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Tiny Tots Saddle Up for Balanceability Programme

24/03/2014

Local nursery children saddled up to join a Glasgow Life Balanceability class in the inspirational surrounding of the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome.

 

The tiny tots, from nearby London Road Nursery, tried out the specifically designed pedal-less bikes. Balanceability is a ‘learn to cycle’ programme, which is designed for children under 6, and is the first step in learning the balance, co-ordination and stability needed to ride a bike. By teaching the youngsters these core skills it is hoped that they will go on to learn to ride a bike and be inspired to lead healthy and active lives as they grow up. The legacy from this is already being seen as a number of the children involved in the programme have started to access other physical opportunities at the Emirates Arena including mini kickers football and gymnastics.    

 

It’s not only the children who benefit from the Balanceability class - 85% of the parents of the children involved in the programme had never been to the Emirates Arena before. They have been offered a number of incentives to keep them coming back to their local facility. This includes a tour of the Emirates Arena on their first visit with their little Sir Chris Hoy hopeful. Parents are then offered access to a Glasgow Club gym membership, sessions on the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, the chance to watch a Glasgow Rocks game and even a relaxation experience in the fantastic Refresh Spa.

 

The Balanceability programme has also offered a number of Glasgow Life staff to the opportunity for career development – 10 members of the Emirates Arena staff have been up skilled to teach the programme and there are 14 Glasgow Life staff trained to deliver it citywide.

 

Councillor Archie Graham, Chair of Glasgow Life and Executive Committee Member for the Commonwealth Games, said: “Programmes like these are exactly what we mean when we talk about creating a legacy from the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games – they demonstrate local people being encouraged to use our world-class facilities and future generations not only being inspired to get active but being taught the core skills to enable them to do so. Balanceability has also allowed for a number of our fantastic staff to access further training – another positive step towards a real and lasting legacy for the people of our city.”

 

Scott Cowan, Glasgow Life Balanceability coach, said: “It’s so motivating to make a real difference and to be able to give local kids the opportunity to learn the skills to ride a bike in a place as inspirational as the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome. You can see the kids progress every week and within a couple of classes they are so excited and don’t want the session to end. Learning to ride a bike here is something that they will never forget and I am very proud to be part of that.”

 

Wendy McLauchlan, London Road Nursery staff member, said: “We have seen our kids flourish and this is no doubt due to the staff’s excellent approach. Some children who were wary in week one now confidently participate.”​

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