Bike Education Has Successful 2007by , LBC VP Education
What a year it was for bicycle education in Louisville. In an effort to attract more new cyclists to the summer New Rider Classes and support the city’s efforts to become a League of American Bicyclists Silver Level “Bike Friendly Community”, the Education Committee modified our activities for 2007.
In March, we offered the LAB Road 1 class in cooperation with Barry Zalph and Bicycling for Louisville. We offered two classes and participation was good at both, with over thirty people completing it. These classes gave our new League Cycling Instructors (LCI) a chance to use their skills, and encouraged two participants to take the LCI course later in the year. Special thanks to Barry for organizing the Road 1 course and to all the LCI’s who offered assistance.
Our summer classes once again experienced the biggest changes. In an effort to reach more new cyclists from around Louisville, we again offered two eight-week sessions instead of the traditional summer long sixteen week course. These sessions were offered in two different downtown Louisville locations – the TARC Building on West Broadway and the Waterfront Park yellow parking lot. The first session ran during May and June at TARC and the second session from July to August at the Waterfront Park. Both sessions were very successful, with well over 200 cyclists attending. The Waterfront Park location was the most popular venue, averaging around 60 cyclists each week. This was one of the largest average groups we have had. Lessons learned from the larger than normal 2006 participation prepared us in how to handle this large turnout. We were able to effectively teach the larger group and the training rides went off without any problems. Many of the Bike Ed volunteers have been helping with these classes for many years. Their knowledge and commitment allowed us to break up into smaller groups on the rides, with two or three instructors per group of ten to twelve new cyclists. This allowed some more one-on-one training and less of the pack mentality that seemed to aggravate downtown drivers in the past.
In an effort to recognize those who participated in the new rider classes, Certificates of Completion were given out to those who attended at least six of the eight weekly sessions. Over fifty Certificates of Completion were planned to be awarded as part of the Mayor’s Ride festivities on Labor Day. Unfortunately, a scheduling glitch prevented us from recognizing these people at the ride. Certificates will be sent to the participants. Many new riders had set a goal of receiving a certificate and committed themselves to attending the classes and becoming better riders. Additionally, we used some of the grant money received from the City of Louisville to award four participants new bicycles. In order to be eligible for a new bike, participants again had to attend at least six of the eight classes. Many made a special effort to qualify, and those who won bikes really appreciated them. I would like to welcome all those who participated in the Monday night New Rider classes to the club. Many have joined the club, become regular riders, and volunteered for OKHT. Special thanks to all the volunteers who committed themselves to teaching sessions, mentoring new riders and being ride captains for the training rides. Their commitment makes this program successful.
In October, the League of American Bicyclists held a League Cycling Instructor (LCI) certification course in Louisville. This course was put together by Bicycling for Louisville and taught by a certified trainer from the League of American Bicyclists (LAB). The LCI course is an intensive three day course designed to train bicycle educators to be effective cyclists and teachers. Three club members successfully completed the course and have been added to the nationwide registry of LAB instructors. Congratulations to Tom Armstrong, Steve Sexton and Dave Wittry for successfully completing the course. We now have ten League Cycling Instructors as members of the Louisville Bicycle Club. These ten instructors are available to teach bike education and are already actively doing so in the community.
I would like to take an opportunity to again thank all those who made bike education a success in 2007 and to congratulate those who completed the New Rider, Road 1 and LCI courses. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Mohammad Nouri for his untiring support of bicycling in Louisville. Mohammad has left the Metro government for the private sector. His support and enthusiasm toward cycling will be missed. I would also like to thank the city of Louisville and the Bicycle Task Force for their work in maintaining Louisville as a Bronze recipient of the League of American Bicyclists “Bike Friendly Community” designation and their continuing efforts in working toward the silver designation. Special thanks to the Louisville Metro government for their support of the Louisville Bicycle Club’s Bike Education program. Working together will result in better, safer bicycling for all bicyclists in and around Louisville.
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web posted: 17 Jan 2009
last updated: 17 Jan 2009