Case Study – Learn to Cycle (Adult)
Nasir approached the Active Travel Hub in the summer of 2021 asking to learn to cycle. At this time, he could not ride a bike at all. We have provided him with weekly lessons and built up his skills and confidence. Now he can ride a bike well and we are continuing to work with him on developing his on-road cycling so he can travel by bike for short local journeys. Below is his story.
“When people say having children changes your perspective towards life – that is so true, and I found that out from my own life experience. I and my wife found that out in 2015 when we had our son after a long time of being married. As our son grows old, I find myself trying to find activities that will keep him active and make him want to make healthy choices in his life. One of these things was to ensure that he is active and does not become over-reliant on our daily comforts in life which I believe cost us our health in the long run. With that perspective, cycling was on top of my list of activities to introduce into his daily routine. This also takes him to the outdoors; learn an excellent healthy activity we will also contribute to the improvement of our environment by reducing our carbon footprint and not use cars or public transport or use it minimally.
Unfortunately, I have never learnt to ride a bike and at the age of 54 I find it extraordinary having to learn to bike, but I wanted to set an example for my son and was keen to get health benefits from cycling for myself as well. An additional complication when I started looking for cycling tuition was as it was early in 2020 the country was going through COVID which means the sessions were few and restricted. Fortunately, I did manage to contact Forth Valley Active Travel Hubs in mid-2021 through social media and was then contacted by a very friendly team who were able to accommodate the challenges that I brought to them. They were kind enough to not only accommodate the dates and time but also lend me a cycle for training sessions as I did not have a bike at that time. This allowed me to try the sessions without any major financial commitment upfront from me and gave me the liberty to enjoy the experience that all cyclists enjoy.
Upon my request for assistance, the team also advised me on what to look for in a new bicycle and the budgets that may be required which than assisted me in purchasing a bicycle for myself and not only train with the team but also invest time at home in learning basic balancing skills. After all this time, I am now able to balance a bicycle and use the pedals and am thankful to the cycling team for their assistance. This journey continues for myself, and I look forward to joining the hub team on their activities and make cycling a daily routine to replace the use of a use of carbons through my car.
Additionally, I have now also been able to introduce my son to these lessons recently and he is enjoying picking up the new skills and seem to be catching it much more quickly than I did. If cycling as a healthy lifestyle is the only legacy, I can leave him I will feel that I have done my job as a parent with the assistance of wonderful team at the Forth Valley Active Travel Hub and I will always be thankful to them.
As I and my son now learn how to cycle safely in a car park or the main road, we look forward to becoming fully accomplished cyclists and join the Hub team in their events and pass on the joys and pleasure of cycling to other people.
Many thanks Hub team. ”
Case Study by Nasir Ali