What’s the future of our cycling sessions?

If you would like to join Wheels for Wellbeing’s ‘Zoom Social Chats’ on Mondays at 11am, please email emma@wheelsforwellbeing.org.uk

With no ‘special guest’ but an abundance of furloughed Inclusive Cycling Instructors attending the Social Chat this week, it really was a social chat!


Staff members, volunteers, participants & support workers

The Wheels for Wellbeing team has been up to all sorts! Our volunteer Ellen has been making a banner for a local celebration, and our Director Isabelle has been out cycling on her handcycle for the first time since lockdown started. We also caught up with our Inclusive Cycling Instructors: Max has found himself up in Edinburgh enjoying the peace and quiet of a usually busy city, and Florence has been juggling educating and working from home. Our Herne Hill Session Manager Emma (who hosts the Zoom Social Chats) and Fundraising Officer Liz have been continuing with their 2.6 Challenge. Liz also shared her excitement of her cat returning home after going missing in January 2019!

What about our regular Social Chat attendees? William (pictured below and in the blog post thumbnail) is one of our regular Herne Hill Velodrome participants, and he’s itching to get back out on his own bicycle. We are working to put something in place so that he can enjoy cycling in his community again. Dayo is a furloughed support worker who’s hopeful about getting back to work very soon – and cycling with his client, Daniel (they borrowed 2 bicycles from us just before lockdown, which you can read about here). With the Government’s announcements over the weekend about the changes to exercise guidelines and that £2 billion will be spent on walking and cycling, we’re hopeful that cycling will become easier for people over the next couple of months.


Re-starting our inclusive cycling sessions

Interestingly, another one of our Inclusive Cycling Instructors gave us an update about her working situation at one of the SEND schools in Lambeth. That led us onto a discussion about the delivery of our inclusive cycling sessions in the future. Isabelle and Emma were in talks with other inclusive cycling providers last week (Bikeworks, Pedal Power, Cycling Projects, Companion Cycling & EcoLocal), and there’s no doubt that for the foreseeable future we won’t be able to run our open sessions as they were before. If you’ve ever been to our Tuesday sessions at Croydon Sports Arena, you’ll know that both the track and the area where the cycles are stationed get super busy – social distancing will be impossible under those circumstances!

We need to make sure that our inclusive cycling sessions are safe, with minimum risk of our participants, support workers, family members, volunteers and staff members contracting the virus. To ensure this, we see the provision of our inclusive cycling sessions in the future potentially being as follows:

  • Booking system with timed slots
  • Booking specific cycles
  • 1-to-1 ‘lessons’
  • Small group sessions (e.g. members of a residential home)
  • Family group sessions
  • Booking venues for a longer period
  • Installing Perspex partitions on side-by-side and VeloPlus cycles
  • Masks and gloves
  • General good hygiene for people and cycles!
  • (If you have any further ideas, please do get in touch with Emma: emma@wheelsforwellbeing.org.uk)

We will also be in discussion with our cycling venues over the next couple of weeks, as they too will be drawing up plans to open with safety and hygiene measures being foremost on their minds.

Fingers crossed we’ll all be cycling this summer!

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