REVIEW : LIKE2BIKE MTB4KIDS EVENTS
We found out about the Like2Bike series around this time last year, and to be honest I think we’ve all been hooked and look forward to the next event.
By hooked, I believe it’s mostly because our son loves roughing it out on his bike. Seeking adventure out in the “wild” puts the most amazing smile on his face. Honestly, when we’re out and his on his bike he’s in his element.
Prior to Like2Bike we’d take him to the local bike park or let him ride his bike around the complex. After a while, we could not ignore that it was all becoming mundane not only for him but for us too. The constant riding around in circles wasn’t adding to his development on the bike.
He was hungry for more.
I can’t believe they’ve been around for 5 years already, but they actually have!
Like2Bike offers both mountain bike and duathlon(Run-Cycle-Run) events for kids from the age of 2-14. They create amazing opportunities for parents to get their kids outdoors and soak up the fresh air, experiencing the trails our concrete jungle has to offer!
Essentially they are an events company specializing in promoting and organizing kids cycling and running events. Besides the family-friendly MTB4Kids events that they arrange, they also hold cycling skills clinics, with the aim to nurture early cycling development and skills.
“IT’S NOT THE MOUNTAIN THAT WE CONQUER…BUT OURSELVES” – Sir Edmund Hillary
We’ve now been to a number of the Like2Bike events across Joburg since last year. Our son gushes post the rides. He is loving that he can go as “mad” on the trails as he likes, within the guidelines set by the organizers of course, but more importantly, he gets to be on the bike for much longer than usual.
Having supported both hubby and me at running or cycling events in the past, he adores the fact that he gets to earn his own medals at these events.
The routes host a wonderful balance of both easy and some challenge for the kids … and in many instances for the parents that either cycle or run along with the kids through the route. That’s what we love about these events! Up until the 5km distance, parents are permitted to tag along much to the relieve of both the parents and many of the kids I’m sure. I do believe that now there’s a 10km distance for the more adventurous kids that parents can ride along with.
I can see us entering the 10km in the not so distant future.
Darren normally runs along with the son at these events, I think I’ve run at one event and swore that I am very content supporting from the sideline. It all looks pretty easy until you’re supporting your child through the race route.
At the event this past weekend I loved watching the kids faces. There’s so much determination. So much eagerness to excel too. You can’t help but soak the whole morning in and appreciate that we have these opportunities right at our doorstep.
The Like2Bike FUNdamentals Clinics are hosted to give our kids bike skills, confidence and a grounding in safety while they ride their bikes, not just at the races but any other day they might find themselves on a trail with mom and/or dad.
FUNdamental clinics are ideal for ages 4+ and help the kids garner skills like safety, bike control. respect and appreciation for the bike they’re on. At the clinic, the kids learn about:
- BIKE SAFETY CHECK
- ENSURE CORRECT BIKE SIZE
- RULES OF THE TRAIL/ROAD
- RESPECT YOUR BIKE
- BIKE SETUP
- HELMET INSPECTION
- SKILLS DRILLS
I promise you that even as a parent you may just learn a thing or two at the clinics.
Once they’ve completed the drill the kids go off onto one of the routes at the venue and put into practice all that they’ve learnt during the drills. It’s really loads of fun, even from the sideline I promise.
BENEFITS OF MOUNTAIN BIKING FOR KIDS
Mountain biking fights depression, builds confidence, and increases self-esteem, many scientists agree that exercise is an effective treatment for many mood disorders and is definitely better treatment, and is significantly as effective as most pharmaceutical and psychological interventions.
Nurture socialization skills and build friendships, teaching them the importance of trail etiquette and how to be a part of a team. A skill they can implement in all areas of their lives.
Develop decision making, risk, and safety skills. They learn how to deal with challenges they encounter while riding out on the trails. For example, the will quickly learn the consequences of choosing the wrong trail path, how to focus on what’s essential as their surroundings whiz by.
It keeps them out of trouble and from spending too much time with technology.
It’s an amazing concept and I’m extremely thrilled to learn that there are new races being added to their calendar this year. More opportunities to spend time outdoors as a family and for our son to harness his passion for Mountain Biking.
Events are held in safe venues.
Entering these events is super easy.
Smish Burge and Kirsty Searle have developed something amazing here!
Check out our FB page for some of their other events happening in Jozi or even in Cape Town and Pretoria too!