Our kids are being chauffeured to school more than ever before – running late, bad weather and dangerous roads are the usual excuses parents dream up to drive instead of ride or walk to school. If you can't manage to ride every day (sometimes that's just not practical) at least try to commit to riding once a week. It's fun, a great bonding experience and you'll be helping them create healthy habits for life.
A recent report found that physical activity in the morning has an impact on a child’s concentration and their ability to understand the curriculum for up to four hours afterwards.
If you're worried about safe cycle routes on the way to school, you should know that it is legal for children under the age of 12 to ride on footpaths – and parents accompanying them can too. Laws vary from state to state – in VIC, NSW and WA children under 12 years of age can ride on a footpath and in QLD, TAS, SA and ACT cyclists of all ages are allowed to ride on footpaths.
- RACV reports that 74 percent of parents admitted they travelled more independently when they were their child’s age, maybe the fast pace of today’s family life is the biggest hurdle.
- The Australian Heart Foundation claims that two-thirds of five to six-year-olds and more than half of nine to 10-year-olds are driven to school every day.
- Statistics published by the Australian Health Policy collaboration, suggest that 70 percent of Australian children aged five to 11 don’t meet the recommended guidelines of at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day.