Safer Cycling Calgary is a Calgary owned and operated business dedicated to delivering cycling courses to people of all ages. It is our belief that cycling is a critical life skill and just knowing how to get balanced and pedal isn’t the end of learning: there’s a lot more to learn and we have courses to teach you. At Safer Cycling Calgary, we value your safety when you’re riding your bike. It’s for this reason that we offer a number of different courses, depending on your age, level of ability, and cycling goals. Whether you want to learn to ride a bike for the first time, are an experienced bicycle commuter, or something in between, we have a course that will teach you something.

We are the only business in Alberta offering a full range of bicycling courses to the public.

Current course offerings: 

- First Time is a learn to ride course for those who haven't yet learned how to ride a bike. For children (age 4-13) or adults (14 and up).
- Beginner, the pathway course is for adults (14 and up) who can already ride but aren't confident enough to ride on the pathways yet.
- Novice is a short course for cyclists age 7 and up (including adults) to learn basic handling skills and be introduced to very quiet residential roads.
- Intermediate, the most valuable course we offer, will teach cyclists how to ride on residential roads. Because bike infrastructure will never go from every home to every destination, you will have to ride on the road at some point. For kids (age 9-15), adults (16 and up), or families. Summer day camps, too!
- Advanced, for adults (16 and up), is a progression from Intermediate, enabling cyclists to ride on busier roads including downtown.

Founded in 2011, the team at Safer Cycling Calgary have now taught over 380 people how to ride a bike and improved the skills of over 100 cyclists. We have seen first hand the power of the bicycle: this simple machine is terrifying, joyful, challenging, empowering, liberating and a ridiculous amount of fun. Learning how to ride a bike requires a willingness to override one’s fear of falling, and learn to use the body in ways unlike anything else. Once balance is mastered, then the cyclist must learn how to control the bicycle and rules for riding the bicycle. Finally comes the freedom to propel oneself along, literally feeling the wind in your face (and the rest of the weather) and using only your muscles to transport yourself on incredible journeys or routine travels.

The team at Safer Cycling Calgary has seen it all: tiny 4 year olds through octogenarians; tears of panic and tears of joy. Mostly we’ve seen the thrill of learning new skills and the joy a bicycle brings.

You don’t know what you don’t know but we can teach you what we know.


Meet the team

Melissa Malejko is the owner and a Certified Cycling Instructor. Certified since 2011, I am currently the only instructor with SCC offering the full range of courses.

I have taught over 300 people how to ride a bike in the last 8 years with the youngest being 4 and the oldest 84. In addition, I have taken over 100 people on the road through courses that I was involved in. I am pursuing upgraded status and am hoping to soon be able to offer the Instructor Training course. My city bike is a Norco Plateau (nearly the same as pictured but beige in colour) Melissa Old Bikeand I also have an older Norco Bigfoot for mountain biking. You'll be able to recognize me because I always wear a zebra helmet cover. 

On a more personal level, I am a born and raised Calgarian, mom to one wonderful daughter, passionate about active transportation, and a pet lover (currently have a cat with moderate-severe cerebellar hypoplasia, and fish). When I'm not teaching courses, you may find me volunteering at my daughter's school, fostering animals (mostly kittens and cats), gardening, camping, watching CFL football games, biking for fun (city or mountain), snowshoeing, downhill skiing or ice skating (depending on the season). 

My parents bought me a bike with training wheels for my 7th birthday - in January!! I did a lot of laps of the basement before it was nice enough to take it outside. I don't remember the process of taking off the training wheels, but it happened that year, because 2 days before my school picture in September, I fell off and cut my lip and skinned my leg pretty badly (there is photo evidence). It didn't stop me, and despite taking many other falls, I've been riding ever since.

Melissa FT

I believe in life-long learning and that there is always something new to learn. My personal goals include: learn how to do a wheelie (on my mountain bike), kick my fear of the balance beam at the Chestermere bike park, attempt/master weave poles on my bike.  I would also like to complete upgraded certification to be able to deliver instructor training. I have recently completed a MOOC on concussions and the NCCP Let's Ride & Basic Cycling Skills courses. Completing one of my goals, in January 2021, I became a Level 1 Certified Ski Instructor so now I can teach people how to ski in the winter. 

 

 

 

 

 

Sasha Petrashina is a Certified Instructor as of 2018. Sasha mudShe is an experienced cyclist and accomplished at teaching First Time courses (nearly 100 participants herself and an amazing 79% success rate). Sasha is fluent in Russian as well as English.

In Sasha's words: I've always loved biking! In the Russian village where I grew up there were two ways to get around: walking or biking. I always went for biking! When I joined Safer Cycling Calgary, first, I started as an assistant instructor and was teaching with Melissa. Then, after going through the Instructor Training course, I started to run the First Time courses at NE location.

I absolutely love teaching kids how to ride a bike! After a day of running around the rink I’m physically exhausted but emotionally I feel very cheerful and inspired by seeing kids, who had no clue how to get on their bikes three hours ago, riding them! Smiling and laughing!

Other than teaching kids how to ride a bike, I run an attic insulation business, work with autistic kids, write psychology articles and enjoy life, especially riding my bike for fun.

 


David P. is an Assistant Instructor who has completed his second year with SCC. Squeezing in teaching time while pursuing his post-secondary studies, David is dedicated and passionate about helping participants reach their goals. You'll generally find him wearing a goldfish helmet cover and volunteering to take participants on single track trails in Fish Creek Park where he may or may not test the depth of mud puddles with his shoes on. 

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