Hartej Randhawa, known as Tej, is a lovely and resilient boy who always has a smile on his face. Despite his challenges of weak hand eye coordination, weak core strength and low strength in his legs, he has managed to learn how to ride his bike independently, a feat that appeared unachievable until two years ago.
In July 2020 Tej, aged 8, couldn’t cycle. Various medical conditions make everything in life challenging for him. Tej struggled to get on his bike and lacked the strength to push away. He learnt to glide but struggled with balance and often he couldn’t get both feet on the pedals. When he did, he often toppled over.
He couldn’t control his direction, speed or stop using his brakes. However, with practice, encouragement from his parents and a new Frog bike for Christmas, Tej improved. He rode in a straight line and then in a circle. He was easily distracted and often wanted to give up, but he didn’t.
Each session was a challenge. Tej quickly tired, often became irritable and tearful, but he took inspiration from his hero Sonic the Hedgehog and carried on! He developed basic skills, began to manage his speed effectively and use both brakes to stop sometimes!
By February 2022, Tej’s core strength and skills had improved, but he still lacked consistency. Repeated sessions helped, as did two Level 1 Bikeability courses at school. He learnt to raise each hand off the handlebars – which was really scary for Tej, but he did it!
Tej’s goal was to ride with his Dad. Riding first with an instructor on cycle-paths and then as a threesome the confidence of both increased. After several family’ sessions – success! Tej and his Dad are now riding together on cycle-paths around their village, having great fun together and next year Tej hopes to participate in a Level 2 course!
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