After getting back into cycling in 2000, Kate Wylie was quickly hooked. After becoming a Breeze Ride leader she went onto become a Bikeability instructor and founded the Colne Valley Cycle Therapy group.
Kate Wylie said…
"I don't come from a cycling family, so I didn't have anyone to show me the cycling ropes. I was unfit, I suffered from arthritis in my knees (still do!), I had no idea about gears and was terrified of riding on-road. I was soon hooked, so I attended a cycling course by Kirklees Council, and that really boosted my skills and confidence.
"From there, I wanted help others get in to cycling, so I trained to become a Breeze Ride leader and I think I have led nearly 100 rides so far.
"Having struggled with riding techniques myself, I was in a good position to understand and help others improve their skills, so I trained as a national standards instructor and began running adult learn to ride sessions locally through City Connect. I jumped at an opportunity to become a Bikeability instructor, and after seven years, this passion has developed in to running my own Bikeability scheme, delivering bikeability to 75% of the primary schools in Kirklees.
We want to be as inclusive as possible, so we lend people bikes if they don’t have their own
"Last year, I set up Colne Valley Cycle Therapy with Jane Crookes to offer guided rides and skills sessions for adults. We want to be as inclusive as possible, so we lend people bikes if they don’t have their own. Our rides are really 'pootles’ and we don’t go anywhere without a café stop for a chat. In the future we hope to get funding for some e-bikes and e-trikes, so that people with minor mobility/balance issues will be able to join us, get active and improve their mental health.
"Arthritis means I can’t walk far, but I can cycle for miles. I have met some great people who have become great friends and that feeling I get when someone I am teaching rides for the first time; priceless!"
Kate was nominated for the 100 Women in Cycling by Lynnette Evans, who said:
"Kate has had an inspiring cycling journey. From a novice rider taking part in Kirklees Council's SkyRide programme in West Yorkshire in 2013, she trained as a Breeze Champion with British Cycling and led women-only rides as a volunteer. She then set up a community cycling group called Cafe Stop Riders targeted at women wanting a social ride on scenic traffic-free routes with a compulsory cafe stop for a brew!
"Kate became a National Standard Instructor through Bikeability and taught adults to ride before being employed to deliver Bikeability training in schools. She has now made this her full-time work and heads up the cycle training organisation 'Legacy Ride' delivering Bikeability across the areas of Huddersfield and Dewsbury.
Kate is easy going, friendly and encouraging. You couldn't find a more supportive and patient ride leader and trainer
"Kate manages tricky logistics to train and inspire primary school children to ride. Alongside this she has developed the Café Stop Riders group into a social enterprise 'Colne Valley Cycle Therapy' of which the ethos is 'You get far more out of cycling than you'd imagine. You get fit, it boosts your mood, and you get to chat to a friendly bunch and perhaps have a little coffee and cake along the way'.
"Kate is easy going, friendly and encouraging. You couldn't find a more supportive and patient ride leader and trainer."