Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Bike Camp = Boy Joy

James loves bikes and being independent. Even though he adores his Christmas bicycle from several years back, he hasn't been riding it as much as we both hoped. There was the matter of escaping me in the park, where we'd gone to ride (and then not wanting to ride back) and the fact that his low muscle tone makes bike riding both a challenge and a safety concern.

Cone Zone for Cycling Without Limits

Lately, he's grown so fast he's probably outgrown his original bike. When he persists in riding it, the training wheels start to bend up, he's so big now. I have to constantly stop him to tighten the bolts. His balance is way off too, and his hand-eye coordination not steady enough to make bike riding really confident. What's a kid (and parent) to do?

Enter Cycling Without Limits, a wonderful summer bike camp program put on at Sonoma State University, in partnership with Dr. Elaine Hughes (Kinesiology Department) and some of her Saturday Sidekicks crew, and Ann Elias from Cerebral Palsy, and some wonderful volunteers who've come up with some truly inventive ways to get special needs kids and adults up and biking.

Specially modified bike for campers

James and I attended the first class yesterday. Oh my heavens, the look of pure joy that lit up his face! As a parent, you live for these moments - they are so worth what it takes to get there.

He had trouble getting started, fighting putting on a helmet and riding a new bike. Before long, however, his team had figured how to get him moving. One buddy the special rear handle to guide him around a track in the large gym while another ran backwards in front of him, calling for him to come catch her. Off her went! After three laps, he was able to start and stop on his own power.

Getting used to things

Look at him go! I had trouble getting him without a blur.
Thank you, thank you! Go, James, go!

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