Project promotes pedalling

Children from 15 kindergartens and early learning centres across the Macedon Ranges were taught vital bike skills (Unsplash).

Macedon Ranges kindergarten students have learnt bike riding skills through a state government-funded initiative that aims to improve community health.

As part of the ongoing Healthy Loddon Campaspe initiative, 15 kindergartens and early learning centres in Kyneton, Riddells Creek, and Gisborne were involved in a program that aimed to improve bike riding skills and confidence among children.

The program included sessions from a bike education organisation, where students were taught how to correctly fit and wear a helmet, essential riding skills, and road safety awareness.

Funding through the program also purchased 42 new balance bikes, 180 new helmets, road crossing safety play kits, and new bike racks outside 12 kinders and early learning centres to promote bike riding as a mode of transport.

Healthy Loddon Campaspe coordinator Alicia O’Brien said that providing bike education and infrastructure will help to improve children’s health in the Macedon Ranges.

“Providing bike equipment and small infrastructure, as well as fundamental bike education in early learning settings across the Macedon Ranges, will increase children’s bike riding confidence from an early age,” Ms O’Brien said.

“Active travel, such as bike riding, contributes significantly to children’s daily physical activity.”

The Healthy Loddon Campaspe initiative began in 2018 in response to statistics revealing that the region recorded higher rates of obesity, chronic disease, and high-risk health behaviours than the state average.

Oscar Parry