Wheely Tots proposed parent and toddler balance bike sessions during the Easter and Summer holidays.Through funding from TfL Cycling Grants London, they are now helping families in Haringey enjoy a healthy activity which encourages toddlers (aged 2-4) to get into cycling, and significantly increase the chances of it being a part of their life in the future.
The sessions take place at Lordship Recreation Ground in a neighbouring borough, chosen as it offers a unique road system which can improve awareness of road safety for the toddlers and parents. A typical session consists of 10 minutes of parent-led bike and helmet adjustment, introductions and warm up, 25 minutes of an activity ranging from drawing to cycling with multi-coloured cones, followed by 10 minutes to warm down, exchange information, socialise and have some water and snacks.
Wheely Tots run six sessions each day during the holidays, with the ideathat parents would sign up for a daily session for a week. Mid-week they also have a bike mechanic to maintain any parents’ bikes and so increase their confidence in cycling with their children.
There can be a lack of parents owning balance bikes and helmets and so these sessions can provide them for the toddlers .With continual attendance it is hoped that this will dispel the idea that cycling is a high-risk activity, and raise confidence for parents and toddlers.
The programme engages with its’ target group via leaflets, social media, adverts in local shops and facilities; and through word of mouth. Wheely Tots is looking to be more financially sustainable and they are capturing valuable information to achieve this. They are hoping this project and similar ones could be completely funded by donations from parents in the future.