Culpeper County Public School students get to ride their bicycles this year - thanks to a new grant.
Culpeper County Public Schools received $7,500 from Culpeper Wellness Foundation and the Northern Piedmont Community Foundation to start a new cycling program at both Culpeper County High School and Eastern View High School.
A total of 50 bikes, 25 at each school, will be used in advanced physical education classes for lifetime sports.
“By introducing mountain biking in the schools, we are offering kids an opportunity to get involved with a lifelong sport,” Culpeper Wellness Foundation President Shari Landy said. “They'll learn new skills, see improvement in their abilities over time and increase self confidence. With concerns about obesity, heart disease and diabetes on the rise, we are pleased to help fund this initiative that promotes a fun and relatively low-cost outdoor physical activity.
“CCPS believes this a great example of community organizations giving back and it demonstrates that partnerships are essential to creating more opportunities for our students,” the school district said in a release.
At Eastern View, physical education teacher Paul Lutz has had students out on the bikes three times now. He said the enthusiasm they’ve shown for the program is contagious.
“They are getting the cardio aspect from it but it’s also a whole body workout,” Lutz said. “If I was to say ‘hey guys, we’re going to go out for a run,’ they would all be boo-hooing. If I say ‘we’re getting on the mountain bikes,’ they’re excited. They don’t realize they’re getting the exercise benefit from it.”
The Trek bikes were purchased, with a discount, through Haymarket Bikes. The EVHS students have been riding trails around the campus, normally putting in between 3.5 to 4 miles per ride.
“We’re incorporating it into what we have, this semester we’re just using our physical conditioning classes to see what works and what doesn’t work,” Lutz said. “Hopefully next semester we’ll used them in the lifetime activities class.”
Logan Ashwell, a junior, said he enjoys going out for rides.
“You’re working everything,” Ashwell said.
Senior David McMillion said his class looks forward to going out on the bikes.
“It turns the workout into something fun, you get to see the campus,” McMillion said.