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Can I learn to cycle? Opportunities for all children to achieve cycling- voices from research and practice

Todd, Gabriela, Pickering, Dawn ORCID: and Hurrell, Sue 2014. Can I learn to cycle? Opportunities for all children to achieve cycling- voices from research and practice. Presented at: Child’s World - Next Steps, Aberystwyth, Wales, 25-27 June 2014.

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Disabled children have limited participation opportunities. To fulfil Articles 23, 28, 29, 31, United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, a holistic approach to education is required. Method and Approaches: Mixed methods research was carried out between 2009-2012, exploring the effects of adapted cycling for children and young people with Cerebral Palsy. Measurements of lower limb muscle strength and length were taken and children kept a diary about their cycling experiences. They took part in interviews accompanied by their parent or learning support assistant. Content analysis was carried out utilising NVIVO to manage the data sets and the themes which emerged included the importance of an inclusive school environment to practice cycling. This has been developed by initiating school clubs to enhance this cycling experience. Results: Thirty Five children took part in the research resulting in 43 interviews and 22 diaries. The analysis is represented by a ‘wheel of participation’ illustrating the role of the school being key to this learning experience. Children spoke about important events in their cycling experience. Following the research, outreach into special schools became a priority and specific funding was sought to facilitate this. 8 school cycle training courses lasting 1 hr each for 6 weeks were initiated in order to introduce and make cycling accessible, particularly including children who were wheelchair-dependent. This was led by a children’s physiotherapist. Conclusions Children’s Rights and Rights of disabled people need consideration when offering cycling in yr 5-6. Children with movement difficulties will be known to PE teachers. Expert support can be brought in to help junior children, who are not yet cycling. This enables more children to access cycle training in schools, but also develops children completely new to cycling. Schools have historically been aiming for children cycling to school, but cycling has the potential to provide a life skill for every child- with sport, leisure, commuting becoming new choices, should the child wish to develop them at a later stage.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Healthcare Sciences
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education
Funders: Nancie Finnie Charitable Trust
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2022 08:13

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