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Preparing for Life and the CTCT

Thanks to the Nedbank Sports Trust Cycling Developing Programme 111 learners from across the province are geared up for the Cape Town Cycle Tour (CTCT).

The race take place on Sunday 8 March.

Between 7 and 9 February 88 boys and 23 girls from the Developing Programme, funded by Nedbank, booked into Soetwater Environmental Education Centre at Kommetjie for a three-day preparation session.

The learners of 11 schools in Piketberg, Saldanha and De Doorns, among others, have all been part of The Sports Trust Development Cycling Programme for the past 16 years.

According to Mike Tippett, Manager of The Sports Trust Development Cycling Programme, it takes a lot of mental and physical preparation to get the cyclists ready for this iconic race; so there is a strong focus on fitness, personal development and team building at Soetwater, facilitated in a fun, adventure-filled way.

“This year we added a third day to the programme to dedicate more time to personal growth, as we recognise how critical this is for these young people, many of whom come from financially stressed, challenging backgrounds,” says Tippett.

“We focused on developing a sense of self, goals, respect, responsibility, tolerance and acceptance.”

The development cycling programme targets 13 to 19 year olds.

According to Tobie Badenhorst, Head of Group Sponsorship and Cause Marketing at Nedbank, it is concerning to see learners dropping out of school, making them susceptible to the gangster life, drugs and other social ills.

“Through the cycling programme we offer a healthy lifestyle which requires commitment and concentration, and this, in turn, enhances their performance in the classroom,’’ Badenhorst says.

Aside from life skills the cyclists also prepared for the CTCT by learning how to approach the different stages of the race.

This included how to be comfortable on their bikes, cope with the wind and thousands of other cyclists. As it was the first time 20% of the learners were cycling this was a practical exercise.

The participating schools are Phoenix High, Orchard Primary, Ocean View High, Oval North High, Matthew Goniwe High, Diazville High, Beacon Hill High, Scottsville High, Steynsville High and Tafelsig High School.

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