For elderly or disabled people confined to wheelchairs, it may be impossible to enjoy the health benefits that come with bicycling.

But now with the Healing Rides program, they’re given the same joy of biking as anyone else.

The program pairs volunteer pedalers with guests with limited mobility for nature rides through Constitution Trail, a 36.4-mile rail-trail in Illinois. The bicyclists use special wheelchair-bikes called Duet Bike Chairs that allow the passenger to ride in the front of the contraption, rather than being pulled along behind.

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Over 150 participants have benefited mentally and physically from the outdoor activity, including the founder of Healing Rides Barbara Brown. Barbara turned to biking after her battle with cancer in 2014. After experiencing its incredible therapeutic qualities, she launched Healing Rides in 2015.

“I know first hand what it is like to be so weak from treatment, that getting outside for fresh air and sunshine seems like an impossible event,” says Barbara. “Since that time, I have learned about the Duet Bike Chair. This bike chair, along with big-hearted volunteer drivers, can help others feel like part of the world again by feeling the warmth of the sun on their faces, and fresh air in their lungs.”

(WATCH the video below)


Pedal This Story Over To Your Friends (Photo by Barbara Brown)

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