Immersive cycle training using virtual reality technology: a partnership between the Bikeability Trust and Brunel University, London
The Bikeability Trust is working in partnership with Dr Dan Bishop of Brunel University London, to generate evidence that immersive cycle training using virtual reality technology can complement and augment existing Bikeability training for children. It makes them more observant, more aware, and more confident cyclists. The immersive training also enhances children’s attitudes towards cycling on roads.
During the training, the children experience real-world scenarios viewed from a cyclist’s perspective, as they cycle on a static bicycle. They hear pre-recorded instructions that prompt them to look around and become more aware of their surroundings. Dr Bishop and his colleagues have also ‘gamified’ the experience, such that the children collect points, manifested in a series of reward sounds, if they look in the right places at the right times. Unsurprisingly, this gamified approach has proven popular with adolescents, a notoriously difficult group to engage with vis-à-vis cycling as a mode of active travel.
At The National Cycling Show 2023, Dr Dan is bringing immersive cycle training to the activity floor, giving guests the chance to try out the virtual reality training themselves.