Vanessa Ruck, known as The Girl on a Bike, recently spent four days in Leeds where she visited Carr Manor, Garforth Academy and Wetherby High School to talk about a project she has deemed a 'Because I Can’ attitude.
The movement is about giving young people the right tools to take on life, despite the setbacks and uncertainties that we all face, especially in light of covid-19.
Born from real life experiences that Ms Ruck has had, the workshops bring highly relatable lessons and tools to help better equip youths, and adults alike, for the battles and challenges of life.
Organised via Leeds Faith in Schools, The Girl On A Bike, delivered free workshops and assemblies on finding ways to make things work, dealing with the lows and the setbacks, whilst moving steadily towards one’s goals.
After being hit by a car while cycling in 2014, Ms Ruck's world was turned upside down, resulting in seven surgeries and a roller- coaster of mental and physical recovery spanning seven years.
Through her recovery she discovered motorcycles, becoming known as “The Girl On A Bike". It started with getting a commuter bike after the accident as she needed to get to work but found the physicality of riding helped with body strength and then she decided to get a dirt bike, even though it was five months following another bout of surgery before she could get on it.
Then she started competing and racing at events and this has since taken her The Red Bull Romaniacs extreme hard enduro rally - a 600km race in Romania.
She added: "Motorcycles, something I started post-accident, have become my love and passion. If you’d asked me seven years ago whether I would be racing off-road motorcycles I’d have probably choked on my drink. But life takes us on some amazing journeys.
"People can relate to my story because everyone goes through bad times. Hopefully I am inspiring others to show that if I can bounce back after seven surgeries, others can get through their hard times."