Safer cycling in older age (SiFAr): a protocol of a randomized controlled trial

Siebentritt H, Keppner V, Britting S, Kob R, Rappl A, Sieber C, Freiberger E (2021)

Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2021


Book Volume: 21

Article Number: 546

Journal Issue: 1

DOI: 10.1186/s12877-021-02502-5


Background: Cycling has positive effects on health and the proportion of older cyclists is rising. However, the risk for older adults to be injured or killed by a bicycle accident increases. The aim of the ongoing project “Safer Cycling in Older Age (SiFAr)” is to promote safer cycling in community-dwelling older adults with a structured, multi-component exercise training. Methods: SiFAr is a randomized, controlled trial with a duration of 3 months for the intervention and a 6–9 months follow-up. We address community-dwelling persons aged 65 years and older living in the area Nürnberg-Fürth-Erlangen (Germany) who are either 1) beginners with the e-bike or 2) feeling self-reported unsteadiness when cycling or 3) uptaking cycling after a longer break. Long-term, experienced cyclists without subjectively reported limitations or worries when cycling are excluded. Participants are either randomized 1:1 to an intervention group (IG; receiving multi-component exercise program related to cycling, MEPC) or an active control group (aCG; receiving health and bicycle-related presentations, HRP). The purpose of this study is to investigate if the cycling competence of the IG will improve compared to the aCG. The cycling competence as primary outcome is tested not blinded in a standardized cycle course prior and after the intervention period, which consists of variant tasks requiring motor and cognitive skills related to traffic situations in daily life. Additional assessments such as physical functioning, quality of life, fear of falling, questionnaires regarding cycling behavior are obtained. To investigate the primary objective, regression analyses with difference of errors in the cycling course as independent variable and group as dichotomous dependent variable adjusted for covariates (sex, bicycle type) will be performed. The trial design is described in the present manuscript, using the extended CONSORT checklist for reporting pragmatic trials. Discussion: Since there is a lack of cycling-related interventions for older people, SiFAr aims to evaluate a standardized intervention to enhance cycling safety. The results of the SiFAr trial could contribute to the implementation of an evaluated cycling course concept promoting mobility and independence of older adults. Trial registration: This study was registered with NCT04362514 on April 27, 2020

Authors with CRIS profile

How to cite


Siebentritt, H., Keppner, V., Britting, S., Kob, R., Rappl, A., Sieber, C., & Freiberger, E. (2021). Safer cycling in older age (SiFAr): a protocol of a randomized controlled trial. BMC Geriatrics, 21(1).


Siebentritt, Hanna, et al. "Safer cycling in older age (SiFAr): a protocol of a randomized controlled trial." BMC Geriatrics 21.1 (2021).

BibTeX: Download