When Maral Yazarloo-Pattrick wanted to ride a motorbike for the first time when she was 23, she was told, going by her long nails and high heels, “this is not the woman’s thing”. A fellow student at Pune University, where she did her PhD in Marketing, did not allow the girl to sit on his motorbike because the girl was not a rider.
Thirteen years later, in 2018, she completed a solo world tour, spanning all seven continents, and covering over 1, 00, 000 kilometres. And, she did this whenever she has been pregnant.
“In a world run by men, when a woman wants to ride a motorbike, the first reaction is that they cannot do it, ” says Maral. “I faced the same thing. But what I did, most men have not. This goes on to say that not only can women do what males can; women can do things men cannot think about. ”
Maral will be among the many bikers at the India Bike Week, an annual motorcycle festival, the eighth edition of which will be held in Goa on December 2 and 3. While most of the festival attendees have been guys, there is an increasing group of ladies at the festival, which is a noteworthy development for the Indian motorbiking community.
According to Martin da Costa, the particular festival director and CEO of 70 EMG, typically the number of women riding into India Bike Week has increased by over 250% over the past five years. “We guesstimate that will the number of women leisure biker riders in Indian has more than doubled since 2018, ” he says.
The figures refute the notion that motorbikes are purely a man’s pursuit. Motorcycle advertisements almost always feature only adult men. Women, if at all they are featured in the ad, are used as objects of glamour. They are usually in awe of the hunky man riding a well-built vehicle.
“Motorbike brands focus more on adult males because they believe gentlemen know more about vehicles than women. This is because men are a lot more exposed to automobiles from an early age, ” says Sameera Dahiya, who has covered 16, 300 kilometres including 28 states and six Union Territories in 24 days. “But things are usually slowly changing now. There is now an increasing acceptance of women on motorbikes. For instance, you see even more women within motorsports. I think women driving bikes will certainly gradually be normalised. ”
Having ridden across Of india twice inside six years, Sameera says that it is not really entirely unsafe for a woman in order to go on long rides within the country. “Whenever the woman trips a motorbike – with regard to commute or long tours – a few things are spoken regarding their safety. A lot of them are myths. But some of them are practical advice that can be followed. For instance, it is best to be able to avoid secluded areas at night, especially in certain parts of the country, ” she adds.
Urvashi Patole, this co-founder associated with Bikerni, an all-women motorcycle association, concurs with Sameera. “I have travelled to the remotest regarding locations in the North East or often the South plus it’s always been safe. More compared to carrying pepper spray or even a knife, the best thing to ensure your safety is for you to be aware of your surroundings. You shouldn’t be stopping at places where it’s secluded. Have a spare phone with you. Research concerning the place you are usually going to help. ”
More than bikes
Maral, Sameera, and Urvashi at your India Bike Week may interact with fellow riders with regards to their experiences of riding to faraway lands.
“Motorbiking is not a simple act like, say, going to the exact gym to get fit, ” states Maral. “Most bikers that travel are seeking answers beyond their daily lives. They want to know the purpose of their lives. They want in order to help society in the way of which they could because these people understand the value of life. ”
Maral, who was born throughout Iran, will be now campaigning for the particular women there to get permission to ride motorbikes. She says this is not necessarily just about them being able to trip a motorcycle. “They need to be able to decide for themselves. If they will want to drive a motor cycle, nothing should stop all of them. It’s about their right to existence and freedom. ”
For even more information regarding India Bicycle Week, visit indiabikeweek. in