Regional cycling sports in Victoria, Australia have been quite popular since the late 1800′s. And like in a lot of small country towns cycling is not only a sport but also a means transport and a healthy pastime activity. Over the years the popularity of the sport has been boosted by a number of things in the state such as:
- Modern development of bike networks in cities and regional centres around the state.
- The increasing number and success of racing clubs, good examples being the St Kilda cycling club, and the Audax Australian Cycling Club.
- The growth in numbers of the regional cycling trails.
- The many numbers of cycling races that take place in the state such as the Herald Sun Tour
- The large organized rides that happen all year round such a the Great Victorian Bike Ride.
And to to top everything off, regional Victoria has a very diverse mountain bike trail network that cyclist use in training as well as competitions. Not to mention if you prefer the track style of racing there are also about 20 velodromes in Victoria that keep this type of cycling alive and attract quite large crowds particular when World Cup events are held each year.
The popularity of cycling over the years has helped produce a number of champion cyclists such as Tour De France winner and former World Champion Cadel Evans, Simon Gerrans one day classics specialist and previous winner of Milan San Remo and Matthew Lloyd polka do jersey winner of the Giro D’Talia. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves though as all success in cycling is because of the hard work and dedication from the parties involved.
Which brings us to the crux of this article – in order to find and cultivate young talent that can become world leaders in cycling and even from a local base further the regional cycling sports in Victoria, the government needs to step in and give a hand.
Why The Government Should Assist Regional Cycling Sports?
When a certain region shows interest in a sport local government and state need to assist and provide the necessary infrastructures and funding to support the parties involved. A growing trend is Public and Private Equity Partnerships ( known as PPP ) which help to facilitate and remove red tape to providing better facilities. For cycling in regional centre’s in most cases the best direction to take is partnering with the PPP.
There are multiple other reasons why Local, State and National government should assist in subsidising regional sport:
- Income and Employment
A very significant and important reason why the government should intervene and offer a helping hand in the cycling sports is income generation and employment. With the current economic situation, the creation of employment is vital in every state and country. In terms of sports, there are many competitions and events that create a source of income for the sportspeople involved in cycling. The capital generation is not only limited to the cyclists. There are other parties such as vendors during the events, the organisers, and local businesses which profit from the influx of sports tourism plus multiple other people and organisations that make the races possible.
A wonderful by product of cycling is that because it is such an all consuming activity with regard to time and passion most youth involved with riding and racing have fewer chances ti get involved in criminal activities since they spend most of the time in their cycling clubs and training. So inadvertantly, by subsidising regional cycling sports, the government also deals with a number of social issues with just a single blow.
Regional cycling is quite popular in Australia and with events comes different avenues in which the government can increase its revenue. First there is domestic and international tourism which is a great source of income to the government. Then there are the charges and taxes that have to be paid in different aspects of the races and events. So by making removing the institutional red tape that governments like to get wrapped up in it easier for those involved to access the races and organise events, plus as a benfit the government will be increasing its revenue significantly by lowering the barrier of entry without oppressing the involved parties.
There is nothing as great as being recognized around the world. Cycling has managed to put Victoria on the world map of sports. There are quite a lot of cycling activities that take place in the state and this attracts great attention from all over the world. There are always many cyclists training and taking part in the events all year round. Some of the spectators are tourists who enjoy watching the sports. And a part from an increase in revenue, the state also benefits in exchange of cultures.
Cycling is an intense sport that is quite beneficial in terms of health and body fitness. By subsidising the sport, the government makes an important step in improving the health of many people. Cycling has quite a lot of health and fitness benefits and the more people that take part in the sport, the healthier the state will be. By encouraging cycling, more and more people will opt to use it as a means of transport thus reducing pollution and traffic.
How Can The Government Assist?
Well, it is not easy for a government to help the people on the ground directly. Luckily for regional sports in Victoria, there are cycling clubs. In each club, there are cycling members and these are the people on the ground. It is easier for local government to have a better outreach program to the through the cycling clubs. There are many clubs around Victoria and the sports grants from the government have a significant impact on the locals especially those that are actively taking part in the sport. There are even cycling clubs specialising in Mens Fixies and track racing on the velodrome.
A part from just giving the grant money, the government can also support regional cycling sport via improving the infrastructure that is associated with the sport. This includes including all the trails both major and minor and implementing continual maintenance and improvement plans for them where necessary. The velodromes should also be well maintained and if need be expanded to hold more capacity if the requirement is there.
There should be more campaigns by the government in an effort to promote and popularise the cycling events that take place all year round. As this will go a long way in encouraging more participants to get off their butts as well as provide an increase in sports tourism.
The government should identify all the cycling clubs in Victoria whether small and big so as to partner with them and focus on methods that can improve the sport. The partnering should include funds but the running of the clubs should entirely be left to the club. The only thing that should be made clear is the use of the funds. Through the clubs, the people interested in cycling can easily access the necessary gear at low or no price leading to more events and more pro cyclists.
7 Things To Look For When Selecting A Sporting Club
A sporting club is simply a club that has been set up for reasons of playing sports. There are different clubs ranging from simple organizations where members play together, unpaid, paid, to large organisations with professional teams and players. Clubs are great if you are looking for a place to give you a sense of belonging and access to equipment you do not own.
Things to look for When selecting a sporting club
The price or cost to participate in the club is vital. This is because this is the money you will be taking out of your pocket to pay for the services you get at the club. You should ensure that the club you are interested in provides value for money and fulfills your sporting requirements plus is friendly to your pocket book.
The location of the sports club really matters because it will determine how easy you can make it for training sessions. It’s best if possible to choose a club that is close to your home so as to ease the hassle of travelling for your training or games. And if you choose a club that is close to your work place you can have a bit of fun after work and de-stress on your way home.
Prior to joining any sporting cub you should enquire whether the organization has the necessary papers from relevant authorities that allow such operations. This will tell you how genuine the organization is as those that are legitimate will be more than ready to show you the licensing and any other papers that you might require to see.
You can visit the club you want to join and have a look around. Check for cups and other things that indicate their history. If you are interested in taking part in competitive sports, you might want to know what the club has achieved in your area of interest since its inception. It is good to choose a club that will help you maximize on your potential and achieve your goals.
A sporting club is useless without all the necessary equipment. Go for a club that has everything that you need to achieve what you want. Take a look at their gym, grounds other equipment to ensure that you will have what you need for maximum results.
Most people are in the 9-5 work bracket and if they need to attend a session at the club, then the scheduling of the sessions have to be favorable to them. Find a club that will allow you to go to work and still have time to train for a while.
This might be the last point here but is probably the most important of them all. Before joining a sporting club, you should enquire to find out if they have insurance. This is important because every now and then playing sports can result in an injury and you might want to know to what extent their insurance will cover you in case you are in an accident within the cub.
The contributor of this article is VeloMofo.com.au
The role of the Audax Australia Cycling Club
The Audax Australia Cycling Club is a non profit organization that concentrates on providing a platform that can be used by cyclists in improving their cycling skills. The club does not venture into the competitive nature of the sport, rather it gives cyclists a chance to ride and gauge their ability in long distance cycling of 50 to 1200 kilometers. The rides can be used in setting different goals that the riders can beat and this is the main reason why there are many participants and members of Audax. The good part is that you can enjoy what Audax has to offer whether you are a member or not. The difference is that members gets a number of benefits such as personal accident liability insurance while riding, journals and checkpoints with info on local an international rides.
Audax Austrlia Cycling Club Roles
The club is dedicated to giving cyclist a chance to enjoy what they love best and thus its roles include:
- Providing a Past Time Activity
Away from the competitive sports arena, most people would rather enjoy cycling as a hobby or as an activity that occupies their free time. In this respect, the club has made it possible for this group of people because they can simply join as members or non members and take on some of the different rides available. Since it is non- competitive, the rides are actually a great experience that is both great for exercise and personally fulfilling with a good sense of achievement.
- Providing Achievement Platforms
As much as Audax Australia Cycling Club is not associated with competitive cycling, it is a vital part of the cycling world, just as much as spin class is to training for racing. This is because the club provides a great platform that both pro and amateur cyclists can use in training as well as setting their personal records. The different rides can be used in improving cycling endurance that is critical in competitive races. This is one factor that draws a wide range of professional cyclists to the club.
- Providing An exercise Platform
It is easy to cycle on your own and exercise but it is usually better to do it under guidelines and set distances as this can assist you to achieve a great deal of goals. Providing an exercise platform to the members is another of Audax’s roles. There are many people who would love to cycle for long distances but doing it alone is quite boring, can be dangerous and even be discouraging at times. Through the club, the members can take the rides in groups and the company can be the driving force that leads them to achieve set goals.
- Providing Cycling Information
For members of the club, some of the benefits include deeper information on the culture and history of cycling and other great stories relating to the sport from all over the world. And another role of the club is to provide this info to the members so that they can stay at the top of their game and adopt new techniques that will enhance their riding. On a long shot, the club has the role of ensuring that the riding tradition is kept alive and that there are more healthy people through cycling exercise.
More information on Audax can be found by clicking here.