Both us have been riding bike for many years and when British Cycling brought Sky Ride - local led rides to encourage more people to cycle, we both jumped at the chance to become Ride Leaders and led local rides in our local areas (at this point we didn't know each other). When the opportunity came along to volunteer as a Breeze champion (women only led rides) in 2013 we jumped at the chance. Vicky became the region's Breeze Coordinator and she had a really successful Breeze program running in North East Lincs. We became friends and she helped me to establish Breeze in North Lincs and we now have 10 amazing ladies who qualified as ride leaders and volunteer and lead rides 2-3 times a week.
Bikewell CIC is a not for profit community organisation run by two local women in Northern Lincolnshire, organising women's specific cycle workshops to encourage more women to cycle and experience the health benefits both physical and mental well-being as well as feeling safe on the roads. Delivered by an experienced British Cycling level 2 Coach you will learn all the skills needed to be confident to cycle on the roads. Practical workshops include how to take your wheels on and off, how to fix a puncture and change an inner tube, what equipment to carry and everything you need to know about the bike and kit. Coached sessions teach you bike handling skills, using gears properly, safety on the road and group riding, all in a safe environment.
Bikewell CiC was launched on International Women's Day on March 8th 2017 as a result of talking to women on Breeze rides who lacked confidence on the roads and had little experience of bike handling and bike maintenance. August will see the first off road cycling course introducing women to Mountain Biking and the fun of off road riding. Further workshops are planned around bike maintenance/cleaning your bike, route planning and much more. The courses are a great way of meeting like-minded women in your local area, and finding out what social rides are happening such as the local Breeze network – British Cycling nation program to get more women cycling.
Previous participants have given us great feedback;
"It was a very informative course with a fun element built into it. This made everyone feel at ease and share their experiences. I have also come away with some new friends to cycle with"
"I was quite nervous to start as I didn't actually have a road bike yet, only a mountain bike but was assured I could still complete the course"
"This course has reduced any stress I had, I feel more confident on the road and in a group and no longer worry about getting a puncture"
The next This Girl Can "Get Pedalling" course will run on Saturday 29th July 2017.
The follow-on course developing your riding skills "Thrills Not Spills" is on Saturday 19th August 2017.
Both courses will take place at The Oasis Academy in Grimsby, north East Lincolnshire, 9am - 3pm and cost £25 per person per course.
Women's Introduction To Mountain Biking is on Saturday 5th August 2017 at a private off road venue in partnership with Vuelta Sport in Kirton Lindsey, North Lincolnshire. The cost of the course is £35 per person.
Booking is essential, places are limited to 10 women to ensure they get a quality experience.
Vicky is a local British Cycling Level 2 coach and currently studying for her Level 3 as well as being a mountain bike, Road and Time Trial discipline specific coach. Vicky volunteers at her local club coaching Go Ride with the children as well as being a Commissaire for Cyclocross. Lindsay works in Sports Development and manages projects that promote and encourage people to take part in physical activity and sport. Lindsay is also an active level 2 swimming instructor.
So many women have said getting involved with cycling has made a massive difference to their lives from fitness, confidence, learning new bike skills, feeling safer on the roads, losing weight, meeting new friends and having a whole new social circle, entering Sportives and some have gone on to join local clubs and start racing. Many have gained new qualifications and got involved with volunteering in their local community. One of the biggest benefits they have told us is cycling has improved their mental well-being and helped reduce stress.
For Vicky, it is amazing women in cycling like Missy Giove the Yeti MTB rider or Shanaze Reade Team GB BMX rider but for Lindsay it is probably my mum who from a very early age encouraged me to take part in all sorts of sports and I would be at a different club every night of the week.
As often we can!
Mental well-being, physical health, social, new skills, meet new people, safer and more enjoyable on the roads, the list goes on.
In March Vicky was awarded East Midlands Coach of the year 2016
For further information and to book a place on any of the courses email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow us on facebook @Bikewellcic