Bookmark and Share

The Give A Wave Paradigm Shift

As motorists and cyclists we all know that road rage across our nation has increased dramatically in recent years and because of this the danger to cyclists has become particularly serious. There is a long list of reasons for this including inadequate infrastructure for both cyclists and motorists, in-vehicle distractions such as cell phones with texting and e-mail capabilities and the usual life pressures that cause distractions. And with an ever increasing number of cyclists sharing roads with vehicles the bad habits that many cyclists exhibit have ratcheted tensions up to a new high.

With h
uman nature being what it is, people are easily distracted and many have the unique ability to be both incredibly compassionate and frighteningly cruel, often times when confronted with very similar situations. Through our Give A Wave campaign we hope to capitalize on the compassionate and attentive parts within each of us. In order to do this we will use one-on-one encounters between cyclists and motorists to communicate a positive message.

Our Give A Wave campaign aims to overcome negative issues and stereotypes by encouraging cyclists to act responsibly and to thank drivers that do the same. It is all too common for cyclists (and drivers for that matter) to give someone the finger after being annoyed and, let's face it, that particular hand signal doesn't really help relations.

We truly believe that most people are good folks who want to do the right thing, even if they don't always know what that is. And now, by "giving a wave," cyclists can become ambassadors of goodwill and begin to "train" motorists to drive more safely when they happen upon a cyclist.

How You Can Help

A shift in thinking and practice is necessary for change to occur. Cyclists must begin acting resposibly and, as sad as it may seem, we must thank safe and conscientious drivers for conditions to improve. Every single time a cyclist reinforces a driver's positive behavior by giving a wave we are one step closer to having safe roads. When we wave to drivers who do the right thing we are communicating an entire series of positive messages...all with one simple, universal and effective act.

When a driver receives a wave they know they did the right thing. They know it was appreciated. They know the cyclist is a fellow human being. They know that respect and fair treatment happens on a two way street. And, maybe most importantly, the next time they encounter a cyclist they will be more inclined to do the right thing again.

This way of looking at the world is obviously not for everyone, and clearly there will always be irresponsible cyclists and drivers, but we are certain that the vast majority of our nation's citizens are willing to give others the benefit of the doubt, as long as they receive the same in return.

So, let's all get to work. Act responsibly, be kind and spread the word about what it means to do the right thing. Give A Wave, Pay It Forward and see how quickly the world can change.