Cycling to School: The Benefits

Children cycling

Cycling is a fun and exciting way to work out one’s body. It is important for school kids and should be encouraged more since kids nowadays rather spend more time in front of screens rather than outside playing and exercising. People of all ages can enjoy cycling, but learning to ride from a young age will equip children with a skill for life.  Cycling to school is a good starting point to get children out and about and on their bikes. Providing cycle parking at majority of schools in the area will encourage more pupils to ride to school. For children that may not be confident on their bikes or are new to cycling, the Bikeability Scheme is a good starting point. Bikeability is a government recognised cycle training scheme with three levels from basic skills of riding a bike to more advanced training of cycling on roads and busy streets. The Bikeability website provides some great resources to encourage children to get our on their bikes. Below are a few benefits of cycling to school:

  • Encourages independence and builds confidence
  • Good for the environment
  • Reduces congestion – especially around school gates, making it safer
  • Provides an active start to the day, children will be more alert in lessons

Experts say that to stay fit, children need at least one hour of moderate physical activity every day (for example, brisk walking or cycling). But only six out of ten boys and four out of ten girls get that.

Fitness and health

TV and computer games may be part of the problem. Another is the habit we’ve developed of driving our children to school and social events, over distances that would have been walked or cycled by previous generations. Cycling is one of the best forms of exercise you can get. Doctors say that adults who cycle regularly have, on average, the fitness levels of people ten years younger. A more active lifestyle now, continued into adulthood, would greatly improve your child’s chance of living a long and healthy life. Physical inactivity is a far greater cause of heart disease than smoking, yet we take it much less seriously. Daily exercise has many immediate benefits as well. They include improved bone strength, muscle tone, healthier joints, increased alertness and improved academic performance. Teachers often comment that children who walk or cycle to school arrive brighter and more ready to learn than those driven by car, and a recent US study showed a positive link between physical activity and performance in school tests.

Independence

By allowing children to make their own way to school you can help them to become more confident and independent, which is especially important in the transition from primary to secondary school. The school journey is an ideal opportunity for children to learn road safety awareness and other life skills. For many children, cycling is simply more fun and more sociable than going to school by car, and they love the feeling of freedom it gives them. We know the benefits, so what’s stopping us from letting our kids cycle? Safety is the number one worry for many parents. Fortunately, serious accidents involving child cyclists are rare – much less common than those involving child pedestrians or car passengers. Fewer than 20 per cent of all road accidents involving primary school children occur on the journey to school.

Environment

When it comes to purchasing cycle shelters and school bike sheds, it’s very important to carefully consider all of your options before you order a model from a company. This article looks at the most important properties of quality cycle shelters to help you choose the right one for your outside space. Cycling to school is an easy way to get children on their bikes and provides an active start to the day. It also means that less time will be spent in queues and looking for a parking space at the school gates. It also ultimately means a lot less money will be spent transporting your kids to school and back. Offering more cycle parking solutions within schools can encourage children to use their bikes. The increase in facilities provides a secure place to park cycles. And having a safe spot to park bikes will encourage more use among kids.

CycleShelters.com offer a wide range of cycle shelters perfect for schools. We help schools everyday to install high quality, cost effective and secure cycle shelters. Have a look at our great range here.

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