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Moms, Daughters Join Challenge Together
This post comes to us from Elisabeth Reinkordt, co-founder of Sheclismo, an "all-women's bike-centric organization" based in Nebraska. Sheclismo has harnessed the National Bike Challenge as a way to unite and motivate new women to get on bikes. This story comes to us just after Mother's Day, with new members bringing their daughters into the bike fun, too.
When Sheclismo adventure racer Crystal Day signed up for the National Bike Challenge, her enthusiasm must’ve been contagious. Her daughters, Baylie and Kiara, asked if they could help out Sheclismo in logging miles.
Crystal posted this to Sheclismo’s Facebook group, and in short order, Sheena Christiansen’s daughters Ren and Nevaeh had signed up, too.
"I feel like no one can judge my when I'm on my bike. I feel unstoppable!" says Ren, 12. Nevaeh, who is 10, says "I love riding my bike really fast down big hills!"
Crystal, Baylie and Kiara on left. Ren and Nevaeh on right.
Sheena, who joined Sheclismo last fall for some off-season training as a member of the No Coast Derby Girls roller derby league, explained that Nevaeh didn’t take to biking until recently.
“She broke her elbow on a bike when she was 5,” Sheena said. “Would not get on a bike and ride for 5 long years! Last cross season when I did my first race she got on a bike and rode. She has been on her bike pretty much every day since. One of the proudest moments between a bike mom/dad and our new found bike grrl!”
Because of Lincoln’s first place finish in the National Bike Challenge in 2013, the city is excited to defend its status, and two of Sheclismo’s members, Elisabeth Reinkordt and Berly Brown, are also on the board of BicycLincoln, Lincoln’s community bike advocacy organization. The Sheclismo team is currently in second place for teams locally, with member Janine Copple regularly in the top three for local riders.
Sheclismo, which was founded in 2010, is an all-women’s bike-centric organization based primarily out of Lincoln, Nebraska. With over 130 group members and 30-40 regularly active riders, the women live up to the motto “Women Taking the Wheels.” The women working to put the club together come from many different walks of life and represent women in all stages of life.
“What unifies us is our love of ciclismo - cycling from whence our name was spun. We tour, commute, race, and generally find just about any excuse to go about on two wheels, even if that means running or swimming too,” said co-founder Sydney Brown.
“Besides having a good time, our mission is to provide a place for other women to get a start. We're here to help and have women who've done everything from racing at the top level to touring the U.S. to riding their bike to work 365 days a year,” said co-founder Elisabeth Reinkordt
Sheclismo’s co-founders Elisabeth Reinkordt and Sydney Brown both have moms who cycle, too. Nancy Harless Brown took to cycling after watching her daughter race, and before long, she was taking the racks and fenders off her cross bike and hopping in to races. She’s since competed on the road and in cyclocross at the Senior Games and Masters Nationals. Jane Reinkordt, whose 1956 Schwinn Spitfire was a Mother’s Day gift from her daughter a few years ago, decided to ramp up her cycling this summer, taking to longer and longer rides on the gravel roads around her farm. Jane and Elisabeth are planning to retrace Jane’s mother’s 1940 bike tour of New England in July.
Jane Reinkordt on her cruiser, off to ride country roads.
To learn more about Sheclismo, check out their blog at http://sheclismo.blogspot.com/, which features a regular Thursday column about bike commuting, or follow them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/Sheclismo or on Twitter @SHECLISMO.