Adapted Bike Program – Special Bikes for Special Kids
Kids with cerebral palsy and other physical disabilities often face numerous obstacles while determining a safe, appropriate activity to keep them physically active. Having a modified bike allows them to ride in the community with their family and friends and allows them the opportunity to be like any other child. The cost of these bikes range from $600-$5000. Often children with a more severe disability, require a more expensive bike. Families with special needs already face extraordinary costs. Purchasing a very expensive bike that the child may grow out of in one or two years is not financially feasible. We customize the bikes for the children and when they grow out of their bikes, we simply recycle and modify the bike for another child. Once the child receives their bike we offer programs throughout the year to give families the opportunity to bike together, while the child learns to ride. Utilizing an adapted bike is often the only typical activity that a child with a severe mobility impairment, is able to do. This year we anticipate almost 200 kids with come through our program. We are in our 17th year of running this program in the Calgary area.
Who Will it Benefit?
This program benefits children between the ages of 3-18 with physical disabilities. Our program has been so successful that we have been able to include children with other disabilities such as down syndrome and autism. The program is designed to provide access to children to have an active lifestyle. The adapted bike program runs on an annual basis and is life-changing for our families. Not only do we get the kids out cycling but the entire family is participating in an activity they were never able to do before (or thought that their child would be able to do). Our partnership with special needs schools, has enabled children to leave their bicycles at schools and utilize their adaptive bikes during physical education classes or when their friend are playing outside in the snow.