Cycle education happens inside and outside your classroom.
To arrange cycle skills training, follow a series of simple steps:
Having a lead teacher organise this for a syndicate or school is a time-saver. You can also plan cycle skills training delivery across a Community of Learning | Kahui Ako so student learning progresses through their school years. The lead teacher coordinates with instructors before, during and after visits to school. For example, discussing practical matters such as where to run Grade 1 (on school grounds) and Grade 2 (local streets with low traffic levels).
Each classroom teacher might deliver curriculum activities selected to fit with their student needs and interests. Teachers may be requested to be present during training sessions to help with positive behaviour and giving feedback to students. BikeReady curriculum resources are available for classroom lessons. Classroom learning aligned to the NZ Curriculum helps students to become problem solvers who discuss, experiment and create resources that develop a deeper understanding of safe riding.
Cycle skills training for schools and curriculum resources are free.
This depends on the local training provider in each region. The minimum requirements are:
Grade 1: Year 4+
Grade 2: Year 6+
Grade 3: Year 9+
In some cases, the training provider may be able to provide bikes and helmets, or students can bring their own roadworthy bike and approved helmet to school for the training sessions. Please check with your local provider to see what they have available.
Bikes must be in a roadworthy condition and meet legal requirements. Instructors will check the safety of each bike in the first session. Students take part in the bike check — it's an important skill to learn. BMX bikes are okay.
As a starting point, each bike should be the right size for the rider, have pumped up tyres, two working brakes and a red or yellow rear reflector.
Students need to wear a bicycle helmet when riding a bike. The helmet must be the right size and shape for their head and correctly fitted. It should be standards approved. Students may wear their normal clothes or PE gear. Raincoats are handy. Avoid clothes that get in the way or can be unsafe: long loose skirts, jerseys tied around waists, long laces, baggy trousers and open toed shoes.
Check with your provider the day before if bad weather is forecast. Cycle skills training sessions may still run. The instructors will make a final decision and could schedule a new time in the event of very bad weather.
Only students who can demonstrate all the core competencies and outcomes for Grade 1 may progress to Grade 2 training. The minimum age for grade 2 is Year 6. Some regions may require students to be in year 7. If an individual missed Grade 1, there is a chance they could be assessed during the first Grade 2 session, but this would be at the discretion of the local training provider.
Yes, most people can take part in cycle education to the best of their abilities. Teachers should talk to their local provider about students with a disability or health or behavioural needs so that training can be tailored to their strengths.
Around New Zealand, professional instructors deliver a range of cycle skills courses. Courses vary by region and are based on national good practice guidelines. The aim is to help more people progress towards making trips by bike. Instructors can help beginners with bike handling skills and commuters and recreational riders with on road skills.
The BikeReady website provides advice on road rules, e-bikes, looking after your bike and on-road riding. It pulls together the knowledge of cycling experts, so you can start learning right now.
Take it gradually — both in terms of fitness and bike handling skills. Start somewhere away from roads, such as a park, cycleway or schoolyard in the weekend. This lets you focus on balance and bike control without having traffic to think about.
BikeReady recommends you build your skills and confidence on a standard push bike before investing in an e-bike (these are heavier and faster so take a little getting used to).
Use the Find a Provider button on this website to look into cycle skills courses that prepare you for on-road riding. Plus follow BikeReady's essential advice:
Borrow a bike from a friend or family member and give it a go, in a quiet off-road location. Ask someone to come along as a support person. Find a quiet place with flat ground away from all traffic. You can also look out for public events where you can try a bike. Instructors may be on hand with advice.
BikeReady explains how to learn to ride:
Yes, but nice and slow please. Shared paths are for bike riders and people walking. The pace is relaxed. Put your e-bike in a low power setting and go slow enough that people feel comfortable when you pass. More advice here:
Cycle skills training includes classroom lessons, so any students can benefit from these. They will need basic balance and bike control before doing Grade 1 cycle skills training, however many local providers can accommodate children who can’t yet balance. Tips on helping your child learn to ride a bike are found in the Parents section. Keep your eyes out for community courses for beginners or teach your child yourself.
Here are some tips:
Taking part in cycle skills training helps your child get the skills and experience to enjoy bike riding for life. Cycle skills training provides an introduction but it is just a start. Most students will require more practice and experience before they are ready to ride on the road unsupervised. You can encourage your child to get more experience. Go for rides with them, talk about safe routes to school, friend's houses or the shops. Join a local club, such as a sport cycling club, mountain biking or BMX club.
First check to see whether cycle skills training is available in your region on the find a training provider tab. If it is, ask the teachers / kaiako at your school or kura if they are planning to have cycle skills training. If not, ask a local provider if they run courses for families
Feedback is warmly welcomed. Please contact your school or local cycle skills training provider to talk about education and training that your child has taken part in. If you have feedback about BikeReady in general, you can contact the national coordinator.