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rideATAXIA Blog

In January 2007, rideAtaxia was born when Kyle Bryant and his father began their 2,500 mile, 60 day cycling journey from San Diego to Memphis, TN to raise awareness and funds for FA research. Now functioning as a program of the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA), rideATAXIA offers single day, challenging and family fun bike rides at locations all across the USA. From firsthand accounts of Kyle’s inaugural journey to the most recent news about our annual bike rides, the evolution of rideAtaxia is chronicled in this blog.


Ataxian Athlete Initiative Announces 2016 Recipients


The Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA) is proud to announce the recipients of this year’s Ataxian Athlete Initiative (AAI).

The AAI is a unique program that provides adaptive cycling equipment to people with ataxia who have demonstrated the desire to stay active and healthy despite their disabilities. Friedreich’s ataxia (FA) is a rare disease that affects balance and coordination and has symptoms such as vision and hearing loss and often results in life shortening heart complications.

This year, the AAI was sponsored by Catrike, UVA Sun Systems, Front Burner Brands, The Texas Irish Foundation, and a new partnership with Global Genes through their RARE Patient Impact Grant program which helped fund the US recipients.

“The goal of the RARE Patient Impact Grant program is to fund projects that make tangible differences in patients’ lives. The Ataxian Athlete Initiative is a program that is the epitome of true impact and we are proud to support the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance’s efforts. We hope to expand the grant program each year so we can support more worthy projects in the rare community.” – Amanda Knitter, Director of Patient Advocacy, Global Genes

AAI grants are administered through a competitive application process. Applicants research the most appropriate adaptive cycling equipment to suit their abilities and describe how such equipment would help them to reach their fitness goals and improve their quality of life. 

2016 rideATAXIA NorCal

2016rideATAXIA NorCal 1June 4, 2016 was a beautiful day for a good ole bike ride. Considering that we dedicated this day to the rideATAXIA in NorCal. We had a very good turnout this year. Our ride had close to 300 riders. We raised $90,151.00 and the donations continue to roll in. This is incredible! 

rideATAXIA Atlanta 2016

At 9 am on the morning of May 15, 2016, a large crowd gathered at the trailhead at Fowler Park in Cumming, Georgia. Onlookers stared: why were all these adults riding tricycles? By the end of the day they would take home some inspirational stories about the rare disease Friedreich’s ataxia, and the people who wouldn’t give up without a fight. This was rideATAXIA Atlanta.

rideATAXIA Dallas 2016

RADallas20161Saturday, April 9, 2016 began a cool, cloudy morning in Denton, TX. The University of North Texas was home to rideATAXIA Dallas, and I began the day some 25 miles north of the cyclists starting point at the 50 m rest stop. Adjacent to the shores of Lake Ray Roberts, my family and I (at least part of my family), along with Outback steakhouse assembled our hospitality tents. Outback cranked up the heavy-duty portable grill to cook steak and chicken for the riders. My family coordinated drinks and energy-packed snacks. I became “rest stop greeter”, a job that I love, and did my best to spread FA awareness with the riders. (Click HERE to see the routes riders followed through Denton.)

It's All About the FAmily

The below article was originally published in the Winter 2015/2016 edition of the FARA Advocate.

rA Team CrizzyrideATAXIA belongs to the whole FA community and their supporters. The success lies in numerous families and their communities planning, recruiting, fundraising, volunteering, and cycling. The 2015 rideATAXIA program welcomed over 2,000 participants, including representatives from 93 FA families, who raised more than $750,000 in support of FARA’s mission to treat and cure FA.

There are a number of contributing factors to a successful ride program. First, our generous sponsors, in particular our National Presenting Sponsor, Outback Steakhouse, make the ride possible. Outback Steakhouse, joined by Carrabba’s Italian Grill and Bonefish Grill in some locations, prepares an unparalleled post ride meal that sets rideATAXIA apart from other area rides. In addition to working with some incredible sponsors, rideATAXIA is honored to work with many dedicated FA families who help us execute each ride. 

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