It can be frustrating on a morning when you’ve been sat in the car for an hour on the motorway and you’ve only moved one mile closer to work… That’s why on Wednesday 17 August, you’re being encouraged to ditch the driving for Cycle to Work Day.
Cycle to Work Day is the UK’s biggest cycle commuting event – and it’s easy to see why. Cycling has many benefits, including being good for your health, fun to take part in, and helping you to spend a bit more time outdoors. One person who knows just how good cycling is for you is Jacci Sharp, occupational therapist, who has been helping service users in our forensic services to take part in Cycling UK’s Cycle 4 Health course.
She explained: “It’s been great working with our service users and Cycling UK to help build people’s fitness and get them together in a group activity. We started by cycling around the Newton Lodge sports hall, then moved onto the Fieldhead site, then progressed to canals, cycle paths and Thornes Park Stadium in Wakefield.
“It’s been hugely beneficial to the people involved – one person said that it had helped him to keep going when he was struggling with his mental health. It also helped me to find my love of cycling – I do other fitness activities but this gave me more awareness of different ways of staying fit and active.
“For a lot of people, transport is an issue so learning these cycling skills breaks down a barrier to getting about. People have learnt how to safely get on and off the bikes and how to use gears and respond to road conditions. The best thing about it is that people are out and about actually doing the activity so they’re learning without realising. We’re now offering the course through our Wakefield and Five Towns recovery college and I’d recommend it to anyone looking to increase their cycling confidence.”