You see them in packs on country roads, neighbourhood streets and trails about town.
Or, at least you did before COVID-19 distancing recommendations came into play.
Like other enthusiasts, bike riders come in all genres, abilities and like to gather for group rides as ways to connect, socialize, train and learn from each other. But right now, that’s not recommended.
Two faculty members have created an online option using the popular fitness app Strava. TRU Cycling Club is free to join and open to anyone with some connection to TRU.
“We’re both avid cyclists and we’re suffering because clubs aren’t doing group social rides anymore, or if they are, it’s still a bad idea until COVID eases,” says John Belshaw, who teaches history through Open Learning. He founded the club with Amy Tucker, who teaches business through Open Learning and campus.
And just as TRU has an open mandate, so too has the club.
“TRU is BC’s open university and, in the spirit of openness, we aim to create a welcoming environment for anyone associated with the university, and that also includes alumni,” says Belshaw. “Whether you’re in Kamloops or Williams Lake, at one of the centres around the Cariboo Plateau, at international hubs, or wherever TRU-Open Learning reaches—you are welcome.”
Meanwhile, Tucker is known as an avid cyclist amongst coworkers, students and her social media followers. The club is one way of staying committed to her triathlon training while continuing to promote the health benefits of bicycle riding.
“I joined because I want to be part of something bigger than myself while staying connected with my coworkers and students,” says Tucker. “Despite the immense challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the club is a great opportunity to incorporate more physical activity into our daily routines. I feel like it’s essential to have a place where people can post and track their results and see how others are doing. It has been a great experience so far, and I’m looking forward to continuing the journey.”