Project 529 Garage

What is it? The short answer is it's a bike registry system. But unlike other bike registries, you can buy a "shield" to attach to your bike, which helps deter bike theft (thieves will recognize that it's registered and hopefully leave it alone) and make it easy to get the community's help with getting it back to you if it does take a wander with someone else. This system has been proven to reduce bike thefts by up to 55% in some areas! Project 529 is truly global in nature: if your bike is registered in Calgary, stolen from Vancouver and recovered in Australia, it will still be traced to you. No other bike registry has this kind of reach. 

Also, because there is a fee for the shield as well as for upgraded accounts for law enforcement, municipalities and post-secondary institutions, there's some actual revenue generated, unlike the free registries which have difficulty maintaining their databases with no income. 

Every course participant will receive 1 (one) shield for free; additional shields for your other bikes, your friends' or family's bikes can be added-on or purchased separately. Registration with the 529 Garage is free, but you need to have a Shield in order to enter the community and truly benefit from the system.

More information on the 529 Garage, and access to the registry as well as app can be found here.

Safer Cycling Calgary is proud to be Calgary's first partner with the 529 Garage.

Not attending a course? Want additional Shields? Buy your shield(s) here! 

The form below is for purchase of 1 shield: if you want more than one, enter how many more in "additional shields." Your shield(s) will be mailed to the address you specify, along with instructions on how to complete registration. 

Individual Registration

Thank you for your purchase! Shield(s) will be mailed to you within 5 business days. 

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Instructor Certification Process

Thank you for your interest in pursuing Instructor Certification. This page will tell you more about the process so you can make an informed decision. 

Steps:
1. Take the Advanced course, including completing online learning with 80% or higher grade, completing on-bike evaluation with 80% or higher grade and completing written (multiple choice) test with 80% or higher grade.
2. Attend one of each course you'd like to teach, to view it from a teaching perspective rather than a student's (if possible). 
3. Take the Instructor training course, completing all required components for the desired level of certification.
4. Complete additional training & other requirements:  
    a. complete first aid certification
    b. complete police vulnerable sector check (if appropriate)
    c. complete NCCP Let's Ride: Community Cycling & Basic Cycling skills courses 
    d. complete associated practicum (see below)
5. Complete a written (long-answer) evaluation. 

Practicum requirements:
- Co-teach (teach with supervision) one or two courses at each level you'd like to teach. 

Depending on when you start, scheduling of the Instructors Training, and scheduling the required practicum courses, you may not be able to fully complete certification in one year. 

Employment opportunity:
Safer Cycling Calgary is actively searching for staff for the current/upcoming year and future years. If you are interested in working with SCC, you can be paid for the courses you attend during your training period. Once you are certified, you will be able to set your own schedule, teaching courses when you want and letting SCC handle all the registration process, marketing and recruiting assistants (if necessary). 

Safer Cycling Calgary has 2 streams of focus: 
1. Beginner courses, almost exclusively on weekends (adult and/or child). 
2. Intermediate courses, exclusively on weekdays - community-based afternoon courses, daycamps in the summer and eventually directly to schools in May & June. 


2021 wage expectations: $17/hr for assistant/training-level instructors, $20/hr (or percentage of registration fees) for Certified Instructors. 

When Others Talk About SCC

We've compiled a list of media, blog and video coverage of Safer Cycling Calgary. Please note that as of 2019, SCC has moved away from the CAN-BIKE program. Our curriculum is now better than before!

2016:

May 16, 2016: Calgary Herald article and video: Calgary woman builds a business teaching immigrants how to cycle
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f the video fails to load, try the direct link here

August 18, 2016: Calgary Herald (print only version): Walk, drive, bus or cycle... stay safe on the way to school

2018:

May 30, 2018: Get Kids Out Video Blog: Bike Safety with Ben and Ellie

September 19, 2018: Savvy Mom Blog: Here's where to go in Calgary to teach your kids to safely ride a bike

December 20, 2018: Avenue Calgary: 5 Tips for Bike Commuting in Calgary

2019:

July 16, 2019: Life With Boys Blog: Learning how to ride a bike! note: the author of this blog states that her youngest didn't succeed (he did by our criteria) and omitted the fact that she had her middle child there who was causing a disruption to all. I have posted a response but it had to go as multiple comments (posted by the author). 

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. 

Testimonials from previous Participants

Jump to section:

Child First Time
Adult First Time
Beginner
Kids Intermediate
Adult Intermediate
Advanced (Adult only)
Instructor Training

Would you like to submit a testimonial? Click here!


Child First Timechildren aged 4-13 who have never ridden a bicycle

 


Adult First Time: Adults (14+) who have never ridden a bicycle

 


Beginner: cyclists learn confidence and skills for riding on the pathway

 


Kids Intermediate: Young cyclists aged 9 to 14 learn to ride their bikes on residential roads

 


Adult Intermediate: Cyclists aged 14 and up learn to ride their bikes on residential roads.

 


Advanced: Cyclists 16 or older learn to ride their bikes on busier urban roads

 


Instructor Training: Advanced 'grads' learn how to teach courses on their own

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