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This semester, two university teachers, Dr. Rozena McCabe of Huston-Tillotson University and Tere Ramirez of UT-Austin, asked BikeTexas staff to conduct a bicycle safety presentation and ride for their future-Physical Education-teacher students. Rozena and Tere are both certified by BikeTexas in the SuperCyclist Curriculum and have been dedicated to passing on the SuperCyclist safety program to their Kinesiology and Health Education students.
The rides both took off from the BikeTexas office, but first the students learned how to check their bike for safety before every ride – each one practiced the ABCD Quick Check on their bike. The students also learned the importance and how-tos of communicating with drivers and fellow cyclists: i.e., putting your foot down and waiting your turn at a stop sign lets drivers know your intention, and that your bike is a vehicle too. BikeTexas staff discussed the importance of riding straight and predictably and following the same laws as cars.
After fitting helmets and bikes, the groups took off for the ride. In a parking lot, they practiced the important points to teach children. They learned the importance of and techniques for a controlled take off and stop: For a controlled take off they practiced starting off the seat in the power pedal position. For a controlled stop they practiced getting off the seat as they were stopping. Several of the students learned this skill for the first time. They also practiced how to scan without swerving.
After the skills were practiced it was time to get the blood pumping. The students enjoyed a lovely ride along Lady Bird Lake Trail and ended at the BikeTexas office. BikeTexas staff and their teachers hope that these students will go on to teach bicycle safety when they become Physical Education teachers. Some of the past students have done so and we have reported on them in previous newsletters.
The Texas SuperCyclist Program is a nationally recognized bicycle safety program designed for elementary school physical education teachers and students studying to be physical education teachers. The training provides teachers with the bicycle safety skills and curriculum needed to teach these life saving skills to 4th and 5th grade students.