BIKE Month is kicking off across the Eastern Bay, encouraging residents to swap from four to two wheels.

A range of activities will be available for avid and beginner cyclists, headlined by Go By Bike day on February 14.

To encourage people to get on a bike and get active, Go By Bike Day will include pit stops between 7am and 9am along popular cycle commuter routes.

Supporters from Sport Bay of Plenty and local organisations will be on hand offering free snacks and refreshments to riders, as well as spot prizes, like Whakatane Cycle Centre vouchers.

In Opotiki, the cycling pit stop can be found at the Blue Moon Four Square on St John Street.

Also on in Opotiki will be weekly Opotiki Dunes Trail rides and the weekly Opotiki Cycling Group Handicap Series.

The annual Go by Bike Day plays a big role in Sport Bay of Plenty’s Bike Month, which is designed to encourage people to give cycling a go, according to Sport Bay of Plenty recreation team teader Sonia Lynds.

“Cycling is a great way to commute to work and school, or to get around town. Not only is cycling good for you, it’s also good for the environment, reduces traffic congestion and makes you feel good,” she said.

Ms Lynds said Go By Bike Day and other Bike Month activities are a convenient and fun way for people to reconnect with the environment, instead of driving or spending time behind screens.

“Nearly a third of New Zealand adults spend less than 30 minutes a week participating in sport or active recreation.

“When you compare that with the Ministry of Health’s recommendation that adults do at least two-and-a-half hours of moderate or one-and-a-quarter hours of vigorous physical activity spread throughout the week, then it’s apparent we need to champion activities that make us sit less and move more,” Ms Lynds said.

Riders are encouraged to share photos of their cycle adventures by using #BikeMonthBOP across social media or tagging the Play in the Bay Facebook page.

For a full list of activities across the Eastern Bay, visit sportbop.co.nz/bikemonth.