KIDS and adults get the two wheeled vibe in cycle workshops

12 April 2022

Almost 40 kids and adults from across the Central Goldfields developed new found confidence in our “Better on a Bike” workshops in Maryborough this Autumn. The workshops were organised by CMRT and funded by the Central Goldfields Shire Council.

CMRT President and workshop maestro, Janice Simpson, reports from the frontline.

Safe riding ‘like screwing a lid on a jar’

Teaching adult riders with more than a few kilometres under their belt how to turn right on a bike? Yep – and kids learnt how to do it too. Slow, narrow turns, like screwing a lid on a jar.

That’s one skill I developed during our three Safe Riding Workshops in Maryborough yesterday run by Cycling Safe’s Stephen Taylor.

After the women’s session, 16 kids turned up with their mums and dads. Ages ranged from 6 to 13, bikes ranged from barely rideable to super smooth well-kept machines, but one thing all kids had in common was dedication to gaining knowledge.

Watching them learn to snake through a slalom course, turn proficiently, keep a safe distance from others and ride a straight line was wonderful. I saw immediate improvements and was blown away by the kids’ concentration on the tasks to hand. Oh, and we had fun, too!

We finished the session with fast races along the fireman’s track, five at a time, several heats. A chain came unstuck, sweat was produced, someone turned back halfway down the course to improve his chances of winning – he didn’t – but that wasn’t the point.

The point of the workshops was to improve skills so people can feel more confident on their bikes and so get on them more often. We achieved that in spades.

Bicycle maintenance: something everyone can do

We had another eager community turnout on 17 March for the “Better on a Bike” kickoff workshop on bicycle maintenance. A friendly and experienced crew, led by Maryborough cycling identity, Atrel Turner, helped more than 10 adults and kids get on top of very handy skills like chain cleaning and repairing a puncture.

A big thanks too to the crew at the Maryborough Lions Club who hosted the event and then served up a delicious lunch. Hungry work all that working with spanners, pumps and tyre levers.

Bike touring: workshop coming soon in May

Coming soon in May is the fifth workshop in the “Better on a Bike” series, a two-hour deep dive into the joys of bicycle touring. Janice Simpson is a seasoned bicycle tourer across several continents. Janice will pass on tips on how to use online maps and plan a route, pick the most suitable accommodation, lightweight packing, plus two-wheel travel essentials, and how to have fun en route.