Hailey Roy is 10 years old fourth grader at Crisafulli Elementary School in Westford, MA. She has two older sisters, Ally age 19 and Sarina age 13. Since Hailey was a baby she has loved dancing. She is a student of ballet, tap and jazz dance. She also plays tennis and the flute. She LOVES math and takes extra math classes outside of school.
Hailey is quite accomplished yet for the past 4-5 years there has been something she’s wanted to learn. Try as she might she was never able to learn to ride a two-wheel bicycle. Hailey’s mom Karen says that Hailey started on training wheels and progressed to removing the training wheels. Hailey tried but couldn’t put all the skills together. After repeated falls Hailey began to give up on learning to ride and returned to the other activities she loves.
Hailey has been in physical therapy since she was a baby. Her mom describes her as a hard-worker. “Hailey has a plan where she does exercises 5 days a week at home on her own. She is dedicated to being strong and fit.” A couple of years ago Hailey’s Physical Therapist mentioned the iCan Bike program and how it had been successful for other children. Due to scheduling conflicts two years went by before Hailey was able to sign up to attend iCan Bike – Groton, MA.
When asked if she expected to learn to ride independently during bike camp Hailey says “NO WAY!” Hailey’s mom Karen felt differently. “I had a good feeling that she would learn to ride that week. Hailey is strong and such a hard worker. Learning to ride a bike is something she has always wanted to do and we heard good things about the program.”
Three weeks before iCan Bike – Groton, MA Hailey decided she did not want to attend. She began to worry about falling, remembering how that felt. Karen took Hailey shopping for a new bike and that was the turning point. “Once Hailey saw her new bike she started getting really excited for bike camp.”
Both Karen and Hailey were surprised and excited that Monday was such a big success. Hailey says “I did not expect to walk in and get on a bike that I could ride by myself right away. I was excited!” Tandem Tuesday was a big hit for Hailey. She loved riding a two-wheeler as an equal partner with her Bike Tech Garrett. She says “It was great pedaling and steering together with him.”
Hailey tells us that “When Andrea from iCan Shine first got me on my real bike I kept thinking she was still holding the back. But then I looked over and saw both of her arms pumping as she ran with me and I realized it was just me. I was doing it by myself! I couldn’t believe it! I felt SO proud!”
Karen tells us that her favorite part of the week was watching not only her daughter but also watching the other kids in Hailey’s session. “It was the most joyful thing to see EVERY kid make progress and feel proud. I loved sitting with the other parents, hearing their stories. It was unbelievable!”
We asked Hailey if she had any advice for other kids thinking about signing up for an iCan Bike camp. “I learned that falling is just part of learning to ride a bike. Don’t be afraid to fall. It’s really ok. It made me a better rider.” Hailey’s au pair says that since Hailey fell and got over the fear she was able to take more risks and really improve her skills. That’s great advice Hailey!
Since bike camp Hailey has progressed to riding in the neighborhood and also fulfilling one of her dreams. There is a rail-to-trail near their house. Until now Hailey has only been able to walk that trail with her mother. This year “Something magical happened. My dream came true and I rode on the trail with my mother. We rode our bikes on the trail. I have dreamed that for a long time. I have seen it in my mind and now it happened. It was magical!”
We are so grateful to have been part of Hailey’s journey. We believe she will continue to achieve whatever she decides to go for in her life. Thanks Hailey for sharing your bright light with us all.
~ SHINE ON ~
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