Dame Kelly Holmes visited Sheffield yesterday to train young people to take part in a 46-mile bike ride through London.
Students from schools across Sheffield attended training workshops in which they were taught to cycle on the roads safely. They also took part in two workshops, one on nutrition and another to mentally prepare them for the ride.
Dame Kelly Holmes, an ambassador for Prudential, said: “These are young people from around the UK who have the opportunity to get given a bike and learn all the safety skills needed to ride a bike, but with the pure vision of having something that they can progress to and achieve and feel good about at the end of it.”
Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 46 is a bike ride from the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace. Participants are provided with all of the equipment for the event.
The PruGOals campaign is a partnership between charities Prudential, Teach First, Centre Point, The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, Greenhouse Sports and the Transformation Trust. The scheme aims to drive young people to fulfil their potential regardless of their social or economic background.
The nutrition workshops were run by Dame Kelly Holmes Trust ambassadors, Olympic swimmer James Kirton and 10-time World Champion inline skater Jenna Downing. The students were taught about the different food groups, eating for stamina and how to optimise their energy.
Mr Kirton said: “It’s very easy to tell kids what to do, but we give them a task. They’ve got to do the bike ride so they have to make the changes.”
Mulenga Chafilwa from South London has recently become a PruGOals ambassador after taking part in the programme in 2016.
Mr Chafilwa said: “It’s not just about getting the bike and going out there training, it’s more about getting skills that they can transfer to life as they get older. Teamwork skills, co-operation, working with other members, speaking to different types of people and these are skills they can take with them in life.”
The students will continue training in preparation for the ride in July where over 100,000 riders are expected to attend of all ages and abilities.
Miss Downing said: “I learn something new every time I speak to one of these young people. To see them now compared to the start of the programme is great. They’re so much more confident and sociable.”