From the time the training wheels come off, many of us find riding a bike to be one of life’s simple pleasures. But as we age, hopping on the bike may not be as easy as it once was.
Thankfully, there’s an organization that is keeping the joy of cycling alive at every age. Called Cycling Without Age and founded in Copenhagen in 2012, it involves pairing tricycles with seats, elderly individuals, and cyclists so that all may enjoy being outdoors together. Founder Ole Kassow created the program, inspired by his grandfather’s love of cycling and his frustration at not being able to enjoy this pastime when he was older. Kassow began taking nursing-home residents out on a tricycle so they could watch the scenery go by, feel the wind and sun on their face, and perhaps stop for an ice cream or coffee.
Warm Fuzzies All Around
Kassow’s beautiful brainstorm has become a global movement and for good reason: It benefits all involved with a major case of the warm and fuzzies. Here are some statistics on how successful it is: Cycling Without Age operates in 42 countries with 1,643 chapter locations. It has 2,200 trishaws (tricycles with seats) on the road, powered by 29,270 trained “pilots,” the oldest of whom is a 90-year-old Dane! Over 114,000 people have ridden in the trishaws, with the oldest passengers to date being two 107-year-olds, one in Sweden and one in Singapore.
If you’d like to be involved—whether as a pilot or passenger—check here to see where chapters exist or get information on starting your own. And watch all the videos on the landing page of Cycling Without Age’s website—there are an array of uplifting videos, from Kassow’s TED Talk to “The Grey Escape” about an outing in Scotland.