Freestyle cycling takes off in Kabul

Danger in Kabul's first freestyle cycling club is not just from wheelies and tricks.

KABUL (REUTERS) - Zahra Ronna rides up a rickety bike ramp in Kabul.

The 18-year-old is one of 50 members in the city's first freestyle cycling club "Drop and Ride".

Established only two months ago to help keep young Afghans off the street, Zahra says it offers a much needed solace from their war torn environment.

"We're tired of war," she said. "We want to practice new things in our lives like this sport."

Freestyle cycling, which is dangerous by nature, is particularly difficult here.

Threats from insurgents and suicide bombings remain a concern.

Founder Asghar Mehrzada, who is also a social activist when he's not on his bike, says safety is their number one concern.

"The biggest challenge is security," he says. We're not confident about our safety when we practice, whether it's inside or outside the city.

The club costs members about six dollars a month, but Mr Mehrzada says he hopes international aid groups will help fund an expansion.