Last week, Cycling Canada laid out plans for a national introductory cycling program that will help school-aged kids develop basic cycling skills and safety awareness. Cycling Canada says that the program, branded as HopOn/Embarquez, will play a leading role in getting more Canadians on bikes in a safe and inclusive way.
On Mar. 1, helmet company Lazer announced that it will be teaming up with HopOn to help get more school-aged kids on bikes.
Lazer and HopOn
In order to support safe cycling for youth in Canada Lazer has committed to donating at least 200 helmets for HopOn activities. For a three-month period Lazer is hosting a platform to register (Lazer) helmet purchases. By registering helmets, Lazer owners extend their warranty from 12 to 24 months. For every 10 registrations, Lazer will donate a helmet to HopOn. The company plans to donate at least 200 helmets but has not put a cap on the maximum number of donated helmets.
HopOn is modelled around Cycling BC’s existing iRide program. HopOn will teach introductory cycling at the community level, as well as through in-school programming.
The program will be initially launched in B.C., Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Yukon this year, and aims to expand to other provinces and territories in the years to come. It will operate as a standalone program in some provinces and unify existing youth cycling programs in others. Due to current COVID restrictions, Cycling Canada has yet to confirm HopOn schedules.
“Community is at the centre of Cycling Canada’s strategic plan and the introduction of a national grassroots program is a foundational initiative to increase inclusion, accessibility and safety while helping to build club capacity and help find future champions,” says Mathieu Boucher, chief of development at Cycling Canada. “In collaboration with our provincial cycling associations, we believe that within the next ten years we will teach basic cycling skills to over 300,000 kids across the country.”
Ultimately, Cycling Canada hopes to drive the flow of new participants and members from HopOn into cycling club programs across the country.
The HopOn Ride with Woodsy
At 10:00 a.m. EST/7:00 a.m. PST on Mar. 21 Canadian pro cyclist Mike Woods will host a virtual Zwift ride to raise funds for the HopOn program.
The “HopOn Ride with Woodsy presented by Lexus” will be open to all riders—Lexus Canada will donate $1 for every participant attending the virtual event. All riders will get a chance to see their avatar ride in the virtual Cycling Canada national team kit as they pedal through the 25km Watopia’s Waistband route.
HopOn is also accepting cash donations, and offering prizes that include a signed Mike Woods jersey.