Innovations in health and social care -Sheffield Cycling 4 All
Sheffield Cycling 4 All offers all-ability cycling sessions to people with disabilities in Hillsborough Park. Steve Marsden, CTC Cycle Champion for South Yorkshire, set up the project which is now supported by Disability Sheffield with funding via The Health Lottery.
What is the problem this innovation solves
Limited health, exercise and transportation choices available for people with disabilities or physical difficulties. Social isolation resulting from the above problems.
Cycling sessions using adapted trikes, conducted in a friendly and encouraging environment, with an emphasis on fostering feelings of belonging and social inclusion amongst participants.
The project has been running for almost a decade and has produced lots of examples of people that have benefited from exploring cycling as not just a means of getting exercise but a vehicle for fostering a sense of belonging and self-worth.
We expect the individual impacts to be increased health and wellbeing through exercise, increased social contact through engaging in a regular group activity conducted in a friendly warm environment.
The project is almost a decade old, and so is a mature offering. Across the country there are a number of similar schemes aimed at encouraging those with disabilities or physical difficulties to try cycling as a means to improve health and wellbeing.
What would councils/health organisations/local areas need to do or have in place to enable it to happen?
A suitable venue for cycling activities, such as a park with wide pathways and storage facilities for trikes. Funding to purchase trikes and provide training and support to service providers. Enable people to use their personal budgets/personal health budgets to access the programme/purchase trikes.
What would kill it
Lack of secure venue. Lack of initial investment in a fleet of suitable trikes. Lack of continuation funding to enable ongoing maintenance of bikes. Unwillingness to enable people to use their personal budgets/personal health budgets to access the scheme. Lack of people resources to run such a scheme.