Adults throughout Argyll and Bute will have the opportunity to sign up to benefit from free cycle training, worth over £100, in the next few weeks. The iCycle+ initiative is aimed at returning and commuter cyclists, helping them enjoy their bike more – getting confident in traffic, learning new bike maintenance skills, meeting other returning cyclists and improving their health and fitness.
A drop-in information event is planned at Lochgilphead Joint Campus on Tuesday 31st March where people can sign up to the training programme in Lochgilphead, with information also available online through the council’s partners in this initiative, the Oban-based outdoor education social enterprise Stramash.
The session involves an introduction and welcome, a short film on the iCycle+ programme, a short description of the training and, most importantly, the opportunity for people to ask questions.
Once a place on the course is guaranteed participants will receive further details from Stramash and a pre-course evaluation form which will be used to shape the content of the courses to suit the needs of individual participants, where possible.
The free training itself runs over a month and involves a session a week in five towns: Lochgilphead in April and May, Oban in June and Dunoon, Helensburgh and Campbeltown in August and September. People can sign up for an afternoon, early evening or night time session and all of the equipment (a bike, helmet etc.) is provided.
Those signing up for the training can expect help in:
- Getting on and off of their bike safely
- Starting off and stopping
- Steering and maintaining forward momentum
- Cycling one handed while signalling
- Looking behind
- The correct use of gears
- Basic bike maintenance and preparing for a journey
Using these new skills cyclists will try out different routes in their community, becoming confident in dealing with tricky junctions and traffic lights. The course will also identify safe and enjoyable cycle routes that can be enjoyed either as part of a group or individually.
At the end of the month long programme there will be a shared, guided cycle which will put into practice the skills learned over the course.
The Lochgilphead sessions are scheduled as follows:
- Week 1 w/b 15 April at Kilmory Castle
- Week 2 w/b 22 April at the Crinan Canal
- Week 3 w/b 29 April at Kilmartin Glen
- Week 4 w/b 6 May at the Kilmory Woodland