At Kinross Cycling Club we are very keen to promote cycling amongst women. We are a small, relatively new club with a fast growing number of women riders. That said we are always keen to attract more women to our club for both road and off road rides. Carolanne Cappie, continues to be our Women’s Coordinator and she along with Jane Timperley became Joint Chairs of the Club in 2016.
A few years ago at a time when Carolanne had been a member of the club for a year or two, she was asked to write an article about her experiences since joining the club. Now In 2017, she has been asked again to update and share her experiences so as to appeal to women who may wish to join a cycling club but possibly feel a little apprehensive about taking the first step to joining.
Here is Carolanne’s article
So, I decided to go back to where it all started…
I've been a member of Kinross Cycling Club since 2009. I joined the club really to cycle with like-minded people, maybe increase my speed and possibly increase my mileage. There was no way I would be doing TTs, there was no way I could do a Sportive - what 60, 80 even 100 miles - no way!! That is far too long a distance I just wouldn't be able to do something like that. I was just going to stick with the club runs, “that would be enough for me”. I had never done road biking with a club before so riding in a group was new. I had an average fitness level from doing all sorts of fitness throughout the years so hopefully I could keep up. I knew there would be re grouping points along the way on a club run so that no one would be left behind.
Before I joined I didn't give a thought as to who would be there ie would it be all guys, all females, an even mix? That didn't bother me. What I did think about was will they be friendly? I used to think that cyclists got their heads down, got into the zone and didn't talk about anything else apart from cycling. Well, maybe some are like that but the club members are all normal and do talk about other things which is great!
Something happened along the way doing club runs where my mileage was increasing and I wasn't going home after a Sunday run completely exhausted and I felt I was getting stronger. I was starting to cycle more to work too. I was starting to enter Sportives first the new Sportive Kinross and then the Etape Caledonia. That same year (2011) I started doing TTs within the club, the adrenalin rush is something else! These are not races but an event where you set your own personal best (PB). I also booked a rather challenging and demanding cycling holiday - The Raid Alpine in the French Alps which was amazing!
I don't think I could have done all these events last year without being part of a cycling club. As well as being fitter and stronger on the bike I am more confident riding in a group and on the road too. I must point out that I am not a fast cyclist, but have improved in the time I have been a member of the club. I do find that cycling with faster people does improve speed and stamina as you do try to keep up with them.
I find the club very friendly and now females make up about a quarter to a third of the membership with many regularly out on the club runs. The riders are all chatty and if you do have a mechanical issue, or want to purchase a bike related item there is always someone who will give you help or advice.
It would be great to see more members joining the club. Why don't you come along on one of the club organised runs: Saturday Social, Saturday Bun Run or Sunday Club Run and give it a go? There is something there for everyone, whether you just want to cycle with 'like-minded people' or are a serious racer.
What’s the worst thing that can happen? And you never know, you might just enjoy it !
Carolanne (Our Womens Coordinator)
If you are interested in coming cycling with us, then just contact Carolanne (via the Contact-us section) who is our Women’s Cycling Coordinator, Membership Secretary & Co-Chair. You will made more than welcome on any of the club rides.