Middle-aged men in Lycra are a common sight on British roads nowadays. So much so that the acronym MAMIL is one of 1,000 new words added to the Oxford English Dictionary.
The term was coined by retail analyst Mintel after research showed a boom in men of a certain age donning tight cycling kit in 2010.
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The news comes as research by an Australian university shows that MAMILs are ‘the road’s most endangered species on a bicycle’. Three-quarters of Melbourne crash victims surveyed were men, with two-thirds of those aged between 35 and 54.
Another report in Australia showed that 2,917 ‘sports cyclists’ were admitted to hospital in 2011-12, with men between 35 and 54 making up 1,195 of them.
Children between the ages of 15-17 made up just 302 in comparison, “which is pretty astounding considering how many children that age still ride bikes and do stupid things,” comments Sam de Brito in the Sydney Morning Herald.