CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Debate!

Bikeability

(7 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by Colonies_Chris
  • Latest reply from biketrain

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  1. Colonies_Chris
    Member

    I spent the day at the Bikeability conference. It was both encouraging and depressing. Encouraging because there were a lot of enthusiastic and committed people who are working hard to devise better ways to give children cycle training, and because the figures show that more schools are providing this training for their pupils. Depressing because the whole thing was focused on the training, with no-one asking why all that effort is bearing so little fruit, in terms of actual real-life cycling. No speaker mentioned the negligible increase in cycling across Scotland; they only talked about the increasing numbers of children trained, assessed and certified, and the shiny new training materials (including an app, of course). I felt like a party pooper for asking for comment about that at the end - as if I shouldn't spoil things by questioning the outcome of all that work and goodwill. It seemed to me like a bit of a bubble - they're so taken up with delivering the training in the best possible ways that they just don't want to see the reality that without better infrastructure, it's pretty much all going for nothing. (In case anyone's wondering where I'm coming from on this, I'm a Bikeability-certified trainer but I only work with older adults).

    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. I get this exactly CC

    I've reluctantly told CEC to stop asking me to mentor Schools. They seem solely concerned with ticking boxes and processing numbers. Even more sadly, Cycling Scotland seem happy with this.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. chdot
    Admin

    I spent about 20 years (more off than on) trying to get SG (right from the start of SP) to pay for Cycle Training to be delivered in all schools.

    The only way to do it would be with paid trainers.

    SG & CS both happy with the ‘volunteer model’.

    Many schools have found it increasingly difficult to get volunteers (for many reasons).

    I eventually realised that SG didn’t really care if children got proper training for cycling (particularly on roads).

    I now also think that Bikeability - even when delivered properly - doesn’t produce adequate outcomes for many children.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. Frenchy
    Member

    Can you explain the last bit a bit more?

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. AIMC
    Member

    Bikeability is boring. It turns kids off. Get them on their bikes and have fun. Take them on journeys and explore the amazing off road routes we have here in Edinburgh. Until we have decent Cycling infrastructure that’s the only place their parents will allow them to cycle
    Glad I wasn’t at the conference. It would have annoyed me. They wasted loads of money years ago supplying signs, bibs and cones to every school. No doubt they’ve wasted loads of money again supplying ‘shiny new training materials’

    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. It can be boring.

    I've witnessed it being delivered terribly.

    I go to great lengths to make every session as fun as possible, because if it isn't kids won't want to get on their bikes.

    Every school i have worked with i have set off with aim of Bikeability ending with a "journey"

    At every opportunity, I've championed the teaching of level 3

    I've spent a lot of time hitting my head off a brick wall sadly.

    Despite all that, I've taught hundreds of kids who have loved the experience. Watched kids develop in a fairly short time frame from not using their bike because of being scared of falling off, to cycling confidently in primary, covering their brakes whilst staring down a driver who looked like he might just shoot across that junction ahead of them.

    It can be very rewarding for both the kids and instructors. It can also be soul destroying.

    Its easy to blame "bikeability" because it isn't a perfect programme, but its the way its administered (certainly in edinburgh) that is choking it. Active Schools isn't just not the best method of delivery, I am yet to be convinced its even an appropriate one.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. biketrain
    Member

    Looking to get my Children ages 12 and 14 on a bikeability course. Unfortunately their school does not offer any cycle training a present. Does anyone know where I could sign them up for an independent course, ideally Livingston or Edinburgh?

    Posted 3 months ago #

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