The ex­pert’s view: Am­manda Ma­jor

Cycling Weekly - - Feature -

Head of ser­vice qual­ity and clin­i­cal prac­tice at Re­late, the re­la­tion­ship coun­selling ser­vice, Am­manda Ma­jor be­lieves there are def­i­nite ad­van­tages for cou­ples who cy­cle to­gether.

“It is about hav­ing a bond,” Ma­jor told us. “Whether that’s cy­cling or bird­watch­ing, it is about that fun el­e­ment of be­ing to­gether even when it is hard work — like cy­cling uphill — you’ve got that shared en­deav­our.

“You’re do­ing some­thing healthy which main­tains good men­tal health and con­trib­utes to that sense of the two of you get­ting away from it all and spend­ing time in each other’s com­pany, which is im­por­tant for a cou­ple.

“Be­ing com­pet­i­tive might also en­hance the re­la­tion­ship, but the down­side is if that be­comes blam­ing. The per­son who is bet­ter needs to make al­lowances and that should be part of help­ing them im­prove in ways that make sense and feel nur­tur­ing and sup­port­ing. You need to ad­just your own pri­or­i­ties.”

Even if we find time to oc­ca­sion­ally ride with our part­ner, cy­cling is a time-con­sum­ing pur­suit, with the po­ten­tial to take you away from your loved one, some­thing which Ma­jor says should be ad­dressed to re­tain har­mony within a re­la­tion­ship.

“Strong, healthy re­la­tion­ships are able to tol­er­ate sep­a­ra­tion when a part­ner might be pur­su­ing a hobby. How­ever, that needs to work for both part­ners and the cou­ple need to be able to ne­go­ti­ate that. What can some­times hap­pen is that peo­ple get more and more into it with­out the cou­ple dis­cussing the im­pli­ca­tions for their re­la­tion­ship. The key thing is to keep check­ing in with a part­ner about how they’re find­ing it.”

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