The Let’s Ride Team received a letter from Melissa Lubke on how Let’s Ride helped her son Jezeriah come out of his comfort zone and conquer his fear of riding a bike safely. Jezeriah is a student from Launceston Christian School, in Tasmania. With the help of Sporting Schools Funding and Cycling Australia’s accredited coach, Ian Loft, Jezeriah now rides with confidence and has improved his overall personality which is highlighted in the letter below.
I want to thank Cycling Australia very much for providing my son Jezeriah Lubke (8) an opportunity to participate in the ‘Let’s Ride’ program funded by Sporting Schools. I would also like to thank Launceston Christian School (LCS) that they gave him many chances to gain vital skills he needed at a time he and I needed the most.
Jezeriah has always had co-ordination and social challenges and it wasn’t until after my husband tragically died (when Jez he was 6) that I had him assessed and he was diagnosed with ADHD and ASD.
At the time I was also pregnant with our 3rd child. This has made designating a quality time and effort to teach him life skills such as bike riding and road safety a challenge. I was so very grateful that LCS offered ‘Let’s Ride’ not just once but kept offering it each term to him as although he was persistent he still had not managed to ride by himself.
When he started his anxiety was so great that he would not even put on a hairnet in order to use the provided helmet. With skill and understanding, Mr. Ian Loft and the aides created an environment of trust and confidence. It may have taken 6 terms of persistence and patience but it happened. From scooting to pedalling practice and safety rules he finally came running home ecstatic with confidence shouting “Mum, I did it, I rode by myself today!”
He had beaten his teacher to it and she came knocking on the door with as much excitement! How comforting and confidence building this is for a mother – especially when one feels overwhelmed with their workload and emotional needs.
I have since heard that his newfound confidence encouraged other struggling kids and they took encouragement from his success and now are also able to ride.
Jez’s confidence from achieving such a difficult task for him has had a ‘domino’ effect into other areas of his life such as swimming safety. In the exact week after he was able to ride unaided he achieved a long-awaited goal of jumping into the deep end of the pool to his teacher and continuing with backstroke unaided. A skill that could save his life. The swimming teacher and I were astounded at the rapid/almost instant progress. (She has since left and said he was a highlight in her career)
I have heard that the Sporting schools program is funded based on how many students are put through the program. This is great that many, many kids have a chance to benefit, but I feel if Jez had not been given many opportunities in small groups he would not have learned to ride a bike an important life skill, this is highly valued and the benefits for him are far-reaching.
It has benefited Jez with his physical and core strength, coordination, safety skills, decision making and self-confidence and overflowing into more academic areas.
I am happy to speak with anyone further if they would like to use this as a ‘good news’ story for the program