In THE GREEN BICYCLE , we believe that everyone is able to ride on these two-wheel machines, regardless of age, people are ashamed of not knowing how to ride, however, you can always learn!.As a team we want to share an article about a woman who, regardless of her difficulty in walking, managed to achieve her goal and learn to ride a bicycle after 21 years, leaving her aside.
When I was little, I never learned how to ride a bike. It wasn’t my parents’ fault – they tried. I have little memories of my dad holding the handlebars of my pink and white bike, jogging beside my crooked road until, surprisingly, I walked alone. At age 7, I was on my way to complete independence on two wheels, when, at an extremely low speed, I hit the side of a parked truck. My hands hurt a little, but that was nothing compared to the shame I felt: Not only did I crash into a parked car, there was a family taking out purchases from the other side of the truck. The combination of pain and humiliation was a lot. So I decided to wait a decade and just learn how to drive.
Honestly, I was comfortable with my simple bike fall. There was nothing in my life that was diminished by not knowing how to walk: By living in New York, I could go wherever I wanted by subway, taxi or on foot. Except for the small opportunity to go on a BIKE RIDE WITH LEO . I didn’t think I was missing much. This fall, however, my boyfriend Bryan and I planned a trip to Copenhagen. And after reading that the city was better enjoyed by bicycle, suddenly, he could not take the image of us pedaling among a sea of happy and well-dressed Danes. So I decided, at 28, to face my childhood fear and learn, once and for all, how to ride a bicycle.
After Googleing lessons for adults, I discovered Andree Sanders, the lovely bicycle. I was attracted to his progressive teaching style called the “balance method” – The pedals are initially removed, teaching cyclists to swing on two wheels – which guarantees a “little stress, no crash” experience. Sanders takes his mission very seriously. “I hate when people say, ‘it’s as easy as riding a bicycle,’” he told me before my first lesson. “Riding a bike is not easy!”
One Friday last summer, we got together for our first lesson on the edge of Riverside Park. I love bicycles I was wearing silver bike earrings and a gold bike necklace. In 2006, Sanders left a promotional office job to teach adults and children how to ride a full-time bicycle. The vast majority of its customers are adults, and Sanders prefers it that way. “For children, it is usually the decision of parents to learn,” he says. “But when you’re an adult, it’s youdecision.” I asked her if other adult clients of her cost her personal stories of why it has taken them so long to learn “Oh, yes,” he said, with a knowing look behind her sunglasses. “It is very psychological. The bicycle is only one way inside. ” The details are different, but the basic story is always the same: “I had five, my dad took me to walk.” Said. “And all they remember is the crash.” I empathized with all my comrades who, like me, never had the courage to dust themselves off and ride the bike again.
We reach a flat asphalt sector near the west side of the highway. Here, he told me, it would be where I would learn to ride a bicycle. Bicycle love is like the platonic ideal of a physical education teacher: it supports a lot, meticulous and equipped with an arsenal of motivational phrases. She probably said “two steps forward, one step back” dozens of times during the lesson.
After putting on my helmet, he used a key and took out the pedals, then told me to get on. I began to stagger with the bike without pedals on the asphalt until I reached a somewhat forced slide. “Woohoo!” He exclaimed from across the park, running towards me to give me all five. I never felt so strange and proud at the same time in my life.
As I was advised to love bicycles, there is a lot of psychology that comes up during the lesson. When I added a pedal to the bike, my progress became significantly slow. Children and adults passed me with the kind of security that I will never know. Why am I so mean at this? I thought. I tried to articulate my feelings, how strange it was to not be able to overcome my disability or childhood fear. “You are feeling paralysis from a lot of analysis,” he said. I was wondering how I love bicycles knew that I was Jewish and tried again. But instead of moving forward, the bicycle beam collided with my ankle. Feeling my defeat, he increased the motivational talk: “The bicycle is a tool that is parallel to life. You have to get up and give your heart to the world. Sometimes it’s risky, but you have to work with your fear. ”
Perhaps guessing correctly that I would never reach the point where I feel safe to do so, he grabbed the second pedal. Oh god, I thought. Determined not to go in defeat – and without wanting to disappoint the love bicycles, which had, adorably, taken out his iPhone to document my first real ride – I put myself in position and continued with the greatest nervous power I could achieve. Twenty-one years from the last time I tried, I was once again walking on my own.
The number of bicycles in Copenhagen is comical. Cyclists, pedaling with the grace and synchronicity of a Tour de France squad, fill up the huge bike lanes (which can be up to almost three times larger than those in New York). There are parking lots full of bicycles everywhere. “It’s almost as if they make fun of me,” I told Bryan.
A couple of days passed and my intimidation did not go down. Moreover, as a pedestrian, I began to bother more and more having to maneuver between bicycles, people climbing bicycles on the sidewalks and traffic in the afternoons with bicycles. “Maybe it’s too soon,” I said. “I will only wait and walk through a field or something when I return home.”
One night at dinner, our waiter, an affectionate Canadian, told us a list of things we cannot miss in Copenhagen. “And, guys, don’t forget to rent some bicycles,” he said, closing his list. After a bottle of wine, I confessed that I didn’t know how to actually walk. He laughed a little but then realized that I was serious. “Honestly, the city belongs to cyclists. There is nothing to fear.”
Empowered by our waiter, the next day we planned a route of small streets and decided to pedal to eat. I was ready… almost. After my first lesson with love bicycles, I had taken one more class, where I learned (more or less) to turn and signal, and did some extracurricular pedaling on Governors Island.
My bike in Copenhagen was far from the luxury of the one that belonged to love bicycles. I only had one brake in my hand, and the handlebar grips disintegrated in my hands. After seeing all the inconveniences of the bike, I began to mentally recite the list of how to start pedaling. Bryan looked at me confused. Feeling judged, I repeated: “Riding a bicycle is not easy!” and I started to want the motivational phrases of the love bicycles.
After some fake games, we start with our path. I was staying behind Bryan – who said it was as slow as I could – But I was, in the most basic sense, riding a bike in Copenhagen. I was immediately aware of two things: One, I could only look forward or it would collide (The higher the risks, the more shaky I would be – Going through children and cars was the worst). And two, I only knew how to start walking according to the step-by-step list of the enchanted bicycles, which meant stopping and restarting the locomotive process could take one to five minutes. This would be my biggest enemy.
After we arrived at our destination to eat and calmed my anxiety with a plate of eggs and smoked salmon, we returned to our bicycles in the middle of the afternoon – Bone the Danish end time. Derepente, even the relatively quiet streets began to fill up with people returning to their homes. I survived for about 10 minutes before I realized how out of my capacity that was all. My slow and trembling beginnings took me inches from a car. Bicycles crossed and passed me; even the quiet Danes rang their bells annoying. (It was basically the Ni idea scene where Dionne entered the HIGHWAYbut in a bicycle version.) I stopped in a red light and tried to calm down. But when the light turned green, I was in the middle of restarting my bike to a point where I could start over; I think I caused the first bicycle traffic jam in Danish history.
Bryan, who had seen all this a block later, shined and waited for me. I was embarrassed, humiliated and felt the same as when I was 7: This is simply not for me. In silent defeat, we walked with our bikes the rest of the way.
When I came back to New York, I called the love bicycles and told her the story. I told her that even if I reached my goal – to which she responded with a happy “Yayyy!” – I left with a bicycle ego full of bruises. As always, I had a few wise words: “You went for nothing to ride the world’s bike highway!” said.
Sanders told me that if I tried to walk after Copenhagen. “No,” I replied shyly. The response was gentle: “Time on the bike is literally the only way to make you feel more comfortable,” he added. Before I hung up the phone, I promised him that I would continue walking, regardless of my trembling pedaling and psychological pauses. He left me with one more tip: “When you reach your goal, accept it and reward yourself! When you get to that point, stop and say: Wow, I did it. ”