The West Lothian Cycle Circuit will be the perfect safe space for anyone new to cycling to build up their skills and confidence says Melanie Toner, the Participation Programmes Officer at Scottish Cycling
One of our strategic aims at Scottish Cycling is to grow the number of women and girls involved in cycling. The Breeze programme is helping us do this, by supporting more women to (re)discover the joys of cycling. Nothing beats that feeling of freedom on your bike, with (hopefully) the wind at your back and the sun on your face.
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Our volunteer ride leaders, known as Breeze Champions, support women in their local communities to ride their bikes by offering friendly, supported led rides. However, we’re engaging with women who already know how to ride a bike and feel confident enough to join a ride. There is a step before this for many women (and men) who’ve never learned to ride a bike, or it was so long ago they doubt they will remember how to, despite what the famous phrase says!
A purpose-built cycle-circuit, free from traffic, fenced and floodlit, provides a safe space for anyone new to cycling to have a go and build up their confidence and skills on a bike, free from the worry of cars, pedestrians, dogs and other hazards. Cycle skills sessions can help new and nervous cyclists to learn the balance and coordination needed for joining led rides and progressing your cycling, whether you want to ride to the shops, to work every day, ride long-distances or enter a sportive or race.
We’d love to work with local clubs and the community at the cycle circuit to support the growth of Let’s Ride participation programmes, including Breeze, and ultimately get more people on bikes.