Specialized Bicycle has launched The Specialized Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping create a healthier future for future generations by funding new research and programs to enhance children’s lives through cycling. Here’s a bit of info from Specialized founder, Mike Sinyard:
We have all personally experience how riding has improved our own lives. As most of you know, riding has significantly improved my life, in more ways than one. As a kid I struggled to manage ADHD symptoms and the inability to stay focused was something I had grown to accept as “normal.” My son, Anthony, had the same challenges when he was younger and was also diagnosed with ADHD.
After Anthony’s diagnosis he was prescribed Ritalin, but the medication made him feel horrible. I encouraged Anthony to stop with the medication and start riding. We began to notice that our ADHD symptoms would dissipate after riding and it was this discovery that began the journey to find solutions for ADHD symptoms through cycling.
We linked up with leading scientists in the field and funded ground breaking research and pilot programs in middles schools in middles schools across the U.S. The findings from this work were very encouraging and lead us to today. Now we have created our own 501c3, The Specialized Foundation, dedicated to funding scientific research and programs to explore and prove how riding can improve kids’ lives.
Specialized founder and CEO Mike Sinyard has long dealt with the effects of ADHD in his own life. The inability to stay focused and being easily distracted was something he had grown to just accept as “normal”. Yet, he noticed that those symptoms seemed to dissipate after returning from a ride. Mike also saw the positive benefits riding had on his son Anthony, who also suffered from ADHD. When the Bicycling Magazine article “Riding Is My Ritalin” came across his desk, he decided it was time to explore whether or not there really was science behind riding’s impact on the brain.
“As someone who is personally affected by and as a parent of a child diagnosed with ADHD, I hope this research provides new hope for the more than six million children and their families managing attention deficit disorders and that it serves as a catalyst for prioritizing physical education in our schools.”
At The Specialized Foundation, we imagine a day when doctors may prescribe cycling in place of drugs to battle ADHD, and other attention issues. Through cycling, we believe we can help kids by providing an alternative to prescription medications. To date, ADHD research has focused primarily on pharmaceutical options. Virtually no alternative forms of treatment have been studied. We are researching cycling as a solution that enables better focus in the classroom and overall health and well being. We hope to discover that cycling is a compliment to, and perhaps even a substitute for, medication for some children struggling with attention issues.
Over the next several months, we’ll be unveiling new and exciting announcements from The Specialized Foundation.
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