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I've gone to to social events/meetups for two local(ish) cycling clubs. The closest club had a few younger members when I first attended, but most disappeared for the second social event.

The second club also, consisted almost exclusively of older people.

I can understand why there are fewer people in their 20's and 30's and 40's in cycling clubs.

Early 20's: no funds to buy expensive carbon bikes.
Late 20's: starting family, no time, less disposable income
30's: raising family
40's: still raising family
late 50's and 60's: empty nesters, retirees, more money to buy plastic bikes.

However, you would think that there would be SOME people in their 30's/40's/50's in cycling clubs, instead of the number being near zero.

There are sometimes cycling clubs associated with colleges and graduate programs.

I just think the expense and time commitment deter people from road cycling.

BTW, mountain bike clubs draw almost exclusively from 20's and 30's age groups from what I can tell.
 

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I've gone to to social events/meetups for two local(ish) cycling clubs. The closest club had a few younger members when I first attended, but most disappeared for the second social event.

The second club also, consisted almost exclusively of older people.

I can understand why there are fewer people in their 20's and 30's and 40's in cycling clubs.

Early 20's: no funds to buy expensive carbon bikes.
Late 20's: starting family, no time, less disposable income
30's: raising family
40's: still raising family
late 50's and 60's: empty nesters, retirees, more money to buy plastic bikes.

However, you would think that there would be SOME people in their 30's/40's/50's in cycling clubs, instead of the number being near zero.

There are sometimes cycling clubs associated with colleges and graduate programs.

I just think the expense and time commitment deter people from road cycling.

BTW, mountain bike clubs draw almost exclusively from 20's and 30's age groups from what I can tell.
I think you are fairly spot on with your assessment. Where I live there are a good amount of cycling clubs. They are very split between racing clubs and casual/touring clubs. The racing clubs require you to start X number of races per year. Usually 3-5.
 

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I have nothing to offer. I'm old, I don't belong to a cycling club and never have, I have been riding road bikes for 45 years (through all those life phases you listed in which people don't ride), and I don't have an expensive carbon bike. (A little-known secret: though you need a functioning bike to ride, it does NOT have to be an expensive one to be enjoyable).

So, I have no answer to your question.
 

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each club caters to their own kind though. I remember one city back east had two clubs. One was all guys over 40, fun loving bunch and some racers and the club really involved in organizing races. The other club was many times larger and had all ages with a ton of racers in their 20s and 30s. But each club organized things to appeal to themselves and people like themselves. As is the nature of private clubs.
 

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I think you're mostly right... but not completely. There are more guys in their 40s and up in clubs for sure. But around here (Atlanta), there are plenty of younger guys in clubs.

The factors you listed are definitely part of it. But, I think it's a bit more complicated - and gets to BCSaltchucker's point - clubs tend to cater to their "own kind", e.g. age, racers, fast, slow... Organizing a club is likely more of an older - 40s and up - thing. So, if a handful of guys in their 40s organize a club, guess who's going to end up in that club

Ironically, my club - made up primarily of mid-40s to mid 50s, is trying to get younger guys to join. We started the club 10 years ago. The make up was more like mid-30s to mid-40s then. Shocker

Punch line: Start a club
 

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I've gone to to social events/meetups for two local(ish) cycling clubs. The closest club had a few younger members when I first attended, but most disappeared for the second social event.

The second club also, consisted almost exclusively of older people.

I can understand why there are fewer people in their 20's and 30's and 40's in cycling clubs.

Early 20's: no funds to buy expensive carbon bikes.
Late 20's: starting family, no time, less disposable income
30's: raising family
40's: still raising family
late 50's and 60's: empty nesters, retirees, more money to buy plastic bikes.

However, you would think that there would be SOME people in their 30's/40's/50's in cycling clubs, instead of the number being near zero.

There are sometimes cycling clubs associated with colleges and graduate programs.

I just think the expense and time commitment deter people from road cycling.

BTW, mountain bike clubs draw almost exclusively from 20's and 30's age groups from what I can tell.
I started road riding in my late 20's. I belonged to a club and rode through all the life phases you mentioned. I agree with Saltchucker, clubs attract riders that are similar to the clubs leadership. I'd say just wait it out a couple of decades. Eventually you'll be old and fit right in
 

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I've gone to to social events/meetups for two local(ish) cycling clubs. The closest club had a few younger members when I first attended, but most disappeared for the second social event.
The second club also, consisted almost exclusively of older people.
I can understand why there are fewer people in their 20's and 30's and 40's in cycling clubs.
Early 20's: no funds to buy expensive carbon bikes.
Late 20's: starting family, no time, less disposable income
30's: raising family
40's: still raising family
late 50's and 60's: empty nesters, retirees, more money to buy plastic bikes.
I'm the upside-down to all your findings and theories -

Started riding by joining a club at age 14. Loved it and rode all over northern England.
Mid teens - had a custom bike.
Changed countries.
20's - had family but had lots of time for riding and $ for equipment.
20s, 30s, 40s - was in and out of a couple of clubs.
50s+ - cheesed of with clubs (people show up late; "I forgot my shoes"; "I have a flat tire"; "My brake is dragging"; "I want to go this way, not that way"; "I had to shampoo my hamster" blah-blah-blah).
60s+ - empty nester, retiree, enough money to buy titanium bikes.

Now you couldn't pay me to be in a club. I'm responsible for my own timekeeping, mechanicals, route direction and enjoy the lack of whinging and whining.
 

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Sounds like a club I used to ride with here in NJ. Most members were 50+ y/o. Some in their 80's. Rides during the work week included lots of retirees. Almost nobody under 40, and very, very few women.
 

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I can't disagree with anything said here.

I will just add that I think there is a trend towards better health and fitness in the 50+ crowd that has a lot of them showing up at club meets, charity rides, etc...
 

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Mike, I'm sorry I'm blocked from adding to your reputation for that excellent post, especially the bi-lingual "whinging and whining." It's good to retain one's linguistic heritage (they say Britain and the U.S. are "two nations divided by a common language").
 

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Every once in a wile ride with a club I joined for the 15% off on parts at the local bike shops. I'm 73 YO now, but can tell you this: were I in my teens and had to ride with that club, I would scream in sheer frustration at their insanely cautious riding (GRAVEL! STICKS! PINE CONE! SLOWING! STOPPING!) and never ride with them again.
 

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Every once in a wile ride with a club I joined for the 15% off on parts at the local bike shops.
Shop MO and get (at least) 50% off.

I'm 73 YO now, but can tell you this: were I in my teens and had to ride with that club, I would scream in sheer frustration at their insanely cautious riding (GRAVEL! STICKS! PINE CONE! SLOWING! STOPPING!) and never ride with them again.
Pine cone! Hahahaha, too funny Wim! Yeah all I need to know are potholes. If I don't know they're slowing or stopping, I shouldn't be there.
 

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I've had a few riding buddies who had to drop out of cycling for many years while they raised families.

The folks I would ride with on the racing group rides pretty much were younger but never socialized much as they barely had time to train, much less meet for a coffee.

The non-racing clubs I've been a member of all had riders old enough to have kids who were teenaged and could care where Dad or Mom were on Sat morning, or were out of the house completely. Thus the parents could then enjoy the weekend activities.
 

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Mike, I'm sorry I'm blocked from adding to your reputation for that excellent post, especially the bi-lingual "whinging and whining." It's good to retain one's linguistic heritage (they say Britain and the U.S. are "two nations divided by a common language").
No problem JC!
 

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My wife and I were part of a cycling club for a couple years and found that it really didn't offer anything of value to us - aside from the excellent pre- and post-season pot luck dinners.

The club was primarily focused on road racing events. We don't race.

There was some emphasis of group road rides. Except for one gravel grinder, we never made it to any of them because we prefer to mtn bike ride. We also don't like riding in large groups on the road.

Some of the road riders harbored animosity towards the mtn bikers due to local trail access issues. There was political fallout from that within the club too. I think that eventually led to the mtn bikers breaking off from the club but I'd lost interest by then.

So, we were in the club in our early 30s but really didn't see the point in staying. Now we're in our 40s and prefer to ride etc. with our friends. They are also not in the club.
 
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