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05/05/2011 // EVENTS, INFO Leave a comment

Cycling no longer a pastime for children

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ChildrensTriathlon

I was in Derbyshire this past weekend visiting my cousin and was pleasantly surprised to see a house free of consoles and a child’s bike outside that belonged to one of her daughters. My cousin told me that her daughter enjoyed getting out on the bike at every opportunity.

Unfortunately this scenario is not common if we are to believe a survey from Tata Steel and British Triathlon.

A digital generation

Its poll of 1,500 British 6-15 year olds that took place in March revealed that just 46% had ridden their bikes in the week before the survey took place. In contrast, nearly three quarters (73%) had found the time to play a video game in those last seven days. One in 10 said they couldn’t ride a bike at all.

Further highlighting the shift from traditional physical pastimes to a more ‘digitally fit’ generation, only 34% of the youngsters had swam a length of a pool with 15% of the kids confessing to not being able to swim at all.

Playing sport

When it comes to playing sport, more than twice as many youngsters spend their free time watching TV (79%) as they do playing sport (34%).  Other less active pastimes preferred to sport include surfing the internet (56%), chatting on social networks (45%) and playing video games (43%). A further 15% of the children polled said they had never played sport with their parents.

Kids of Steel campaign

Tata Steel is the main corporate sponsor of British Triathlon and it has been helping the governing body to get more children active in the sport. Tata Steel has so far given the chance to nearly 25,000 children to participate in free and fully equipped mini-triathlons geared simply towards having fun and taking part, regardless of ability via its Tata Kids of Steel campaign.

This summer Tata’s Kids of Steel will visit 18 locations nationwide (see dates below) and give kids the chance to sample the triathlon disciplines of swimming, cycling and running. On top of this every child will receive a medal for taking part in addition to a swim cap, t-shirt and gym sack.

4th May     Newham

5th May     Ealing

6th May     Cambridge

17th May    Edinburgh

18th May    Fife

19th May    Teesside

24th May    Birmingham

25th May    Leeds

26th May    Rotherham

22nd June   Mold

23rd June   Manchester

24th June   Scunthorpe

28th June   Maidstone

29th June   Willesden

30th June   Corby

5th July      Swansea

6th July      Bristol

7th July      Lewes


See also

Triathlon checklist

Holiday firm offers in-house cycling training for children


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