Have you or your children ever thought about riding a bike to school? Now is the perfect time to give it a go as we make our way out of coronavirus restrictions and learning from home.
These strange times have made us try new things and form new habits, which for many people has meant catching the cycling craze.
Families all around Australia have taken to bikes during the lockdown, using them as a way to get some fresh air outside and exercise while maintaining physical distancing.
And that's why riding to school next week is a great idea. It makes the return to class fun and exciting for children, and for parents still working from home, it's an easy way to get out and exercise.
Bicycle Network General Manager of Behaviour Change Leyla Asadi said that having a go at riding to school will be fun, fit and stress-free.
"You won't have to worry about the car park crush or the stress of driving to school and you can easily keep 1.5 metres from other people," said Ms Asadi.
"Children will get a great burst of exercise and arrive at school happy, energised and ready to learn."
You could also try and time your ride to school with other families and children – bike riding can double up as playtime for kids who have missed seeing their friends.
"Bike riding is a great way for children to play, chat and laugh together without coming into physical contact with each other," added Ms Asadi.
Ride2School is here to help
To help families prepare for their trip to school, Bicycle Network's RIde2School program has released a handy guide with a checklist of things to help you give riding to school a go.
It includes how to make sure your bike is ready to ride, what you might want to bring and how to choose a route to ride.
A good tip to remember is that in Victoria, if you’re under 13 or riding with a child, you can use the footpath. In New South Wales that age is 16, and in other states, anyone can ride on the footpath regardless of their age.
Families that live further away from schools can make riding part of their daily trip by driving closer to school and riding some of the distance.
"Part way is ok – by parking the car a block or two away from school you can avoid the busy school car park and still have a nice, achievable bike ride," added Ms Asadi.
Bicycle Network's Ride2School program works to help children get their 60 minutes of daily exercise by riding, walking, scooting and skating to school.
Almost one in two students at schools that participate in the Ride2School program ride or walk to school – above the national average of one in five.
For more information about Bicycle Network's Ride2School program and to get involved visit ride2school.com.au.Download guide Download checklist
This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.