Marlene Julien: Dr Bike

Marlene Julien: Trax Dr Bike and Bike Club leader

Marlene Julien: Dr Bike

Marlene Julien is a Dr Bike in more ways than one: she is a hospital doctor and also a keen cyclist who volunteers as a Trax Bike Club leader in her spare time - encouraging women to cycle and learn how to fix their bikes.

Marlene loves leisure cycling but she rode her bike alone until spring 2011. The turning point came when she joined Trax off-road cycling club as the Welfare Officer, encouraged by Daniel Mintz who was chairman.

Marlene was keen to get more women involved with Trax. She trained as a Breeze champion and set up Trax Breeze rides for women. Marlene also realised that a big obstacle for encouraging new riders was the fact that many do not have a bike and are unsure what type of bike would be best to buy as a beginner. It was obvious to Marlene that good quality pool bikes which women could borrow for free were the answer to completely removing this barrier.

I was inspired by the passion and example of the Trax team to bring the joy of cycling to more people. It is important that everyone can take part, so we secured Smarter Travel funding for bikes which can be borrowed by riders who don’t have their own.

Marlene Julien

Marlene soon found that local women who had little or no cycling experience joined up. She explained: "Everyone has progressed to the longer led rides. All our rides are fun and our participant list continues to grow. Anyone can suggest routes and destinations. The feedback has been great, with riders getting a buzz from visiting new places, getting faster and fitter or simply being part of a friendly, happy group.”

Marlene is keen to keep improving the rides and to continue supporting local women to cycle: “We are looking for more ride leaders to join us so that we can have a more varied and ambitious timetable. We will also encourage and support Haringey women to organise and run cycling activities for their local communities.”

Trax is a Bike Club operating in a very disadvantaged area of London, near Boadwater Farm. Trax offer a wide range of cycling activities for everyone to enjoy. They are supported by Cycling UK via a Bike Club grant of £3,000.

For more details about Trax and cycling activities they offer for women, email mj@thetrax.co.uk.

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