An Aldergrove family will launch a unique peer-led youth cycling program for riders ages 10 to 18 this spring.
PEDAL Adventures — a host of Cycling BC’s iRide Sprockids mountain bike initiative for intermediate riders ages 6 to 10 — has empowered experienced young adult riders to participate in designing the skills-based program.
“We are the only cycling group in the Fraser Valley that has a peer coaches program,” said Warren England, program director and coach for PEDAL Adventures and a Scouts leader for over six years.
Warren and his wife, Linda, will lead the new program which starts Apr. 4 and runs 10-weeks for intermediate riders on Thursday nights at 6 p.m.
“It gets the youth involved in shaping their community,” said England, explaining that peer coaches inspire riders to master new techniques out of sheer admiration for their superiors.
The PEDAL Adventures program acronym encapsulates five core principles: physical fitness, environmental stewardship, discovery, adventure and leadership, which are in alignment with Scouts Canada and Cycling BC’s National Coaching Certification Program, the coach lauded.
Three adventure-packed mountain bike groups will be hosted at the Bike Park at the Aldergrove Athletic Park, located on 27 Ave. and 267B St. In addition to teaching mountain bike riding skills, the program will also teach repair, maintenance and safety skills to the youth, England said.
The initiative utilizes various features of the bike park including table top rides, progression jumps, the perimetre pump track, balancing beams and the wall ride. The coach also aims to organize at least two outdoor excursions to locations aside from the park.
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Younger cyclers — ages 6 to 10 — can enlist in returning six-week programs that run starting Apr. 3 and May 15 on Wednesdays at 6 p.m.
Cycling BC iRide Sprockids and peer leaders are trained under the Coaches Association of Canada’s NCCP coach program, provided by Cycling BC, including the skill-games used at iRide’s in-school program.
Cranky’s Bike Shop offers special discounts for riders involved in the program. Aldergrove’s local Home Hardware has also stepped up to sponsor the purchase of much-need equipment for the club.
PEDAL Adventures is a recipient of an iRide Development Grant, on behalf of Cycling BC, and received training and support to start-up the initiative last spring.
Riders must first be registered with Cycling BC prior to their admittance into the group.
Interested bikers can learn more and register for the upcoming sessions at www.pedaladventures.ca. The cost for the six-week program is 60$, and $175 for the 10-week club for older riders.