newsletter at this link so you don’t miss a story that we post. Good luck to you.

  7. I love riding. As a woman it gives me confidence and clarity when I ride. As women we are pulled in 500 different directions! And when I am on the bike it helps give me time “just for me.” Great article

  8. Wow, did that ever hit home. In the 14 years that I have been riding and, whether it be on my Harley or my Star, the feeling of knowing that this is something that I can do on my own without a man’s help is so intensely empowering. It makes me happy, it makes me smile, and it makes the cobwebs go away. This is freedom personified! To any woman who is thinking about riding, GO FOR IT!!

  9. Great study! I hope Harley-Davidson uses some of these findings to market motorcycling to women in more mainstream mags. I would love to see an ad similar to the graphic you used above in mags like Better Homes and Garden, Redbook, Oprah, etc. Let’s let other women know what we’ve already figured out!

  10. I’ve been riding for 20 years and I have to say that your article hits the nail right on the head. The studies are accurate! It’s true that a woman riding her own motorcycle enhances so many aspects of her life. It’s a feeling like no other.

  11. Im 41 years young and I just enrolled myself in a Harley-Davidson motorcycle training course. I start on January 17, 2014! I’m super excited and counting down the days until my course. My next step after finishing the course is going to our local Harley-Davidson dealer and buying my very own Harley. I would like to thank my very good friend Roy Zubia for introducing me to this new chapter in my life!

    1. The Harley-Davidson training course is called Rider’s Edge for anyone interested. Lucy, when you are finished be sure to check the WRN Beginner’s Guide for information on choosing your first motorcycle. There is a lot of useful information there for you. Congratulations and good luck!

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