Cycling Without Age program improving quality of life for seniors in Saskatoon
A program aimed at improving the quality of life for seniors has rolled into Saskatoon.
Originating in Denmark in 2012 with hundreds of chapters throughout the world, LutherCare Communities launched the first “Cycling Without Age” chapter in Saskatchewan.
The program allows seniors with limited mobility to go on recreational bike rides using a trishaw bike; a motorized hybrid of a tricycle and a rickshaw.
Marlene and David Kimber are residents at The Village at Stonebridge retirement community and said it’s a great way to explore their neighbourhood and socialize.
“It lets you get some fresh air,” Marlene Kimber said. “That’s probably the main thing.”
“We see more of the community than we do on foot,” David Kimber said.
Marlene and David Kimber riding in the trishaw bike with pilot, Mike Salud.Tyler Schroeder / Global News
LutherCare Communities CEO, Vivienne Hauck said it gives them the ability to get outside and become familiar with the community adding, “it also forms friendships with other residents when they ride side-by-side.”
The Cycling Without Age program enlists volunteer “pilots” to ensure residents have a safe and scenic ride.
“I take them around, show them the community like the schools the bike paths, lakes and ponds,” volunteer Mike Salud said. “They love it.”
The bikes themselves are not cheap. Hauck said each one is about $12,000, but a $10,000 grant from the Kinsmen Foundation made it possible for them to purchase their first one.
“We were very fortunate,” Hauck said. “It’s worth every penny. The fun that the residents have had it’s just incredible to see them.”
Currently, there are two trishaws that circulate between LutherCare sites in Saskatoon with plans to add two more by next year.