REGION – More children will be using pedal or pushing power this Friday as part of National Ride2School Day.
At least 350,000 students from around Australia will jump on their bike or scooter to get to school in a way beneficial to their bodies and their environments.
Local schools including Goolwa Primary School make up more than 2000 schools across the country who have registered for the day.
Riding bikes and scooters has been a strong focus for Goolwa Primary in recent times, in an effort to get more kids actively exercising more regularly.
Year six student Clayton and year sevens Lachy, Matty and Amelia all ride their bike or scooter to school every day and say they enjoy getting outdoors in the fresh air before and after school.
“It’s good for you to ride every day,” Clayton said.
Amelia said she likes the freedom bike riding brings.
“It’s fun and it keeps you fit,” she said.
Last year the school received Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure grant funding to extend and pave the bike rack.
“There’s been a lot more bikes and scooters since the bike rack upgrade,” Amelia said.
“Since we’ve had crossing monitors there’s been more too, because the parents feel like they’re more safe.”
Clayton said there were plans to properly build a bike track in the pine forest on the edge of the school for the students to use. The junior primary students already ride there with the guidance of the year sevens, who clear the track beforehand.
The fun of riding a bike is on display during National Ride2School Day, and at Goolwa Primary there will be bike-based activities on the day.
National Ride2School Day is run by Bicycle Network, who also implemented the Ride2School program at schools across the nation.
It aims to increase physical activity among Australia’s youth, and Bicycle Network spokesperson Anthea Hargreaves said riding a bike can also improve classroom performance.
“Children need 60 minutes of exercise a day to stay healthy and the easiest way to do this is by simply subbing out time spent sitting in the car or bus with a bike ride to school,” Ms Hargreaves said.