• 30 April 2020

Get fit for free – Breeze rides

Have you made a promise to yourself be more active? Lots of us join a gym and plan to get fit, but after a few months we lose interest. There is another way! You don’t need to spend a fortune on gym memberships – you can get fit and have fun by doing loads of free outdoor activities across the county.

Explore Kent and Kent Sport have put together a series of blogs on the best ways to get fit for free.  So if you’re up for getting more active, read on, and why not take a look at the whole series of blogs. In this blog, we’re looking at we’re looking at Breeze, the British Cycling programme offering free guided rides for women.

Breeze rides are free-of-charge guided cycling routes just for women. The rides take place in a variety of settings and cater for all abilities, from beginners to advanced riders. On some of the rides the leaders even cater for women to bring their children. Rides range in distance from around three miles up to 25 miles or more.

Many Breeze rides are attended by women who have not cycled for a long time or who have recovered from an injury. It is often women in these groups who give up cycling, which is why Breeze rides were set up and why they’re just for women.

Breeze ride leaders are trained by British Cycling, so as well as being friendly and approachable, they’ll help you to regain that essential cycling confidence. There are two ride leaders on each Breeze ride, who will ride at your pace so you won’t feel under pressure to ride faster than you feel comfortable with. They want you to get the most out of your cycling, and to feel comfortable coming along to more rides afterwards to help keep you going.

You’ll need a bike and ideally a helmet to get started. If you don’t own a bike, why not borrow a friend’s bike initially to see if it’s for you before investing in your own? It won’t be long though before you’ve got a taste for cycling! Breeze rides are divided into three levels – Easy Going, Steady and Challenging – so it’s easy to find a ride best suited to your ability. The rides can be booked easily online at HSBC British Cycling ride finder.

Rides take place in a variety of settings all over Kent and Medway. Some are entirely off-road, taking routes such as local parks, cycle trails and multi-user pathways. On-road routes generally use quiet country lanes or side roads. Rides start at a designated time and location before a warm up and check over of your bike takes place. Ride leaders are able to help with small maintenance issues and answer bike-related questions too. This is the place to ask those burning questions and you’ll often find that other women on the ride have asked similar things before!

Rides often stop off at points of interest along the way such as cafes, farmers markets or even viewpoints which allows you time to grab a coffee or spend time getting to know other riders in your group. A Breeze ride is a great way to get you feeling good and might even make you fall in love with cycling again.

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