Play Together on Pedals helps families get pedal ready!
16 June 2018
New Edinburgh based project to get more pre-school children and families active.
Families across Edinburgh will be helped to get pedal ready through a unique programme supporting pre-school children and their families, as they’re encouraged to get active together on the cycle paths of the city.
Funded by Transport Scotland, Play Together on Pedals is a collaborative programme designed by the partners - Cycling Scotland, Cycling UK and Play Scotland – to engage children and their families in cycling activities. Launched in Edinburgh on Saturday, 14 June during the Edinburgh Festival of Cycling, all the partners were keen to talk about the benefits of a playful approach to developing active vital life skills early in childhood.
Cherie Morgan, Strategy and Development Manager at Play Scotland commented “We know that balance bikes are a playful and effective way for children to develop their co-ordination and balance skills. Cycling together with parents and carers helps playful families build memories and spend fun time together.”
Building on Glasgow’s successful Play Together on Pedals pre-school programme which has helped teach more than 8,000 children to ride a bike so far, the programme in Edinburgh will work with families across the capital to help them start pedalling together.
Alongside the playful programme offered to children in nurseries to get them on two wheels, the project will encourage parents and families to give cycling a go through try out sessions and drop in activities. The project will offer small grants to enable community organisations to be involved, opportunities for local cycling groups to train volunteers and use the expertise and experience of families already pedalling with little ones to help families new to cycling.
Suzanne Forup, Head of Development Scotland for Cycling UK said, “We’re delighted that we’re able to bring Play Together on Pedals to Edinburgh, building on the work we’ve done with nurseries and community organisations in Glasgow.
“As a parent new to cycling with children it can be daunting trying to work out what equipment is needed and which routes are suitable and feel safe. We’re hoping to help more parents start exploring the city on two or three wheels, encourage them to leave the car at home for short journeys and enjoy being active together.”
Professor Chris Oliver of the University of Edinburgh’s Physical Activity for Health Research Centre said: “Play Together on Pedals is a great programme, engaging children at a young age and using their enthusiasm to get parents on two wheels too. If we’re going to really tackle Scotland’s health crisis we need more families being active everyday.”
Maureen Kidd, Chair of Cycling Scotland said: “Parents play a really crucial role in encouraging children to continue cycling and making cycling a habit for the whole family. We’re looking forward to working in partnership to help families access the fun as well as the practical benefits of cycling.”