Kids and Olympian Take the Single-Track Trail

November 1, 2014, Department, by Amy Stahl, Marissa Bracamonte

An Olympic gold-medal cyclist helps develop a kid-focused mountain biking trail in Boise, Idaho.As the mother of a 3-year-old son, it’s no surprise that two-time Olympic gold medal cyclist Kristin Armstrong saw the perfect opportunity to improve the health and safety of local kids in the city of Boise, Idaho, with the addition of a brand-new single-track mountain biking trail. The executive director of community health for Boise’s St. Luke’s Health System, Armstrong knows that parks and trails are ideal for children learning to ride bikes, which is why she was such an advocate for the .6-mile trail in Boise Hill Park that contains small bumps and switchbacks. Adults traveling at faster speeds may not enjoy those features as much, but Armstrong says the challenges are beneficial to the children, adding that she “felt that there weren’t really any safe places that were not either uphill or downhill, or [where] people were blasting by you at super-fast speeds.” Boise Mayor David Bieter has supported Armstrong’s initiatives as another driving force behind new parks and amenities for the city, acknowledging they are a great way to get kids active and involved outdoors. “I am pleased to report that neighborhood leaders are recognizing that they have a role in helping to combat childhood obesity and provide kids with fun, healthy activities close to home,” Beiter says. 

Amy Stahl is the Community Relations Manager for Boise Parks and Recreation. Marissa Bracamonte is the Editorial Intern for Parks & Recreation Magazine.