With the explosion of cycling in France in recent years, more and more people are requesting an education to start or retrain in jobs related to cycling. Young people, workers and even pre-retirees are all concerned now.
One of the many recognized training centers in France is Sup de vélo, which has had two training centers since 2010, in Orléans and near Toulouse. They train between 300 and 350 people annually. But since the Covid-19 crisis, Matthias Costes, one of the directors, explains that the requests have never been stronger: “The Covid has been a very big drag on the national territory, but it has never made us work so hard. People stayed at home, took stock, personally and professionally, and suddenly we’ve never had so many requests.”†
The type of population is also changing, with an average age that used to be 25 to 35 years and now more between 35 and 55 years. This can be explained in particular by financing facilities: “These courses are fully financed from the training account and Pôle Emploi can also pay for them. We also have Transitions Pro, which, in consultation with your employer, can entitle you to training that is not necessarily related to your current job”†
Therefore, the examples of reconversion may surprise: “A GP came to train with us, exhausted from work. He has now opened his own bicycle shop. In Toulouse we also have many people from aviation, from Airbus, who came to train to retrain”†
In terms of training, these range from a single day, for individuals wishing to learn how to maintain their bicycle, to more than two months to learn the bike sales profession. In this case, it is a baccalaureate level title, recognized at the national level.
New recognized courses are being created
Currently, Sup de vélo offers seven training courses, but is preparing new courses: “There is currently no training in France to become a bicycle welder, for that you have to go abroad, especially to England. The idea is therefore to try to standardize the training to be able to build your own frames, which can then lead to working with big framers like Cyfac, Victoire or even LaFraise, small jewels of goldsmiths. We are also developing a bicycle salesman training course for young people from 16 years old.” The aim is, of course, to obtain more and more recognized and validated training courses.
After the Covid crisis, a new phenomenon is shaking up the training sector for the cycling professions. This is the explosion of the electrically assisted bicycle, with prospects of several million models sold in France in the coming years. So Sup de vélo and others will have to support this transition as the current stores are not necessarily ready in terms of expertise in UAE.
(ETX Daily Up)