Accessible Cycling International Exchange between the United States and Taiwan: Propelling Handcycle 2.0 onto the Global Stage

The "2024 California Irvine Accessible Cycling International Visit - Sustainable Technology" exchange event, hosted by the Taipei Life Vitality Association for Persons with Disabilities on May 9th, invited teams from the Irvine City Government in California, the Cycling & Health Tech Industry R&D Center (CHC) team, and hundreds of disabled friends to participate. Together, they experienced international exchange in accessible cycling, explored accessible bicycles and the upgraded version of Handcycle 2.0, and promoted a more diverse, safe, and healthy sports and leisure vehicle experience.


Chairman Ms. Song (Li-Rong) of the Taipei Life Vitality Association for Persons with Disabilities stated that the visit of Mayor Farrah Han and the municipal team of Irvine, California to Taiwan not only included visits to Taoyuan City, our sister city since 2001 but also highlighted the collaboration between the Life Enrichment team and the Bicycle Club of Irvine (BCI). In 2024, from February 22nd to March 5th, the Life Enrichment team led 16 wheelchair warriors on a 13-day accessible cycling international exchange in California. They established a sisterhood with BCI and were personally received by Mayor Farrah Han of Irvine. Hoped that Mayor Han will soon visit Taiwan to meet the Taipei Life Vitality Association and visit the activity base. Through the traction of Handcycle 2.0, this initiative aims to enhance international exchange in hand-cycling between the United States and Taiwan, as well as to establish the brand image of Taiwan's bicycles. The seeds planted in Taiwan are poised to bloom worldwide in the near future.


During his speech, Mr. Wu (Yong-sheng), the General Manager of the Cycling & Health Tech Industry R&D Center, stated that the center, with support from the Department of Industrial Technology, MOEA  in 2010, developed the first generation of Handcycle. They also organized Taiwan's first-ever Handcycle round-island event, which greatly benefited many disabled communities and successfully promoted the Handcycle culture domestically. After more than a decade of user feedback and technological advancements, with proactive support from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the advanced industry, "Handcycle 2.0" was born. It incorporates a human-centric design, featuring a low step-over frame design and adjustable seats in terms of both height and position. Additionally, it is equipped with dual rear extractable batteries to extend battery life and alleviate range anxiety. Furthermore, considering the difficulty in observing rear-approaching vehicles while riding, Handcycle 2.0 is equipped with rear-approaching vehicle sensing radar, allowing riders to grasp the movement of approaching vehicles without turning their heads, thus enhancing riding safety.


The development of Handcycle 2.0 represents innovation and the fulfillment of social responsibility. Through the joint efforts of the Department of Industrial Technology, MOEA (DOIT), the CHC, and the Handcycle Teams, utilizing specialized scientific and technological expertise, comprehensive optimization and upgrades of the Handcycle have been carried out. This effort has led to the proliferation of hand-powered bicycle sports, encouraging diverse communities to venture outdoors and experience the joy of riding together. In the future, these will not only be sold in Taiwan but also be promoted for export to international markets, making Handcycle a "National Sport" and thereby enhancing Taiwan's bicycle industry's economic benefits and international competitiveness.