LINCOLN SPECIAL OLYMPIC ATHLETES TRAIN FOR STRIDER CUP
Special Olympic athletes in Lincoln are now training for the City’s first Strider Cup Race from
9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, June 11 in the Railyard. Most of the 23 athletes who are learning
to ride Strider Bikes are on the Lincoln Shooting Stars, a Special Olympics Nebraska team
sponsored by the Lincoln Parks and Recreation Department’s Easterday Recreation Center.
Strider Sports International donated 30 of the no-pedal balance bikes to Special Olympics
Nebraska, with 22 designated for Easterday. In addition to the 12-inch model for younger riders,
the company has in recent years developed 16-inch and 20-inch models for older children and
adults with balance and coordination challenges. A 2015 research study confirmed that riding a
Strider Bike improved stability scores of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Three Strider Cup training sessions have already been held in Lincoln, and two more are
planned. Media are invited to cover the training from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Saturday, May 14 at
Easterday, 6130 Adams Street.
“The training program is a wonderful opportunity for children and adults to overcome anxieties
about riding bikes in a fun setting with peers,” said Kerry Zingg, Easterday Center Director. “It
was so exciting to see such joy and enthusiasm from the youth who participated in our first week
of training. We look forward to seeing the youth develop confidence in their abilities in the
weeks to come.” Zingg said the athletes range in age from three to 16 years old.
The bikes were assembled by Scott Anderson, a Special Olympics athlete and part-time
employee at Special Olympics Nebraska; parents of those in the Young Athletes Program; and
Lincoln Parks and Recreation volunteers. Parks and Recreation Carpentry Maintenance staff
built two rumble bars and a bike ramp for the Strider Bike Program.
Special Olympics Nebraska CEO Carolyn Chamberlin said the agency is excited about the new
partnership with Strider Bikes. “Many of our athletes who previously could not ride a bicycle
are excelling on the Strider Bike, and it means so much to see them experience the thrill of riding
like their typically-abled peers,” she said.
“My son Matt struggled to learn how to ride a traditional bicycle, but excelled on his Strider
Bike,” said Alisa Hoffman, mother of Special Olympics Nebraska athlete Matt, 15. “He finally
learned how to balance while riding and has since become more independent in his play.”
The Special Olympic athletes will compete in the Special Needs Races during the Strider Cup,
presented by Raising Canes Chicken Fingers® franchise in Lincoln. Strider Cup attendees will
receive free admission to the Strider Adventure Zone, where riders can test ride all three sizes of
Strider Bikes. Helmets will be provided. The event is the first of three national Strider Cup
Races. Participants in the Lincoln event as well as those competing in Salt Lake City, Utah and
Spokane, Washington can qualify for the Strider World Championship presented by FedEx in
July in San Francisco.
This is the second year the series has included Special Needs Races for athletes of all ages and
abilities. Strider has waived the registration fee for athletes in these races. Strider works with
Special Olympics teams in each race city, but the races are open to any Strider Rider with special
ABOUT SPECIAL OLYMPICS NEBRASKA
Special Olympics Nebraska is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization founded in 1972. Its mission
is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type
sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. The athletes have continuing
opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate
in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendships with their families, other Special Olympics athletes
and the community. For more information, visit sone.org.
ABOUT STRIDER SPORTS INTERNATIONAL, INC.
Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Rapid City, South Dakota, Strider Sports designs
efficient, no-pedal balance bikes for children as young as 18 months, as well as for older riders
with special needs. Strider’s mission is to simplify a bike to its essence, so proper size, weight
and simplicity combine to eliminate any fear of riding, to instill confidence in the rider and to
help people 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. In 2015, Strider sold its one-millionth bike. For more information, visit
The Flame of Hope symbolizes the Special Olympics goal: shining a light on the talents and abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. On May 14, 2015, the Flame of Hope was lit at a special ceremony in Greece. It was then passed to Law Enforcement Torch Runners in their role as Guardians of the Flame to ensure that the Flame of Hope stayed lit as it traveled across the Atlantic Ocean and in the first ever cross-county Unified Relay Across America until it reaches it’s final resting place at the World Games in Los Angeles.
On May 21, 2015, the Flame of Hope was split into three flames – kicking off a 46-day, cross-country relay to Los Angeles on July 25th. The Unified Relay Across America is bringing awareness to the Special Olympics movement, and creating communities where everyone is included and respected. To show our support for Special Olympics, Strider Sports International along with athletes from the Black Hills Ups of Downs Family Support Group donated and participated in what has become the Special Olympics largest grass roots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle.
With 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing 177 countries, along with 30,000 volunteers and an anticipated 500,000 spectators, the 2015 Special Olympics World Games will be the largest sports and humanitarian event anywhere in the world in 2015, and the single biggest event in Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympic Games.
Photos from our leg in the Unified Relay, special thanks to Rapid City Police Department for keeping us safe and being our own Guardians of the Flame!
Who isn’t aware of the big football game in February? Let’s see, I think it is called the Superbowl and it is being held in New Jersey. Yes, it is a big deal. AND, for all of you sport fanatics out there, we could also mention the Winter Olympics are in Sochi in February 2014. Yes, this also is a pretty big deal. While these huge events will provide us all with some hours of great television viewing - will they inspire you?
In June, months after these two events have passed, an event like no other will also be held in New Jersey! An inspiring and impactful sporting event!!
The Special Olympics USA Games are coming, and I would like to invite you to join us at Strider as we follow these true champions this year. With more than 70,000 spectators, the Special Olympics USA Games will have as many people in attendance as were at Super Bowl XLII. And with 3500 athletes competing in this National Event, it is holding its own compared to 5000 athletes from all over the globe in Sochi for the Winter Olympics. It is also… a BIG deal!! With 4,000,000 Special Olympics participants worldwide there will be events going on daily.
It is not only the size of the games that is the story, but rather, that these athletes will amaze and inspire you.
Here at Strider we are committed to learning about, and finding inspiration from this tremendous group of athletes. We are excited to be participating by hosting a STRIDER Adventure Zone at the Young Athletes Festival that is a part of the Games in New Jersey. Join us in our journey and learn more about Special Olympics this year by liking our STRIDER Bikes Special Needs Facebook page for updates and great stories leading up to the games this summer.
If you are already a fan, a participant, or a Special Olympics supporter, we would love to hear your stories and see your pictures. Help us spread the word!
STRIDER Bikes had the opportunity this weekend to show our support for South Dakota Special Olympics and gave a few kids the opportunity to ride on two wheels for the first time! We had athletes and siblings alike checking out the Adventure Zone and trying out the STRIDER Super 16 and ST-4. We couldn’t be more excited to spread the word about the benefits the STRIDER No Pedal Balance Bike has on children of all abilities, including early childhood development, kids just learning to ride, and children with Low Muscle Tone and Special Needs to name a few.
Be sure to join the all new Strider Bikes – Special Needs Community Page on Facebook!