Kyan and His Bike: A Love Story
by: Kyan Olshove (and Mom)
Kyan was an easy-going, happy, chubby baby. So easy-going that he didn’t even care to move that much. He never crawled and didn’t walk until he was 16-months-old. We had early intervention (occupational and physical therapy) to help him with his gross motor skills. From the time he was a newborn baby, his dad would put his car seat in the Burley and ride up Wayne Hill and all over town with him. He was given his first bike at age 3 and he did pretty well with training wheels. He got to the point that he could ride 3-4 miles on the TART trail with his training wheels and little 12-inch wheels. Each time he moved up to a bigger bike it was a struggle, but in time he got the hang of it. He also enjoyed riding on the tag-a-long so he could go on longer bike rides with his daddy. At that time, it was really about quality time with dad. Physical activity with people he cares about is Kyan’s love language. Well, that and speed!
When I was 10-years-old, my dad got me my first mountain bike and I haven’t been the same since. I fell in love with mountain biking! Through each challenge, my dad pushed me and encouraged me that I could do it. I did my first race in 2013: Conquer the Village kid’s race. I really liked it.
In April 2014, my dad and grandma got me a 29-er. I raced in Mud, Sweat and Beers and my dad rode along side of me to encourage me in the Ginger Ale division. Then I raced in Conquer the Village Beginner Men’s Division and after the race, I was invited to be part of NORTE! I love being part of a group who loves to bike as much as I do.
When I was offered a chance to race in the Iceman Slush Cup, I jumped on it. My goal was to get on the podium for the first time. When my dad wasn’t traveling for work, he rode with me almost every day, even when he was tired after a hard day at work. Because we practiced the course on VASA Domingos, the race wasn’t hard, just cold!
I did it! I made it to the podium in 5th place. All my practice (all 1,654 kilometers since April) paid off! I owe it all to my dad and NORTE!
Kyan just raced the Farmland “Free For All Bike Race” this past weekend and won the U12 category! It was a cold, windy but sunny 18km on a fun course. An awesome end to the season. Proud of you, buddy.
A NORTE! Story is a blog series highlighting N!YC riders/volunteers/supporters in our first year of inspiring Traverse City youth through bicycles. If you like Kyan’s story and want to support more of the same, please consider donating to our end-of-year KIDS ON BIKES + YOU campaign. Levels and awards can be found HERE.
And let’s ride bikes together soon.