Shifting Gears for Individuals

The Shifting Gears program supports individuals to replace single-occupancy vehicle trips with walking, cycling, taking transit, carpooling, and telecommuting. A shift like this can unlock benefits to health & wellbeing, our community & environment, and your personal finances!

Here are some of the supports we offer:

Shifting Gears May Challenge

Each Spring, citizens from across the Peterborough Region come together for the month-long Shifting Gears May Challenge. This annual event encourages participants to rack up trips and prizes by walking, cycling, taking transit, carpooling, and telecommuting to work or school, or when running errands! It’s a great way to start your spring and jumpstart a new habit!

Shifting Gears May Challenge

Shifting Gears has been helping the Peterborough Community make shifts towards using more active and sustainable transportation since 2004! Below is your quick guide to understanding the May Challenge and the other initiatives put forward by the Shifting Gears Program.

What is Included?

    • Trip Tracking: participants are encouraged to track their sustainable trips online. You can follow overall community statistics via our email newsletter and also sign up for workplace leaderboards. Shifting Gears loves some friendly competition!
    • Prizes: tracking trips leads to prizes! Each week participants who tracked their trips are eligible for multiple prize draws. The more weeks you track, the more chances to win.
    • Resources & workshops: Shifting Gears runs exclusive workshops to support transportation shift, as well as, online resources for individuals and employers. Workshops run seasonally, but you can find resources available all- year round.

Frequently Asked Questions

What counts as a ‘trip’?

A trip is a movement from ‘a’ to ‘b’ that isn’t strictly for exercise. This can include travel to work, errands, appointments, school, sports practise, shopping and more!

Remember to record round trips as = 2 trips. If you are trip chaining (i.e., making multiple stops), you can count each trip separately. For example: Work to the grocery store to the day care to home, can count as three trips!

 What about working-from-home?

Working from home counts as 2 trips saved! Record the number of kilometers you would be driving, if you were going into the office.

What does it mean to sign up as a community member, student, employer/employee?

We like to understand the communities of people Shifting Gears participants are coming from, so we ask this question to find out! Students, community members and workplaces, all might need different types of resources and supports to help make shifts to active and sustainable transportation modes.

How do I know if I should enter as an employer/employee or a Community Member?

This is a great question, and it all depends on what you would like out of the May Challenge. Below is a breakdown of the benefits of each option:

Community Member

This is for people who would like to participate in the Challenge as an individual. You might be a retiree, a stay-at-home parent, or an employee for a company that doesn’t have a Shifting Gears workplace team. You will still have access to community stats, prizes and workshops, so you won’t miss out on the fun!

Employer/Employee

This is for people who would like their workplace to compete in the May Challenge as a Workplace Team! Your workplace will be added to a registration list, where colleagues will be added to your team when they register as part of your workplace. Employees who track trips will be automatically tabulated as part of your workplace team, where you can win kudos for outstanding engagement and stellar stats!

You can also nominate a workplace champion, who can organize on behalf of the team, to add some extra support to your team.

What is a workplace champion?

This is someone who wants to help organize and promote the May Challenge within your workplace. They can be anyone (i.e., they don’t have to be an owner or manager) who might want to remind folks to track trips, offer support and motivation and liaise with the Shifting Gears Coordinator to unlock other perks! Want to learn more? Check out our page: Shifting Gears for Employers to view some additional details!

Why do you ask to track trips and kilometers?

Great question! Tracking your kilometers is optional, and many folks just submit their tracked number of trips. We ask people to submit the number of trips and kilometers, as it gives us another way to recognize people for their commitment to active and sustainable travel. More kilometers travelled= more greenhouse gas emissions reduced in our community!

What are some ways people keep track of their trips and kilometers over the week?

Great question! Some folks have personal devices that track their movements (like a smart watch, fitbit or even a smart-phone with enabled location tracking). Other people will use an online trip planning tool (like google maps) to map out their regular weekly routes with distances. Some folks use pen and paper to record trips in day-planners or notebooks or our handy trip tracking PDF! Workplaces often set up tally boards, in their employee break rooms, with trip tallies for their staff to fill in throughout the week. If you need support trip tracking, please reach out to us directly and we would be glad to help!

Registration for the May Challenge begins April 18th, 2023!

Rack ‘n’ Roll Workshops: for New or Aspiring Bike Commuters

The Shifting Gears program provides aspiring or new cyclists with the equipment and information they need to make more practical essential trips by bike. Rack ‘n’ Roll workshops assess the commuter readiness of your bike, provide a free rear rack and pannier (i.e. a bike bag) and help you install the equipment.

Whether commuting to work, or running errands by bike, sign up for the 2023 program by clicking here and indicating your interest in the Rack ‘n’ Roll Program. You will receive a message in your inbox with more information and how to book your appointment.

During a scheduled appointment with B!KE: The Peterborough Community Bike Shop, participants will work with a mechanic educator to:

    • Install the new equipment
    • Identify and address mechanical or other issues on the bike
    • Work through questions the participant may have about riding
    • Identify changes to ensure a safer, more comfortable, and more enjoyable ride
    • Capture a photo and quote about the experience

This program is offered each the spring. Enrolment is limited, so sign up for the program today!

ABC’s of Bike Maintenance Workshops

Learning the foundations of bike mechanics is as easy as A, B, C!

In this popular workshop; our partners at B!KE will go over the basics of bike maintenance, by walking you through the air, brake and chain components of your bicycle. This interesting and accessible workshop is suitable for a range of ages and bike maintenance understandings. Currently offered during our May Challenge, sign up today to join the fun!

E-Work Guides and Resources

There are many factors that contribute to whether you are productive, comfortable, and content working from home. These include your workstyle, your home environment and workstation set-up, and the support your employer provides through supportive policies, communication, and supervision.

We’ve put together some material to help you get the most from your remote work experience.