What is Bikeability?
Bikeability is the new cycling training scheme for the 21st Century which aims to get more people cycling, more safely, more often.
Cycling is healthy and fun but many people are reluctant to cycle because they have a perception that it is unsafe. In fact, the health benefits of cycling far outweigh the risks, and cyclists, on average, live longer than non-cyclists.
Many thousands of children across the country now have the chance to undergo a Bikeability training award as part of this national scheme, and Shropshire Council is an accredited provider. In Shropshire it is our aim that every child leaving primary school at the end of year 6 will have had the opportunity to achieve Bikeability level 2.
Bikeability is not just for children; Shropshire Council is happy to teach cycling skills to adults and young people too. We offer free Cycle Confident courses for adults who would like to build up their confidence on a bike. Follow the link to the Travel Shropshire website for more information or to apply for free training.
What courses are on offer in schools?
There are three Bikeability levels:
This concentrates on bike handling skills and takes place off the road in a safe environment such as a school playground. It takes two to four hours and is usually taught as the first session of a level two course. By the end of the course trainees should be able to demonstrate the skills and understanding to make a trip and undertake activities in a traffic-free environment.
This takes place on quiet public roads and concentrates on on-road skills. It takes eight to ten hours and is aimed mainly at year 6 pupils, but year 5 pupils can be included to make numbers viable. By the end of the course trainees should be able to make simple road trips such as the journey to and from school by bicycle.
This is aimed mainly at secondary school pupils but is also suitable for adults. It involves some one-to-one instruction and concentrates on more difficult roads such as roundabouts and dual carriageways. By the end of the course all trainees should be able to discover the full range of their cycling potential.
Who does the instructing?
The training is delivered by a team of directly-employed professional cycle instructors who visit schools, colleges and places of employment to carry it out. The team is equipped with the transport and equipment needed to meet the demands of the location and conditions. Trainees are expected to provide their own roadworthy bikes and helmets, but the team carry spares in case the trainee’s own kit fails safety checks.
How much does it cost?
We charge £15 per trainee for a joint level one and two course, or for a level 3 course. The charge for level one only, or for complete beginners is £7. Children who receive free school meals are not charged. The actual cost of providing a place is approximately £52, so places are heavily subsidised. Occasionally, at quiet times of year, we may reduce the trainee’s contribution to ensure that we keep our diary full all year.
How can I apply for a course?
If you are a parent, please ask your child’s headteacher when the next school course is. If you wish to arrange a course for your school, college or place of employment, or for yourself as an individual, please contact Transport Planning on 01743 253008, or email email@example.com
Want to know more?
Parents - download the attached leaflet with more information about Bikeability training.
Schoolchildren - Follow the link on this page to visit the Bikeability page on the Travel Shropshire website where you can watch a great video about Bikeability training and find out more about what it's like.