Kids to get cycle-savvy with Bikeability

On 7th September 2006 kids across the country got into the saddle for the launch of Bikeability, the new cycling proficiency standard by Cycling England and the Department for Transport. The scheme marks the biggest upgrade yet in cycle training for today’s children, and comes after a doubling of Government funding for cycling.

Springing into action

Bikeability is being initially trialled with 3000 children across England, ‘gearing up’ for a national rollout of the scheme from Spring 2007 when thousands of children will have a chance to get their Bikeability award.

The training

To get their Bikeability award, children will be instructed on how to ride their bikes to the Bikeability standard, helping them develop the skills essential for cycling on roads. The training will be made up of 3 levels: –

Level 1:
Teaches children to control the bike. To complete Level 1, the child must have shown that they have gained the skills to ride without cars and are ready to start their road training.

Level 2:
Training with traffic, on quiet roads and cycle lanes.

Level 3:
At Level 3, the child will be taught to ride safely on busy roads, using advanced road features. This will usually be taken after the child has started secondary school.

The Bikeability award consists of a certificate, badge, booklet and a letter to parents.

A long-term vision

Phillip Darnton, Chairman of Cycling England, said:

“Bikeability will give children (and adults) the necessary skills and knowledge needed to cycle safely throughout the rest of their life. But Bikeability is more than just teaching children to ride a bike. It’s also about introducing them to cycling as an everyday activity – an alternative mode of transport, an enjoyable pastime, which brings a healthier lifestyle and is ultimately lots of fun.

Our long-term vision is that in five years, no child in England should leave primary school without having the opportunity to achieve their Bikeability.”

We say:

LCC considers cycle training essential for the promotion of safe cycling amongst kids and adults, and is promoting Cycle Training to National Standards as the solution for cyclists who lack the confidence to tackle London’s busy roads. Cycle training is also LCC’s response to the Mayor’s current Share the Road campaign.