Why I started Ride For Unity – to change the cycling narrative

Kofi Kyei shows us what inclusive cycling can look like and why it’s fun to ditch the labels

(Image credit: Future)

For a cyclist as fit and agile as Kofi Kyei, he is one relaxed guy when it comes to labels. Leaning against the spacious boot of the sporty ŠKODA Superb estate, he muses: “as long as you pedal a bike somewhere then you’re a cyclist right?” 

One More Mile, with Kofi Kyei

It’s this simple approach to help all cyclists that powers Kofi on his mission to change the narrative he always saw as a cyclist – “I wouldn’t really see people that looked like me taking part in the sport,” he says. “It’s being able to change that conversation around what a cyclist looks like or what a cyclist might do.” 

Ride For Unity was set up following the murder of George Floyd and gave people an outlet during those challenging times to talk online, at a time when pandemic restrictions made such connections even harder.

A way to encourage people of “all shades, sexes, sizes and sexual orientation” to get on their bikes, Ride 4 Unity came about very organically. Building its community virtually has meant connecting riders from as far afield as Los Angeles and South Africa. Kofi started the social accounts, bringing others onto Instagram Live and giving people ways to support each other. 

The idea blossomed and today you can see the smiles on the group not just on Zwift and Instagram, but also at outdoor rides like the gruelling Grinduro in Wales. Breaking boundaries can also be about just having lots of fun.


(Image credit: Future)

And as the face of a broad community, Kofi is keen to align his aims with those of the Laureus Sport For Good Foundation that helps support children and young people globally. That’s why 20% of all clothing sales from Ride For Unity’s stylish range go towards their work. 

Being a dad of three, Kofi keeps active with his children too and loves to see their progress on the bike. Getting behind the wheel of the ŠKODA Superb for a day out, he explains it’s not just the generous boot space but also the sleek styling, shiny alloys and driver’s massage chair that help him arrive ready to go one mile more. 

And with the tech onboard the Superb – from adaptive cruise control to adaptive lane assist – he’s a lot less stressed on longer journeys. And luxury touches like Apple CarPlay and a large touchscreen make you look forward to shorter, spontaneous trips too.

So does all that play after work make him a Weekend Warrior then? Maybe, but for Kofi perhaps that’s just another label we can all live without.