We love hearing from Strider parents so when we got this letter and photo from Ryan's parents we knew we had to share it:
Ryan is a beautiful, active, funny, smart, amazing child. He is a six year old boy with diagnosed speech and motor Apraxia and ADHD. Life, this far, has been difficult for Ryan – he has a hard time with speech, fine and gross motor activities – plus he cannot sit still! He can understand everything you say but cannot always communicate with you understandably or effectively. An easy-to-understand definition of apraxia is difficulty planning and producing. Ryan knows what he wants to say and what movements he wants to make but cannot plan and produce the sounds/movement.
Ryan has had all styles of bicycles - from tricycles, “hot wheels,” scooters to training wheels on a “Big Kid” bike. Ryan always ended up frustrated and mad at the bike. When he was given his blue strider his Dad and I were skeptical. Ryan got his Strider for his 6th birthday, which, unfortunately is in November. Not optimal bike riding weather in South Dakota. Ryan rode his Strider throughout the house all winter. Dad and I decided that patching and painting walls was worth it. It took him a little while to get the hang of using his legs for movement while sitting on the seat but he finally mastered it.
What has his Strider done for Ryan? This bike has given our child so much and we are so thankful. Not only can Ryan ride his bike, he wants to. His bike has given him imaginative freedom. The strider has been a riding lawn mower, a garbage truck and a fire truck. The gross motor development has been huge – not only can he ride his Strider but his running, walking, jumping and all gross motor movements have gotten better and stronger.
If Ryan is playing outside he is usually on his Strider. The other day he was riding in a few inches of snow. Ryan wants to go on bike rides on the bike path and he is proud that he can ride his bike. The confidence that his Strider has given Ryan is priceless!
Keith and Erin (Ryan's parents)
New Research Shows Riding STRIDER® Bikes Significantly Improves Stability Scores in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Rapid City, SD (November 17, 2015) — Findings released last week show that Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) affects one out of every 45 children in the United States. Many people with ASD never learn to ride a two-wheeled bike because of challenges with balance and coordination. New research by Dr. Andrew Shim, Chair of Briar Cliff University's Kinesiology and Human Performance Department, confirms that children with ASD show a significant improvement in Limit of Stability (LoS) outcomes after riding a STRIDER No-Pedal Balance Bike for five weeks.
“Stability scores in all body planes were significantly improved during the five-week duration,” said Shim, who conducted the research at the Pier Center for Autism in Sioux City, Iowa. “Starting on a STRIDER Bike can assist children with special needs in transitioning to a regular, two-wheeled bicycle without the anxiety of falling or using training wheels.”
The five-week study involved eight children with ASD between the ages of six and 10 who had no prior bike-riding experience. They met three days per week for one hour, and on average, they rode for about 15 minutes each time, based on their tolerances.
A MANOVA, a multivariate analysis of variance, was used to determine significant changes, if any, during the five-week period. Variables such as static balance with their eyes open, unstable surface with their eyes open, and stability in four body planes (front, back, left, right) were measured consistently during the five weeks. Scores were recorded on a computerized balance plate which determined Center of Pressure (CoP) scores and Limit of Stability (LoS) scores.
Many parents like Amber Zorak of Cheswick, PA, also see behavioral and social benefits of kids riding STRIDER Bikes. Her 11-year-old son Dante Hoffman has ASD and competed in the Strider Championship Series Special Needs Race in Pittsburgh this year. “Dante is always smiling and laughing when he rides his STRIDER! His behavioral therapist incorporates it into his therapy twice a week. Riding makes him feel like he fits in and helps him bond with his 6-year-old brother who rides a pedal bike.”
Amy Heuston, a special education teacher at Central High School in Rapid City, SD, has 13 STRIDER Bikes, incorporating them into the curriculum and the students’ Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). She states, “We knew the STRIDER Bikes would have physical benefits, but I have seen their impact in five areas: Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech, Behavioral, and Social.”
The research was sponsored by Strider Sports International, the leading manufacturer of no-pedal balance bikes, which has sold over one million STRIDER Bikes since 2007. The STRIDER Bike line-up includes the 12” model for riders from 18-months up to 5-years old, and the 16” and 20” models developed for older children and adults with balance and coordination challenges.
A full report of Shim’s 2015 findings is expected to be published in early 2016. A 2012 study with three- to five-year-old typical children led by Shim at the University of South Dakota (USD) in Vermillion, concluded that participants benefited from using a STRIDER Bike by improving their balance and functional fitness, while likely reducing future injuries during their daily routines.
About Strider Sports International, Inc.
Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Rapid City, SD, Strider Sports designs efficient, no-pedal balance bikes for all ages and abilities. Strider’s mission is to simplify a bike to its essence, so proper size, weight, and simplicity combine to eliminate any fear of riding and instill confidence in the rider. STRIDER No-Pedal Balance Bikes are industry-leading training bikes that help children as young as 18 months learn to ride effectively on two wheels. Strider also manufactures balance bikes for individuals with special needs and for seniors wanting to stay active later in life. The patented STRIDER Balance Bikes focus on the fundamentals of balancing, leaning, and steering without the distractions and complications of pedals or training wheels. STRIDER Bikes are now distributed in more than 75 countries worldwide. In 2015, Strider sold its one-millionth bike. To learn more and to find a retailer in your area, visit www.StriderBikes.com, like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter and Instagram.
About the Strider Rider Fund
In its continued commitment to pay it forward, Strider Sports created the Strider Rider Fund in 2014 to facilitate providing balance bikes to non-profit organizations serving individuals in need. One percent of Strider Sports’ gross revenue from worldwide sales each month is allocated to the Rider Fund. In 2014, the Rider Fund donated more than $300,000 in bikes and accessories, and Strider expects to exceed this amount in 2015, with more than half of the fund earmarked for special needs organizations. To learn more about the Rider Fund, and to join the cause, please visit http://www.striderbikes.com/special-needs-bikes
Here's a little inspiration for your Saturday. If you fall down, make sure that you've got friends around to help pick you back on track!
We hope everyone is having a great holiday weekend.
Strider Sports is made up of all different types of riders. From our youngest STRIDER test riders (aka employee's children) to Ryan Mcfarland (STRIDER Founder and Chief Enthusiast) who likes multi-day rides on his KTM 990 Adventure.
This movie, "Why We Ride", looks pretty cool. Can your family identify with this? Maybe we need to make a similar movie with all different types of bicycles.
Have a great weekend with your little 2 wheeled enthusiast!
Here is a great new video to watch with your STRIDER Riders for some inspiration! These trials riders, including Danny MacAskill, show just how important balance is on a bike.
The balance skills your little one is learning on their STRIDER will carry through to all types of fun later in life...even if they never jump off a 10 foot pergola in Barcelona!
Check out the video, then turn off your screens and get outside! Have a great Saturday.
Riding a bike is fun!
Strider Balance bikes are fun!
Riding a bike is a healthy habit that can increase physical activity in kids, and help combat rising childhood obesity rates!
I am sure you can easily believe and understand these statements. However, here is an entirely new reason to get your toddler on a balance bike perfecting those skills:
The development of balance in toddlers leads to better cognitive learning!
Strider Balance bikes are scientifically proven to increase balance in toddlers. But balance is not just a physical skill.
Marjorie Woollacott, Ph.D., a professor of human physiology states, “Balance is a pillar beneath every skill we have.” Balance plays a larger role in the overall development of our children than we realize. Reading difficulties can occur and learning development will be delayed when balance and other systems are out of sync.
I will try to take all the scientific verbage and boil it down to my type of language. There are three parts to physical balance; eyes, body, and ears. Babies are born with the inner ear balance. As they become toddlers they engage the visual and begin to develop the bodily strength to increase their sense of balance. All of these systems must work together to form balance. For a baby and toddler that is in prime developmental stages it takes a lot of brain power to bring all three together. That same brain power and the same systems are required for all of the learning they will do. The more balance is practiced and perfected it becomes second nature. Less of that brain power is needed to focus on physical balance, and more of the brain can be devoted to learning.
So, now is the time! It is our parental duty to get kids out on those bikes having fun, and we can all rest assured we are helping our toddlers prepare for better grades in school!
Happy STRIDERday! We're all about balance here at STRIDER Bikes. That is one reason that we love Martyn Ashton, Chris Akrigg, and Danny Macaskill SOOOO much! If you've never seen a video of these three trials experts...you're welcome.
Just think, your STRIDER rider is laying the foundation for riding a wheelie on a railroad track!
Watch it with your STRIDER rider, then head outside and make some 2 wheeled memories of your own.
At STRIDER, we love bikes! We use them for fun, commuting, family time, getting groceries, and much more. This cool video from our friends at Rocky Mountain Bicycles will add an entirely new perspective to what can be done with a bike.
Watch the video and then get outside, ride your bike, and make some music of your own!
How can you win a Dream Adventure + $15,000 Cash + Everything GoPro Makes?
Simply by submitting an image and an answer to the question, "How Will You GoPro?"
Watch the video below and keep reading for some cool ideas you, and your STRIDER rider could enter!
The grand prize winner will receive a $30,000 dream trip accompanied by a GoPro film crew, $15,000 USD in cash, and Everything that GoPro makes!
If you aren't the Grand Prize Winner (out of the thousands of entries) you could still be one of the 9 weekly winners and win everything GoPro makes for being the most creative or original entry.
Here are some that we thought of:
1. Ride my STRIDER on every continent!
2. Race my STRIDER in Japan, Australia, South Africa, England, Venezuala, and the STRIDER World Championship in the USA.
3. Take an epic road trip with my family up the Pacific Coast Highway with plenty of STRIDER riding breaks along the way.
4. Follow the Tour de France and get my STRIDER signed by each stage winner.
We'd love to see some STRIDER parents get super creative and win some prizes. What would you do with the grand prize? Steal our ideas or come up with your own, but make sure to enter for your chance to win some awesome GoPro swag!
Full Details, Prizes, and Rules can be found on the GoPro site.
Here's a fun one from Vancouver, BC with a Dad, and his STRIDER graduate. What a great showcase of the freedom and family fun that can be had on 2 wheels!
In the end we catch sight of Lucas on his STRIDER already getting out on the pump track in hopes of keeping up with big brother.
Have an awesome Saturday with your little ones. Now get outside and make some memories!