Bike & Go has hosted its first ever Cycle to the Sands event, to mark Mental Health Awareness Week and highlight the mental health benefits that cycling can bring.
A group of Bike & Go cyclists enjoyed a guided bike ride from West Kirby Station to Thurstaston for refreshments, before stopping at West Kirby beach to enjoy a mindfulness session by Yogasmiths Paul and Stephen Smith and a free picnic.
The event was laid on by Bike & Go to provide a taster of the feelings of positivity and well-being that cycling can bring. And with this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week, which runs until this Sunday, focusing on stress and how to cope with it, there’s never been a better time to jump on a bike.
Cycling has long been recognised as a great way of boosting mental health, with a Cycling UK survey published last year revealing that 91% of its 11,482 respondents rating off-road cycling as fairly or very important for their mental health.
Research published in the journal Preventive Medicine also found that people who walked or cycled to work benefited from improved mental wellbeing in comparison with those who travelled by car.
David O’Leary, Director of Bike & Go said: “We’re delighted that the sun came out for this special event, and that members of the community were able to experience some of the mental and physical health benefits that cycling can generate.”
Bike & Go offers bike hire facilities from 21 participating train stations across the Merseyrail network, including Liverpool Central, Moorfields, Aigburth, Southport, Ormskirk and West Kirby, in addition to a further 49 participating train stations across much of the North West, North East and Yorkshire, East and South East of England, and Scotland.
In 2016 the scheme was praised by a UK division of the travel giant TripAdvisor when it was included in a list of the top seven bicycle hire companies drawn up by its subsidiary rental company Holiday Lettings.
To hire a Bike & Go bike, users simply need to register their card details online, which they can do via smart phones, tablets, or at home, and pay the annual £10 subscription fee. They will then receive a user number via email which will allow immediate bike hire – usually charged at just £3.80 per 24 hours up to a maximum of 72 hours – while they wait for their Bike & Go membership card.