PETALING JAYA: Hakim Amir is so convinced of the benefits of cycling that he has got his two children hooked on the sport as well.
The three often cycle around Taman Bandaran Kelana Jaya, which happens to be a stone’s throw from their home.
“They ask me about cycling when they see me going for rides over the weekends.
“I absolutely want to encourage them to take up cycling, so I bought them bicycles, small ones of course. They like it and are getting better at it but first, they have to have their training wheels off, of course,” Hakim, 47, said with a smile.
At the park, eight-year-old Imran Amir often eggs on his sister Iris Amelin, five, telling her to pedal faster to keep up with him.
“I practise everyday,” Imran said.
Since he began cycling seriously two years ago, Hakim, who is Astro Entertainment Sdn Bhd content development (Malay) assistant vice-president, has discovered many cycling routes across Malaysia.
“We have some really good routes both on and off road, with many cycling trips and packages.
“Some of my friends recently went to Sabah and Sarawak. The views they saw in Kundasang, Sabah, were really splendid.“
For those who do not want to go on long rides, Hakim pointed out the many initiatives which allow the public to loan a bike and ride around the city during car-free days.
“We can start small. We don’t have to go on touring trips or long rides but ride around the city,” he said.
Hakim is convinced that the sport has many benefits that go beyond health.
“Yes, it’s a very good way to stay in shape and lead a healthy life but it is also a great way to come together, whether as a family or community.
“There are many ways we can achieve unity but cycling is an obvious choice, for me at least. I think the Ride For Malaysia event is a brilliant idea,” he said.
On July 30, the Star Media Group and property developer Sunsuria Bhd will host the cycling event to inspire national unity and patriotism in the run-up to National Day.
The event, to be flagged off at 6.30am at Sunsuria City, is a timely opportunity for people of all ages and cultures to come together and enjoy the outdoors.
Whole families are welcome, and there will be special prizes for the most sporting family of four, the best looking couple and those who come in fancy dresses.
First prize of RM2,000, second prize RM1,000 and third prize RM500 are up for grabs in each category.
For more information and to register, go to sites.thestar.com.my/rideformalaysia/.
For group bookings, call 03-7967 1388 and ask for Events.