Growing up in London in the 1970s Joy’s parents were concerned about increasing traffic levels and didn’t want her on a bike. Despite always wanting to learn, Joy’s focus was on education in her early years and it wasn’t until she turned 50 that she learnt how to ride.
Since then Joy has found cycling to be a real life-changer and considers getting out into the fresh air on two wheels a great way to beat stress.
“I’m just literally concentrating on cycling and the surroundings,” explained Joy. “I notice things that I wouldn’t notice in my normal day to day.
“I think it’s probably the closest to being present that I ever am.”
I think it’s probably the closest to being present that I ever am
Cycling has also benefitted Joy’s physical health. She is diabetic and has high blood pressure but cycling regularly has helped her lose weight.
Joy is now a key figure in her local cycling community, helping to set up a new cycling group in Birmingham, the Joyful Bellas and Fellas, training to become a ride leader and inspiring others to take up cycling.
“If you’re not into cycling already, it can be a bit intimidating to come out,” said Joy. “But when you’re coming to join a group and that group is welcoming and supportive then it’s more encouraging.
“It makes people feel like; ‘yes I can do this.’”
Find out more
Learning to ride a bike
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