CHILDREN are being encouraged to get on their bikes and live healthy lifestyles.

Pupils from both Marshwood and Thorncombe primary schools came together to undertake their Level 1 and Level 2 Bikeability training together.

The two-day course comprises the school-based Level 1 training, which teaches the children the basics of bike maintenance, handling and safety. Level 2 involves using and applying these skills out on the road itself, navigating junctions and other highway obstacles.

Bikeability is government-recognised, practical and professional training which aims to improve cyclists' skills and boost their confidence.

Keen cyclist and Marshwood headteacher Luke Owen believes the training is vitally important.

He said: "We should be doing all we can to encourage children to pursue active lifestyles. By funding the training using the primary school PE grant, both schools hope that the children will feel more confident on their bikes and therefore cycle more regularly."

Many children will have the opportunity to participate in Bikeability through their school, usually when they reach Year 6.

If your child’s school hasn’t yet signed up for Bikeability, or you think your child would benefit from some extra or more focused tuition, you can encourage your child’s school to contact their local authority and sign-up for Bikeability sessions or search for a Bikeability provider that delivers training in your local area using the find a course provider tool.

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