Mountain biker finds road to KVG

So many women are put off cycling…

Having been only an occasional mountain biker, I tentatively got my first road bike and joined KVG in April and have never regretted it. Since speaking to female cyclist friends outside of Kent, I realise how fortunate we all are to have found each other and not only have a well organised club with many rides at different ability levels, but a female-only one.

So many women are put off cycling, by the unfriendly, arrogant, super-competitiveness by male-dominated bike clubs, which don’t cater for lower ability or new cyclists. If I hadn’t found KVG, I don’t think I would be cycling as much as I do now, let alone entering cycling competitions.

I ride 2 – 3 times a week averaging about 1 – 2 hours and up to 40 miles a day.  I now think nothing of riding long distances to get to another town, rather than using the car. Cycling has given me a freedom to combine transport with pleasure, whilst saving money, the environment and my health. 

I also overcame my anxiety about cycling in road traffic, which now has gone to the other extreme, as I have to remind myself to reign in my mountain bike mentality and avoid going too fast down hills!

KVG has been inspirational for me, to explore many different avenues for cycling – I did my first Time Trials and Triathlon (was second fastest female on bike), and have now moved into the Intermediate pace group. My aspirations for the next 12 months are to build up to 100 mile group rides, as well as entering speedy short distance TT, Triathlon and mountain bike races.

Thanks to the network of information and opportunities spread by chatting to members after rides, social events and daily Facebook updates, I can see what everyone else is achieving – whether it is a podium trophy, or a personal best to finish a long distance triathlon, or cycling holidays in the mountains, and makes me realise, that I could potentially achieve some of those things too.
I’m delighted that the club welcomes and promotes related cycling events such as Triathlons and Mountainbiking races. So whether you like to ride fast or slow, short or long distances, social or competitively, there is a wide range of rides and events to choose, and is giving me a chance to find out what I am best at, and most enjoy.

For the first time in ages, I really feel part of a local community – even a sisterhood. That I belong and fit into a genuinely friendly, non-judgemental and high achieving group of women, has been fundamental to making me realise how much I enjoy and benefit from cycling.

I wear my KVG kit with pride.

Anne-France Rix


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