Headteacher’s blog: Bike Week

A car-centric lifestyle with parents combining journeys to work with the school run, fears over dangerous roads and more commitments to fit into busier lives have seen numbers of pupils biking to school fall.

On average, pupils live a couple of miles away from the school, yet one in five cars on the road in the morning are doing the school run.

So, encouraging pupils to bike, walk or even scoot will help to reduce congestion and pollution at the school gates.

Bike Week, June 9-17, is helping to make tracks in encouraging young people to bike it, as well as making it a fun activity for the whole family.

Here’s why biking it is something you should make time for in your daily routine:

Up your grades

Research in Denmark has shown students are better able to focus in lessons after using up excess energy on the way to school.

“It is really interesting that the exercise you get from transporting yourself to school reflects on your ability to concentrate for about four hours into the school day,” says Professor Niels Egelund, of Aarhus University.

Developing skills and confidence

We know the biggest concern for parents when it comes to cycling to school is traffic dangers. But cycling to school can help young people develop road safety skills and learn to manage risk – as well as boost confidence due to a new-found independence.

Of course, younger children can be accompanied by an adult, and planning a route together in advance with older ones, finding a quieter road and cycle paths, whereever possible will help – alongside having a practice at the weekend.

Make sure your children know how to deal with any busier junctions or roads by following these cycle tips.

Help your health

Obesity in young people has become a huge concern. An hour of exercise a day is hard to fit in with school, homework, social life and extra-curricular activities. If you find it difficult to commit to a regular sporting activity sport and aren’t the sort to exercise voluntarily, biking to school can help.

Care for your community

More bikers mean fewer cars, this results in less congestion around school, which can then lead to better relationships with our neighbours.

Lastly…it is really good fun

Riding a bike is great fun and encouraging children to find friends to cycle with them will enhance the experience.

We are also incredibly fortunate that we aren’t far from the National Cycling Centre, students can develop their skills, boost confidence and get involved in all sorts of bike related activities for those aged 14-19; they can try out tracks and even take part in a BMX disco!

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