Tess’ 100th Ride

The other day, Tess Gordon reached 100 rides at JoyRide. You go, girl!

If you wonder why that’s “06880”-worthy — or think this must be a slow news day — read on.

Tess is not your average 14-year-old Westporter. A complex multitude of visual processing, and speech and language, issues make participation in regular teen sports difficult.

But Tess learned at an early age that exercise helps her process information better. She set out to find sports she could do.

JoyRide logoJoyRide owners Debbie Katz, Amy Hochhauser and Rhodie Lorenz — family friends of the Gordons — encouraged her to try the Teen Class level. She soon developed an appetite for spinning, and wanted more.

JoyRide let her take adult classes, as long as she “acted like an adult.” (JoyRide now allows all teens to take adult classes, with the same provision.)

At first it was tough. Tess sometimes shouts out during classes. A few adults found that distracting. She also needs lots of water, and got off her bike in the middle of class to refill her bottle.

Tess’ mom, Sheri, worked with JoyRide on solutions. How simple: Tess was moved to the side of the room, and she brought in 2 water bottles.

Today, Tess is a rock star. The adults in her classes love her. She’s so famous at JoyRide that recent visitors from Texas thought she was an instructor.

It’s been quite a ride. And — thanks to JoyRide, her mom and Tess herself — there will be many more ahead.

Tess Gordon and Jamie - JoyRide

Tess Gordon (left) and JoyRide instructor Jamie Falco.

6 responses to “Tess’ 100th Ride

  1. T. Mitchell

    Awesome Tess, keep going !
    I found it amusing though that Joyride demanded that she “act like an adult”
    in order to participate in the adult classes. I hope their policy requires the same of the “adults” in the class.

  2. Tina Piccolino

    It’s always such a pleasure to ride near Tess. Her shouts are nothing more than acts of enthusiasm which I actually find motivating. Congratulations, Tess, on your 100th ride!! I’m just sorry that I missed it.

  3. Izzy Betances

    Tess is an amazing rider. I know her through working the desk at JR Westport but also through riding with her on the occasional Saturday. Her positive energy is infectious. So glad to share a spot on the Wall of Joy with her! Here’s to hundreds more.

  4. Jess Grutkowski

    I absolutely LOVE being in class with Tess! She always rocks it and gives her all. In class, you tend to feed off your neighbor’s energy so sitting next to Tess is always a good thing as she makes you want to keep going. Hopefully one day she will get certified and become an instructor herself. Kudos as usual to Joyride for providing an encouraging and Joyful environment.

  5. Jaki Suter

    Tess has grown up so much since her first classes at JoyRide. And I always LOVE having her there! Congratulations, kiddo — you’re doing great things!

  6. Elina Lublinsky

    This inspired me to dust off my spinning shoes of and get back on that bike… Go Tessa!