About the Bikeability Scheme
Every year, junior schools in Medway are offered the chance to book cyclist training courses that meet level two of the National Standard for Cyclist Training.
These courses are delivered within school hours, taking place at your child’s school. If your child’s school does not book a place please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Bikeability is a cycle training programme which can help to develop practical skills and understanding to keep children safe when cycling on the road. It also gives them the confidence to get out and about with all kinds of cycling.
Bikeability is practical and professional training which aims to leave cyclists more skilled and confident once they’ve taken part.
Who can take part
Children must be a minimum of 10 years of age and be able to ride their bike without stabilisers.
If your child achieves a Level 1 standard in the playground assessment the training will then be on the public highway. For this reason your written consent and your child’s commitment to good behaviour is needed.
Children will not be permitted to take part in the training without these.
What you'll need
All cyclists and instructors will be issued with high visibility safety wear. All cyclists must have their own cycle helmet and roadworthy bike.
Instructors will not carry out bike repairs. Most bike shops offer a free bike checking service which we would encourage you to use. To avoid disappointment please contact your local shop to book.
These local shops offer a free bike checking service:
- Halfords: 01634 829 091
- The Bike Warehouse: 01634 571 093
- Create The Way: 01634 799 803
Bikes will be checked as part of Level 1 and if considered unsafe by the instructor, training cannot take place.
In the interest of safety for all, we reserve the right to decline training to any child who cannot physically control their bike or if it is felt that your child's behaviour is affecting the safety of the scheme or others enjoyment.
What your child will learn
Your child will need to demonstrate the following:
- ride your bike using the gears (if it has them)
- make your bike go where you want it to, including moving around objects safely
- control the bike with one hand while signalling the correct way
- stop quickly if needed
- look all around you when you’re riding, including behind, without wobbling
You can use bikes without gears on this training but it will make it harder for your child.
There are three Bikeability levels, each designed to improve cycling skills for all levels of experience. Levels 1, 2 and 3 take trainees from the basics of balance and control, all the way to planning and making an independent journey on busier roads.
At Level 1 new riders learn to control and master their bikes in a space away from traffic such as a playground or closed car park. Trainees will usually be trained in a group of 3 to 12, though individual training may also be available in your area.
At Level 1 trainees can:
- prepare themselves and their bike for cycling
- get on and off their bike without help
- start off, pedal and stop with control
- pedal along, use gears and avoid objects
- look all around and behind, and control the bike
- share space with pedestrians and other cyclists
Level 2 takes place on local streets, giving trainees a real cycling experience. Trainees learn how to deal with traffic on short journeys such as cycling to school or the local shops. Trainees are usually trained in small groups – up to 6 trainees per instructor – though individual training may also be available.
At Level 2 trainees can:
- prepare for on-road cycling
- start and finish an on-road journey
- recognise typical hazards
- let others know what they are about to do
- know where to ride on the road
- pass parked vehicles and side roads
Level 3 gives trainees the skills for more challenging roads and traffic situations – busier streets, queuing traffic, complex junctions and roundabouts. It also includes planning routes for safe cycling. Level 3 training is delivered one-to-one or in groups of up to 3 so can be tailored to a trainee’s individual needs, such as a route to work or school.
At Level 3 trainees can:
- prepare for a journey
- understand advanced road positioning
- pass queuing traffic
- perceive and deal with hazards
- understand driver blind spots
- react to hazardous road surfaces
More about cycling in Medway.