Who We Are

Our mission is to teach children, particularly children with disabilities, how to ride normal bikes without training wheels. We partner with iCan Shine to bring the science of cycling to children.

Richard E. Klein, Ph. D. has spent over 30 years studying the mechanics of the bicycle. As President of Rainbow Trainers, Inc., Dr. Klein is applying his knowledge to help people of all ages learn how to ride a bicycle.

To read his story and the history of the bike program, download his book for free:  https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B_K1YkFZz58CbkhFbjYwdVFlMVE

13 thoughts on “Who We Are”

  1. We just move to CT and learned about the I Can Ride program. Unfortunately there are no spots left for my son. I was wondering if you know of any practitioners using your program privately.

    1. Dear Michelle,

      Thanks for your note and and question about practitioners. At the present time our ability to expand the program and its offerings is limited. Thus, to answer your question, at present we only have the camps that are offered by the iCan Shine Inc national charity. The corporation Rainbow Trainers Inc devotes it energies to seeing that the camps are offered across the contiguous United States (thus the lower forty-eight) as well as in a number of Canadian provinces. The role of Rainbow Trainers Inc is to see that the existing fleets of adapted bikes are maintained and also to continue to expand the numbers of available fleets. The tasks involved in the construction and design of these adapted bikes are intensely complex and demanding in terms of the technical skills required.

      Moreover, we (within Rainbow Trainers Inc) are cognizant of the demands of the larger population, and that includes what many refer to as the typical (non-disabled) population. I wish that I could give you a better answer, but at this point our energies and resources within Rainbow Trainers Inc are stretched to the point of maximum effort. Please bear in mind that we are actually a small corporation with no employees. All work is preformed by our family members however we do contract for outside venders to manufacture parts as required for our adapted bikes. In essence, our approach is to not be a manufacturer but rather an assembly point.

      Please note that our web site has a section related to home remedies, and you are encouraged to visit that site. As a last aside, you are located in Connecticut. I am a native of Connecticut, having been born and raised in Stratford along the banks of the Housatonic.

      Sincerely,

      Richard Klein Ph.D.
      President and founder, Rainbow Trainers Inc

  2. Dear Dr. Klein,

    You likely will not remember me, for I was not an exceptional student, and rarely sought to bring attention to myself from my teachers. But now, at 53, I look back on my academic career and still think of you as the most inspirational professor during my years at Illinois. I applaud the wonderful cause to which you are contributing your efforts, and wish you nothing but the best.

    Sincerely,

    Dan Ryan
    BSME UofI, 1983

    1. Dan — Thanks so much for your kind remarks regarding the old days when we were together at the University of Illinois. I retired in 1998 and at that time made the move to the St Louis area. A primary motivation was to be able to be closer to family and grand-kids in particular. The adapted bike program had its start during the winter of 1982-83. For about a decade I then challenged students in my systems classes to write essays related to the how and why of bike stability and handling. One thing led to another, and by the late 1980’s, I became involved in developing methods to permit children to learn to ride bikes. In 1997 two therapists in Toronto contacted me asking if I could teach children with disabilities how to ride bikes. By the summer of 1998 I was then retired, so the bike program has become a major activity in my life.

      I need to say that I feel so blessed to have been able to work with so many bright and talented engineering students typified by yourself. I need to also say that I certainly learned as much from them (as a collective group) as compared to what they might have learned from me. I will close at this point by again saying thank you for your kind thoughts and remarks.

      Sincerely,

      Richard

  3. Professor Klein,

    Please know you made an impact! I graduated in 1985 (BSME). Your controls theory class, was the best and most useful part of my engineering education. I still comment to others about the tests with points OFF for incorrect answers. How right you were to prepare us for our careers. I could not do a control theory problem to save my life today, but I remember many of your others lessons.

    Thanks,

    Jeff Norton

  4. Hi there

    I’m in Australia and wondering if anywhere to access your bikes. My 10 y old autistic son wants to learn but we are just not getting anywhere.

    Any help appreciated.

    1. Jason, our program has not made it outside of North America. Take a look at some of the suggestions on the site. A weighted wheel would be something to consider to slow the tip rate of the bike.

  5. Dear Dr. Klein,
    I wanted to reach out and thank you for your dedication to teaching children with disabilities how to ride. Your work has impacted my family directly with our participation in an iCanShine bike camp. My son finally learned to ride at age 9. He has difficulty with motor planning, coordination and was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder at age 3 following over a year in early intervention services. I worked with my son from the age of 2 with trike and on to small bike by 3. I was working so hard with him and thinking he would never ride…then I heard of the camp for kids and your amazing bikes. I can not express to you how much it meant to my son and our family that he finally was able to balance and really ride – in a week- after years of trying! Thank you so much for your work and your impact on our family.
    Mrs. Harrell
    Upstate NY

  6. A couple of years ago we drove down to Yuba City Ca. from Ashland Oregon where our now 13 year old son, who has autism, participated in the I Can Shine bike camp. We had such a good time and he did great. He wasn’t able to ride on his own by the end, but it laid the foundation.
    Then last year a similar program was in the next town over, so saving much expense, we gave it a try. The technology on the bikes was not as sophisticated as yours, nor was the camp as polished, but Griff was ready and by the end he was riding like a champ.
    However, though he is able to ride around a school track, a controlled environment with little in the way of obstacles to navigate, he is unable to venture out on our local bike path or other areas where there are many things, people, cars, animals, that he has to adjust for but cannot. His neurological development is still catching up and it is hard for him to process the information that comes at him quickly enough to keep himself relatively safe, e.g., a rider coming at some speed from behind leaving the possibility of him veering into the other biker. There is a potential for real injury. Griffen crashed once because a butterfly flew into his path, it doesn’t take much.
    Why I am writing you is because the rear controlled tandem bikes that were used at bike camp are perfect for giving him the experience of control and learning about the joys and safety issues of riding, without him having to navigate them by himself. This would also allow us to get out more and expand our horizons together. I would of course continue to work with him on his own bike, but in the mean time it would allow us to explore while his gut and brain heal.
    I have considered a traditional tandem, but the rear operated model accomplishes two things, they give him a real sense of riding solo and opportunity to practice with balance, getting accustom to obstacles and navigation; and secondly, it would allow me to safely keep an eye on him and monitor how he is handling the experience on a sensory level, as he as significant issues in this area.
    There is so much that is closed off to us because of the challenges we face with autism. Our culture has made some real strides to accommodate those with disabilities, but still there is so much we cannot do, especially in an out of the way place like Ashland. So I am asking if there is any way to purchase one of these tandem bikes. If you would please contact me by email I would appreciate it.
    Thank you

    1. Tim,
      Glad to hear about your success at the camp and I am sorry to hear about the challenges that you still face. Admittedly the camp environment is very sterile compared to the challenges that cyclists face on the road/trail. Here is some details on tandems that you can consider:
      We really like the tandem as well. The tandems that are use in the iCanShine program are custom built by Rainbow Trainers. Rainbow Trainers mission is not to sell bikes and as a result we cannot make our tandem trainer available for sale. However, there are several other companies that do sell kid-in-front tandems.

      1. Onderwater: This a company based in Amsterdam. They make a collection of unique tandems. Here is a link to a site that has some photos and should serve as a starting point for further searches:

      http://www.workcycles.com/home-products/child-transport-bicycles/onderwater-family-tandem-xl

      2. Kidz Tandem: This company is based in Grand Junction, CO.

      http://www.browncycles.com/tandems.htm

      Either of these companies focus on selling bicycles and should be able to provide a bike for you to purchase.

      Thanks,

  7. Hi, I have just watched a Television Program on Downs Syndrome Children and part of the program showed them learning to ride a bike in a Gymnasium. They used a bike which Ai understand you invented and adapted with the Roller wheel at the rear and an extended Handle to the rear for the trainer to assist.
    Could you please advise if you sell these Bikes, if you do, what is the pric structure. We have one of our daughters living in Seattle so if these bikes are available for purchase and exporting to New Zealand I would arrange for her to make contact with you.
    Thanks for your advice at your convenience.
    Cheers
    Mr Robin Warner
    Tauranga 3112
    New Zealand

    1. Robin,
      Thanks for your note. Rainbow Trainers has designed and deployed bikes that match your description. Our insurance policy does not provide us with product liability and we do not sell our training bicycles.

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