Kids are pedaling towards wellness

Apr. 24—RIPLEY COUNTY — For the fourth consecutive year, Nine13sports, a nonprofit organization dedicated to teaching students about the power of a bicycle, visited each middle school in Ripley County.

Through the Kids Riding Bikes program, students were not only encouraged to embrace physical activity through the act of riding a bike, but were also taught valuable lessons on the importance of healthy nutrition.

Approximately 927 students from Ripley County from our six elementary and middle schools were served through this program: Batesville Middle School, Jac-Cen-Del Jr./Sr. High School, Milan Middle School, South Ripley Junior High School, St. Louis Catholic School, and St. Nicholas Catholic School.

Kids Riding Bikes wrapped up for the year on April 12 at Jac-Cen-Del Junior High with an enthusiastic group of students.

Seventh-graders Lily and Abbie reflected on the experience with Lily noting, "It was a good way to wake up and boost my energy for the day." Abbie chimed in, "This helped us stay active by exercising and it was a lot of fun!"

Nine13sports' Kids Riding Bikes program offers students an immersive bike riding experience via an interactive indoor bicycling simulator that utilizes technology to gamify the experience of riding a bicycle. Students engaged with real-time statistics displaying their speed, power output, distance covered, and time elapsed, all while gaining insights into the significant role nutrition plays in physical activity.

In addition to participating in the physical activity, students were taught about their body's requirements when exercising, like the importance of warming up before exercise and how our bodies require different oxygen levels per workout.

"Kids Riding Bikes gamifies exercise and gets students moving while learning the benefits exercise can have on the body," Genesis: Pathways to Success Assistant Program Coordinator Amelia Comer said. "We look forward to continuing to bring this program back to Ripley County and watching the students smile and laugh as they peddle as fast as they can to move the figure across the screen."

Genesis: Pathways to Success thanked Ripley County Schools for incorporating the Kids Riding Bikes program into their classes and Nine13sports for implementing their programming in Ripley County again this spring.

They also thanked the Indiana Department of Education for providing the Explore, Engage, and Experience Grant, which offset costs for this program.

Kids Riding Bikes will return to Ripley County again in the spring of 2025.

To learn more about Kids Riding Bikes, contact Clarice Patterson by emailing at, calling 812-933-1098, or stopping by 13 E. George Street, Suite B, Batesville.

Genesis: Pathways to Success is an initiative of the Ripley County Community Foundation that serves as a perpetual resource to support, expand, and enhance educational and economic opportunities for local communities.

Genesis expands and enhances educational and economic opportunities that result in thriving communities by empowering entrepreneurship, innovation, and building upon the entrepreneurial spirit that drives economic growth.

Furthermore, Genesis is focused on developing critical workforce skills for students in Ripley County through innovative and creative STREAM (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Art, & Mathematics) activities that encourage students to apply curious minds and critical-thinking skills to real-world opportunities.

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