Proud Mom

Parents

Years of science, months of planning and hours of volunteering lead to confidence to last a lifetime – achieved in just 5 days. At our iCan Bike programs, individuals learn to balance, pedal, steer and take off on their own, many in five days or less – a feat parents say is miraculous.

How Our Bike Program Works

Years of research, months of planning by your local bike camp hosts and hours of volunteer ‘spotting’ by wonderful, concerned people from your community lead to your child attaining confidence to last a lifetime – achieved in just 5 days.  At our iCan Bike programs, riders learn to balance, pedal, steer and take off on their own, many in five days or less – a feat parents say is miraculous.

Our minimum age for participating in an iCan Bike program is 8 years old, however, there is no upper age limit. Although most riders are between the ages of 8 and 18, approximately 10% to 15% of our riders are over the age of 18.  Each rider will be assigned to a 75 minute riding session which they will attend each of the 5 days (M – F). During this time, they will ride a bicycle that gradually introduces the natural instability of a conventional two-wheel bike at their own individualized pace of progression.

Two volunteers are assigned to each rider to serve as their ‘spotters’ providing physical support, motivation and encouragement throughout the week.  While all individuals learn at their own pace, some will be ready to ride on two wheels as soon as the third day of camp, and historically approximately 80% of the individuals who participate in iCan Bike ride a two-wheel bicycle independently by the end of our five day program.  The other 20% of these individuals make tremendous progress towards this goal.

We strive to teach individuals to ride such that they can be independent lifetime riders.  In other words, such that they have sufficient riding skills that they can start, ride and stop their bike without any assistance in a safe and controlled manner.  New riders need practice and time to generalize the skills learned during the iCan Bike week.  A family member or other designee is trained to continue working with the rider following the program. Having a bike suitable for learning and regular practice are the two most important factors in nurturing a new rider.

We adapt our approach to each individual rider based on the accommodations they may need to benefit the most from our program.  Our staff are well-trained and experienced in working with many different types of disabilities and behaviors.  We stock all our fleets of bike equipment with ‘tricks of the trade’ motivational tools that we find are often successful to motivate riders to participate and succeed.

Generally speaking, we try to establish early on at our iCan Bike programs that learning to ride is fun but serious business.  We use a ‘kind yet firm’ approach so that riders cooperate with the program protocol.  We take a team approach whereby we collaborate with parents for their advice and tips on how to most successfully work through any behavioral difficulties with their rider.

Benefits of riding a bicycle

  1. Increase in self-esteem and confidence spills over into many other aspects of their lives
  2. Positive changes in family dynamics
  3. Inclusion opportunities
  4. Independent transportation
  5. Recreation improves physical fitness, mental health and overall quality of life

Our program works! Success rate of riders independently riding a bicycle by the end of our iCan Bike programs is approximately 80% and all riders progress and gain skills during the week.

To determine if someone is a good candidate for the iCan Bike program please review the requirements for participation and indicators for success below.  Click on the below orange image of the U.S. to find a program near you:

Find A Program

First iCan Bike Camp

Requirements for participation

To ensure the safety of our riders and the best use of our limited resources we have established certain criteria that all riders must meet to be eligible to attend an iCan Bike program.  The rider must:

  1. be at least 8 years old
  2. have a disability
  3. walk without an assistive device (e.g., walker or cane)
  4. be able to side step swiftly to both sides
  5. be able to wear a properly fitted bike helmet at all times when on a bicycle
  6. have a minimum inseam measurement of at least 20” when measured from the floor wearing sneakers
  7. not exceed 220 lbs.

As you evaluate this program it is important to consider behavior.  A person may be physically able to ride a bike, but if their behavior is such that they cannot be persuaded to get on the bike and follow instructions, then it is likely this program will not be beneficial.  Although we strive to make the experience fun and productive for all riders, individuals with severe behavioral issues may be removed from the program if their actions are detrimental to the overall function of the program or potentially harmful to themselves or others.

Indicators of Success

Certain skills increase the likelihood of any given rider’s success in learning to ride a two-wheel bicycle at an iCan Bike program including when the rider:

  1. is able to keep feet on pedals
  2. is able to keep hands on handlebar
  3. has adequate strength to maintain riding speed
  4. has adequate stamina to ride 75 minutes per day for 5 consecutive days with short breaks
  5. is able to follow basic instructions in a group setting
  6. is motivated, or able to be motivated, to learn to ride a bike
  7. has a personal bike suitable for learning
  8. has an opportunity to practice skills immediately following camp

Riders Need a Bike

All riders must have an appropriate personal bike available for the iCan Bike program by no later than Thursday (Day #4) of the program.  Our goal is to transition all riders to their personal bike towards latter part of the iCan Bike program such that they are comfortable with the bike they will be riding at home.  Parents may or may not have an appropriate bike available.  The video and documents below are designed to help guide parents through the process of identifying and purchasing a suitable bike for their rider.

Helpful Videos

Bike Fit and Selection
lttwadmin 4 years ago

Lose The Training Wheels recommendations on proper bike fit and features for learning. To view the a… Go to video page

Click To Play
Final LTTW
okcgravity 1 year ago
Click To Play
NHTSA's Bike Safe, Bike Smart
Tim's Travel I Can Shine Bike Camp AM 8-9-13
wmtv15 8 months ago

Tim's Travel I Can Shine Bike Camp AM 8-9-13 Go to video page

Click To Play
Arlington camp iCan Bike helps kids lose training…
abc7dc 9 months ago

Arlington camp iCan Bike helps special needs kids lose their training wheels. http://wj.la/11qC0HP Go to video page

Click To Play

Helpful Documents

Dr. Kein's Home Remedy for Struggling Riders
(June 21, 2013)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: This document is for parents working with riders that did not attend an iCan Bike camp or did attend camp but are still struggling to learn to ride a bike
Categories: Parent Page
Post iCan Bike Spotting Tips
(June 21, 2013)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Overview for families to follow when spotting your rider after bike camp
Categories: Parent Page, Parents
How Parents & Guardians Can Help
(November 2, 2012)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Summary of steps parents and guardians can take to make the iCan Bike program a positive and successful experience for their rider.
Categories: Parent Page, Parents
Post iCan Bike Riding Tips
(November 2, 2012)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Overview for families to follow when implementing post bike program riding strategies
Categories: Parent Page, Parents
Purchasing the Right Bike & Helmet
(November 2, 2012)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Overview for families on what important items to consider when purchasing a bike and helmet for their rider.
Categories: Parent Page, Parents
Parent Feedback Form
(November 2, 2012)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Survey Hosts provide to parents of riders on the last day of the bike program to collect valuable feedback and suggestions for improvement for Hosts and iCan Shine
Categories: Parent Page, Parents
Day-By-Day Overview of Bike Camp
(November 2, 2012)
Download: download Open | Download
Summary: Summary of what occurs and what to expect each day during the bike program week
Categories: Parent Page, Planning