PLYMOUTH, Minn. — Minnesota and Wisconsin have no shortage of amazing trails, but not everyone has the right gear to ride them.
"I have a daughter with special needs, and we were looking for a bike that both of us could ride because she can't ride independently. And so, I looked all over at local bike stores, couldn't find anything.
Ron Goldstein searched the globe and found a German company with just the right cycles. They're Hase bikes.
His daughter can ride in the front in a secured position, and Goldstein can ride in the back.
Inspired by what the bicycle did for his family, Goldstein started his own company, GB Kids, to make these adaptive bikes available at home. "This is more of a passion than a full-time job for me," said Goldstein.
To him, there is no off-the-rack sale. Goldstein assembles the bikes and fits them to the child or the adult, then services the bicycle as well. "If the kids or adults need special pedals to keep their feet in the pedals; if they need special grips, special handlebars, special seating, we have all of those things to accommodate those special needs."
Adaptive bikes don't come cheap. They range from $2,000 to nearly $10,000. "A lot of times families have to get financing through grants or other means in order to be able to afford the bike, and so we help them do that by steering them in the direction where money is available," explained Goldstein. "A lot of times it is paperwork that they need to have the right terminology and having been there as a parent you know over the years; we understand the system."
It may be a business, but to Goldstein, GB Kids is about finding a way to give back. "I like that; I enjoy helping families; I enjoy the challenge.
Goldstein and GB Kids have a bike at Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute and regularly work with Gilette Children's Hospital.
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If you want to learn more about these adaptive bikes, check out this link.