This week I stood back and decided not to race myself but to provide support and encouragement to the next generation. It is great to see that passion starting to grow and to teach the kids that the key thing about cycling, at any level, is about making friends, being part of a community, and having fun. I was happy to provide some tips to young Dan Cummins on his cornering technique and was pleased to see him give it a go and he nailed it on his next lap. My own son Alex amazed me again with his solid determination and completed 7 laps of the course which was tough in places; all the kids did a great job and its encouraging to see some talented kids coming through.
For myself, I have considered the natural progression to that of coach/mentor, and I’ve given some thought over the years to what form of coaching I’d like to do, first favouring one on one. As a Dad, I think there is more to do in inspiring the next generation to adopt good habits to be a part of an activity or sport that promotes their social development as well as their physical and mental health. One day they will themselves inspire younger kids to give it a go, and while racing isn’t for everyone, cycling has diverse appeal.
Trust me; I know as someone who has both raced, commuted and just ridden for enjoyment, it’s the involvement and often the lifelong friendships that can grow from embracing such a passion. Just as important to me are the friendships that have only just began. The message is to enjoy the sport. Get that old bike out of the shed/garage; it will be fixable and often not for as much as you might think. Go out and ride with the kids because they will inspire you!
Thanks Dan & Alex for inspiring me this week to want to have a longer term goal of keeping you guys interested and a personal goal of sustaining a better level of fitness myself. In the longer term I’d like to get a Steel Town Cycles race team together – coaching award first though.
Contact me if you think that Cyclocross is something you or your kids might be interested in.