GREEN2014: FREE workshops… The Reluctant Commuter Cyclist

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As part of GREEN2014 we are organising a set of workshops to help you get confident on your bike. Together with Bikestation Glasgow we’ll be running area specific workshops to give you a gentle nudge towards commuting by bike…Book your free place below:

Glasgow North 10 July 12-1 pm
Glasgow South 10 July 1-2 pm
Glasgow East 17 July 12-1pm
Glasgow West 17 July 1-2pm

Before the event we caught up with Gerry Mitchell who will be delivering the workshops.

I’ve not been on a bike for a number of years and I’m afraid of getting in to traffic. What can you do to help me gain confidence?

If you have not cycled for a number of years, or if you are new to cycling, we can help you gain cycle confidence in a variety of ways. If you come along to the Reluctant Commuter sessions we can sign you up for FREE Bikeability cycle training sessions which can help you gain cycle skills and build confidence in your cycling ability. We have 3 different Bikeability levels; beginners, intermediate and advanced cycling levels. These 3 levels are designed to teach people who have never cycled before, up to those who are confident cyclists but require some additional support to build confidence on the road.

Bike commuting in Scotland – that has to be a recipe for being permanently soaked isn’t it?

Very occasionally, yes. But cycling in the rain can be a lovely refreshing experience too! Having said that, you will also find that you will not get wet on your bike as often as you think. A statistic from a recent British Cycling analysis found that you have a 90% chance of staying dry whilst cycling in the UK. It is always worth remembering that you can also do lots to prepare for those wet days, such as get yourself some waterproofs, put mudguards on your bike, and, if it gets too rainy, stop and shelter in a nice cafe until the rain passes.

Why should I pick the bike rather than a warm, comfy car?

There are many reasons for choosing a bike over the car. Firstly, counter to popular thinking, the bike can be faster than the car, especially in highly congested areas of the city. Secondly, cycling is good for your health and is a cheaper form of transport, especially if you consider that you can save on spending on fuel and also give up your monthly gym fee by incorporating cycling into your daily workout. Finally, getting around by bike will dramatically reduce your carbon footprint. You will be contributing to the reduction of carbon emissions in the city, making Glasgow’s air cleaner in the process.

I can’t afford lots of fancy gear – do I really need special clothes?

Not necessarily, most commuting journeys can be taken in your day to day attire If you cycle at an average pace. A good waterproof jacket is always handy but you don’t need to go overboard with a head to toe Lycra outfit. Comfortable clothes are fine.

Why should I come to your workshop? What will I get out of it?

All of the services we offer during the Reluctant Commuter course are FREE and are designed to help you make that first step towards cycling with confidence, or to increase your confidence as a cyclist. We will offer you all the help necessary to achieve this during the workshop. We will help you plan the safest and most pleasant journey from A to B. We will provide you with the opportunity to sign up for cycle training lessons to increase your ability as a cyclist, and you can also borrow a bike for up to 2 weeks when you are ready. Finally we will provide you with hints and tips on bike maintenance. We also have advice and assistance on how you can purchase a discounted bike through the various government bike purchase schemes. All in all we have something for everyone, so come along to find out more.

We look forward to seeing you at one of the events soon! We have organised these workshops by geographical area to help with routefinding, but if you are unable to make the workshop for the area you are cycling in, you are welcome at any of the others.

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