When did you come to your first Wheels for Wellbeing cycling session?
I came to my first Wheels for Wellbeing cycling session in 2015. I’d found out about the charity the previous year, after lovely Isabelle (the Director) and I were introduced to each other by a mutual friend. I couldn’t believe what Isabelle was telling me about Wheels for Wellbeing – I hadn’t cycled since childhood due to my declining mobility and had thought I would never be able to again. I was so happy and excited we had met, and that adapted cycles existed!
Unfortunately, at the time I was unable to attend a session due to a further injury I was being treated for. This injury eventually led to me having more surgery and throughout my rehabilitation my goal was to start coming along to sessions as soon as I was given the green light by the team involved in my care. I couldn’t stop telling people about it. It was the best feeling ever when I finally got to achieve my goal! I couldn’t believe my luck; it was like a new lease of life!
What difference does cycling make to your life?
Cycling makes me feel completely free. It’s a feeling I’d missed so much over the years!
My health conditions and the severity of my symptoms make me feel very down, but I always feel so much better when I’ve been to a session or taken part in a led ride. It’s just the best group to be a part of and I feel so grateful to be included.
Unfortunately I haven’t been able to attend as often as I’d like due to flare ups of my conditions and following major surgery again last year, I haven’t been able to come back yet. However, I’ve set my rehabilitation goals with my physiotherapist and cycling is top of the list. My physiotherapist remarked that my face lights up when I talk about Wheels for Wellbeing, so she knows how important it is to me.
What would you do if Wheels for Wellbeing didn’t exist/what did you do before you started cycling?
If Wheels for Wellbeing didn’t exist, I would never have got to experience that amazing feeling of freedom again! Before I found out about Wheels for Wellbeing, I used to go to the gym, but if I’m honest I struggled to stick to it because I found it boring, lonely and more of a chore than anything. Wheels for Wellbeing is none of those things; I feel happy, included and proud of my achievements!
Is there any way that we could improve our inclusive cycling service?
There is nothing I could suggest for improvement, I’m so grateful for Wheels for Wellbeing, their hard work makes such a difference to mine and so many others’ lives. I can’t wait to see everyone again; I hope it’s not too long as I really miss everyone!