Cyclocross is all about messing about with bikes in a safe and fun environment. We’re now running dedicated sessions for children to do just that during the school holidays. Full days (10:00-15:30) and half-days (10:00-12:30/13:00-15:30) are available. The focus is on FUN and developing confidence and skill on and off the bike. It is NOT about racing each other up hills and seeing who’s fastest!

Example activities

  • Cornering – balance, weight distribution and looking for grip on different surfaces
  • Dismounting and remounting – confidence performing this skill on both sides of the bike will have them running rings round their opponents!
  • Ruts – like an inverted balance-beam on a bike (harder than they look!)
  • Bunnyhopping – at the outset it is an achievement to get each wheel over a small obstacle but we can take them right up to 40 cm boards when they are ready!
  • Basic bike knowledge (e.g. knowing if their tyres are at the right pressure, putting a chain back on, checking the wheels are secure)

CX skill level awards

We are trialing an award scheme for cyclocross (a bit like swimming level certificates), so your child will come home with a booklet showing what they have done, along with what skills they might want to develop or move on to, and maybe even a ‘Certificate in Recognition of Skill’!

The people

The camps are led by Alex Forrester (author of The Cyclocross Bible). All coaches are qualified with British Cycling (which includes training in safeguarding children in sport). 

Signing up for a camp

Our February half-term sessions are now fully booked. We will soon release dates for the Easter holidays. Please contact alex@howtorideabike.co.uk if you would like to be informed about future sessions or if you have any other questions about the camps.

The venue

At Southampton Outdoor Sports Centre we have an excellent mix of terrain on which to have fun honing our cyclocross skills. There are grassy areas for cornering and setting up obstacles, banks with a wide range of lengths and gradients for riding/running up/down and off-camber practise, wooded single track, and even a practice rut! We pretend not to be bothered by rain but we have indoor facilities if it gets really bad.