This topic deserves a book not a post, but it keeps turning up, so let’s open this up to all of you. I’m curious what the women have to say. A comment yesterday from Hanny over in the Netherlands said manufacturers should take more notice of women riders. I’ve thought about that before but what should they do?
Motorcycle clothing companies are moving a lot more aggressively to capture that market, Joe Rocket and Icon certainly emphasize their women’s riding gear, cut differently and lots of colors and patterns for women only yet all of the same protection found in a man’s jacket. Harley Davidson has always had a women’s line, too, with very distinctive clothing. Some women want that but others prefer to look the same as the guys. Helmets and boots follow the same pattern, though the difference is really only color and women can get identical items that appear exactly alike.
What about the motorcycle itself? What exactly is a woman’s motorcycle? I suppose it would be one that has slightly shorter dimensions, lower seat height, less reach to the bars, recalibrated suspension but exactly the same in every other way. Women like colors much the same as a man, would any of you women really want a pink motorcycle? That draws attention to the “Look here, woman rider” idea but what if she likes black or red or any other color and just enjoys riding like anyone else?
The problem is some women want to ride and be accepted as just another rider, enjoying the sport and sharpening their skills, taking in the scenery or getting a knee down, just like the guys. However, some women want everyone to know it’s a woman riding this bike, probably the same ones who prefer the pastel jackets and special patterns. Both views are equally valid, but which one is in the majority? Let’s also not forget the women who ride behind their husband or boyfriend and are perfectly happy doing so.
If a company decides to manufacture clothing or motorcycles aimed at women riders, there’s a good chance they’ll satisfy some, not satisfy others and even offend a few. How can they safely wade into this territory? The best thing is to ask and that’s what I’m doing here. What do women riders want in clothing, equipment and motorcycles? C’mon ladies, let’s hear what you have to say.