A person having a Cycle Confidence session with an instructor, both cycling on a cycle path on the road

Travelling Actively is Great for our Health, Wellbeing and the Environment

Movement can change lives for the better and there are so many benefits to travelling actively, for you, your family, friends, local community and the environment we all depend on. Not only does it positively impact our health, wellbeing and the environment; it can also be more convenient, easier and cheaper.

Here are some ideas on how you can travel actively, along with useful links and top tips.

Environmental and Health Benefits When You Leave the Car at Home

Swapping your regular short drive to the shop or to see a friend, for walking, wheeling or cycling, is great for the environment. It creates less noise, less air pollution, and results in fewer carbon emissions, protecting and improving our natural environment and resources. It is also fabulous for our health as recommendations suggest we should try to be active for at least 150 minutes per week – setting us up for good health now and in our later lives.

Travelling to School

If you live close enough to do so travelling actively to school can be a really important part of a child’s development – teachers report that children who cycle, walk or scoot arrive at school more relaxed, alert and ready to start the day than those who travel by car. It is also a great way to learn about road safety together.

Commuting to Work

If you live within a few miles of your workplace and are able, there are many benefits from walking, wheeling or cycling to work. As well as saving money on transport and reducing your carbon footprint, your health and wellbeing will also reap the benefits too. It can be an easy and convenient way to fit more movement into your daily life. Just think of all that ‘personal thinking time’ you will have as well as the chance to move more outdoors and take in the fresh air on the way to work.

If you commute to work and would like to swap your travel journey for cycling, your employer could help you reduce the cost of a new bike and accessories by 26-40% and spread the cost through Cyclescheme.

If you would prefer to run or walk, then there are lots of great hints and tips here to help get you from A to B, from planning your route, to dressing for the occasion!

Free Adult Cycle Confidence Sessions

If you are an adult in need of a confidence boost or want to try cycling again after a break, we are offering free adult cycling confidence sessions throughout Devon.

Whether you’re a first-time rider or a regular cyclist looking to improve your skills, our free cycle sessions can be tailored to suit your abilities and goals. If you have a friend, colleague or family member that’s interested, bring them along too. The sessions, delivered by qualified cycle Instructors, can cater between 1-3 people.

To book your FREE adult cycle confidence session please go to our Get Cycling page where you can access our quick and simple booking form. You will also find links to useful information including how to start cycling and bike maintenance.

Here is one Exeter Resident’s experience of the cycle confidence session:

“In August 2021, my car broke down three times in a week and it ended up in a scrapyard. I decided to get a bicycle to commute to the shops, leisure centre, etc with the long-term goal of commuting to and from work (over an hour away each way via a bicycle).

“As I rode a bike as a child (mainly in a local car park where I lived), I did not view getting on a bike again as an adult as an issue. I decided to practice on a very short nearby shaded cycle path but found it really difficult as I did not feel confident in riding it. The bike stayed in my hallway, and I did not ride for a year and used the train instead.

“As I really wanted to cycle, I did some research and found out that some areas provide adult confidence cycle sessions. I then came across Active Devon and it was really easy to book my first session and they were really accommodating as I wanted a female instructor (which was limited) so they arranged a male cycling instructor and a female member of Active Devon staff to deliver the session.

“The first session helped me gain confidence in cycling on cycle paths which I had never done before and in the second session, I learnt to cycle on the road which I was really anxious about as I have never had any cycling proficiency training before.

“The instructors are really knowledgeable, friendly and helpful and I was able to talk to them about areas that I found difficult or unsure of such as changing gear and they would tailor the session to include this.

“I initially was unsure of accessing cycle sessions as an adult as I thought that I was too old and would be judged. I was not at all judged and actually felt encouraged and supported. I now cycle twice a week at the very least, have increased confidence and I really enjoy it!” By Exeter Resident