Women Involved Series: Jacqui Ma
Learn more about Jacqui and Goodordering here.
Tell us about your introduction to #bikelife and how it has influenced your life-
My introduction into cycling came when I borrowed a bike from the company I was working for and decided to see if it was quicker to get home by bike or by public transport. The bike won and I never looked back since.
You created the brand, Goodordering. Tell us about Goodordering and what it's all about-
Goodordering is all about getting people to ride bikes more. We do this through designing feel-good and functional cycling accessories for urban commuters, that simplify your ride experience, making it more enjoyable.
What are your plans for 2019 with Goodordering? What should folks look for?
In 2019 we will continue to grow the range, bringing out some new styles of bags that people have been asking for and looking at manufacturing our bags a little bit closer to home in Europe.
The cycling industry is very friendly, I’ve found. My type of cycling is definitely more about lifestyle, family and commuting so I love to inspire more people to choose a bike ride more regularly, especially mums and kids.
Why do you feel it is important for women to be involved in the cycling industry?
Women need other women as role models, and especially with inspiration to cycle themselves. The global statistics show that girls cycle when they are kids but tend to stop for good as they become a teenager, unlike boys. Women working in bike shops, such as mechanics, are instrumental in removing the macho -sometimes intimidating- aspect of cycling. Being a role model for women to work in less traditional female roles is really important to me.
Tell us about the Girls Riding Bikes rides, what was your inspiration?
For this activity, the aim was to inspire influential bloggers to spread the word to encourage more women to give cycling a try, and then build their confidence as they ride. The more people converted to cycling, the better (for physical/mental wellbeing, for the environment etc.) especially those who are not typical cyclists. Our aim is to remove some of the main barriers to cycling for women; in London those include safety and fashion.
What do you love about riding your bike?
In a world overrun with technology these days, being on my bike forces me to switch off. It allows my mind to wander as I focus on the road or the traffic and i think this is great for my mental health and creative abilities.
Cycling is important to you and your family; how do you incorporate it in daily life?
My partner also cycles to work and we ride together as a family on the weekend around the park or to friends houses. We use bikes mainly for transport and hope that we have inspired our kids to lead a more healthy and outdoorsy life.
Do you have any suggestions for folks who are nervous to commute by bike?
Borrow a bike and go out with a friend to a local park. Get familiar with your bike -gears, seat height etc - so it feels ‘yours’, and can begin to feel like an extension of you. Start small and build your confidence up slowly would be my best advice to start riding.
What do you feel deters women from getting involved with cycling?
From my research, the two main reasons women don’t cycle more in the city, especially commuting, is that they either feel it’s too dangerous or they think it makes them too sweaty and not presentable. Many workplaces are changing to have showers and places for people to freshen up, which is great. The safety aspect is slowly changing too with better city infrastructure and more cyclists.
What do you feel could change industry-wise or locally to encourage more women to be involved?
Changes need to be made on every level; I don’t believe there is one thing that could be done alone. Having more female cycling role models, along with good infrastructure and amenities. Also, as more pretty bikes and female-friendly accessories hit the market, women can realise they don’t have to settle, instead they can own the bike of their dreams.
What inspires you to encourage women to ride?
I love to encourage women to ride because I have seen first hand the benefits of cycling - psychological, health-wise and saving time and money. Women traditionally suffer from less confidence than men across the board so cycling is just one avenue for evening up this confidence disparity.
Tell us a random fact about yourself!
I am really scared of snails!