What's Cycletherapy?

Cycletherapy is a youth project that engages young people whose needs are not being met through mainstream education. Using mountain biking as a medium (riding bikes and fixing them), Cycletherapy challenges the negative ways these young people think and feel about themselves to help them change their destructive behaviours. Cycletherapy improves physical and mental health, provides a form of transport that offers independence, promotes employability skills and, most importantly, exposes them to an honest, compassionate relationship model that nurtures and values them. Under these conditions, young people thrive.

Contact Cycletherapy at lee@velocitylove.co.uk or call 07581 699109

Who are we?

Cycletherapy was established and is run by Lee Craigie, the Scottish Mountain Bike Champion and member of the Great Britain Mountain Bike Team. Lee has 13 years experience working with young people using outdoor adventurous activities and has trained for 3 years as a child and adolescent psychotherapist. She is well known and respected in the local community through her previous work with The Highland Council's Pupil Support Service. Her racing at national and international level inspires the young people she works with and encourages them to fulfil their potential too.

Cycletherapy draws on the competencies of 4 other experienced staff members to deliver its service Highland wide and we operate out of Velocity Cafe & Bicycle Workshop, Inverness.

How we work

Young people must voluntarily chose to engage with Cycletherapy. Initial contact establishes an agreed contract between the young person and their Cycletherapy worker for an 8 week block of work (one half day per week). Participants work in a one to one environment delivered from a Velocity mobile unit. We ride all over the Inverness and Ross shire area and maintain bikes out of Velocity Cafe & Bicycle Workshop in Inverness but the focus is always on the personal development needs of the young person rather than hard skill acquisition.

Cycletherapy provides a report compiles with participants at the mid point and end of the 8 week contracted block and collaborative measures are taken to ensure any learning is not lost.

After the 8 week block Cycletherapy participants can progress onto working in small groups (with a ratio of 2 staff to 4 participants) through a 6 week Build Your Own Bike Course at Velocity Cafe & Bicycle Workshop which aims to further improve young peoples' riding and mechanical abilities and in doing so, improve feelings of self worth and resilience.

Our work so far

Cycletherapy has already made an enormous difference to the young people and their families that have been through its programme. Some of these young people had never engaged with anything in their lives before becoming involved with Cycletherapy. Cycletherapy attendance records sit around 98% and all participants have engaged, to some degree, with education or training after their conclusion. They have increased their levels of confidence and self esteem and developed a work ethic that other professionals in their lives have been surprised and delighted by.

Refer a young person to us

If the child you wish to refer is not on an Activity Agreement contact your Social Work line manager, Integrated Services Officer or Area Education Office to find out how best your referral can be funded. Please don't hesitate to contact Lee if you require help to find the most appropriate funding stream.

Cycletherapy is partially subsidised and charges £80 per half day for 1:1 work plus travel at the Highland Council mileage rate and £20 per hour for attendance at Child Plan or Core Group Meetings. The cost of Build Your Own Bike courses vary.