The World Naked Bike Ride is held annually, throughout the year, on every single continent on earth except Antarctica (note: penguins and seals don’t pedal bicycles). The event isn’t restricted by precipitation and most rides continue even through the rain. Downpours may affect the number of riders, but for the most part, the rides are still held. This event takes place all year long as extreme temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere are usually moderate in the Northern, and vice-versa.
The World Naked Bike Ride (WNBR) is an international clothing optional activity that has participants and volunteers plan, organize, meet and enjoy together. The overwhelming majority ride bicycles but each year increasing numbers use skateboards and inline skates. Some even use unicycles. The bare (naked, nude) aspect of the ride is to “deliver a vision of a cleaner, safer, body positive world.” Full or partial nudity is encouraged but not mandatory.
In 2003, Conrad Schmidt began planning the WNBR after having organized naked bike rides for the group, Artists for Peace/Artists Against War. These rides were protesting the fighting in both Afghanistan and Iraq and the military invasions of those countries.
Initially, the primary message of the WNBR was protesting oil and petroleum dependency an in recognizing the power and individuality of the human body. Later, in 2006, the primary mission began the shift to also incorporate both cycling and pedestrian advocacy.
The very first World Naked Bike Ride was held in June, 2004, in a total of 28 cities in ten different countries located on four continents. Since that beginning, WNBR has continued to grow every year as more people become aware of both the message and the mission. Publicity surrounding the event has also generated new countries and locations for the WNBR.
The WNBR promotes bicycle and public transportation, renewable energy, recreation, walkable communities and environmentally responsible and sustainable living in this, the 21st century. Participants acknowledge and promote the unlimited benefits of a car-free lifestyle, reduced vehicle emissions, free parking and a greater sense of individual freedom. WNBR also encourages respect and body positivity.
“We face automobile traffic with our naked bodies as the best way of defending our dignity and exposing the unique dangers faced by cyclists and pedestrians as well as the negative consequences we all face due to dependence on oil and other forms of non-renewable energy.” – World Naked Bike Ride website –
The gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer (GLBTQ) community has been very obvious and visible of supporting the mission and goals of the WNBR. Part of the reason for this is because of the involvement of the number of proudly GLBTQ bare practitioners in the early years of the event being held. The other reason is the active interest and support the community has always offered to environmental concerns and issues. Of particular note is the fact that this community has always been comfortable in displaying and wearing symbols representing the GLBTQ movement (such as the rainbow flag) on the bicycle in the above photo.
The numerous WNBR organizing and planning groups throughout the world have welcomed the GLBTQ community in the various logistical stages for each event. In some countries, this has been one of the few times the community has felt comfortable in involvement.
One of the enduring benefits of the WNBR is the increased acceptance and popularity of the clothes freedom lifestyle. The actual numbers of committed bare practitioners (naturist or nudist) may not have grown dramatically, but the respect that the community has received is rising.
Previously, I published about the WNBR earlier in the Northern Hemisphere spring season. As the seasons are again about to change, from winter to spring in the Southern Hemisphere and from summer into autumn in the Northern Hemisphere, I felt this time of year is equally appropriate for a cycling posting! Check the references below to read my previous postings here.
For additional information on the World Naked Bike Ride, please visit their website by clicking on the title directly below this paragraph. Be advised that the website is maintained by volunteers and the information is updated irregularly.
To read of my own actual participation in the Washington, D.C., USA World Naked Bike Ride, please click onto the link listed below.
My earliest posting on the World Naked Bike Ride here on ReNude Pride is linked below.