Who are we?
Founded in 1976, the PPA is a Public Benefit Organisation committed to promoting cycling and the interests of cyclists. Recreational cycling (on- and off-road), development through cycling, safe cycling and advocacy are among the PPA’s priorities.
The Pedal Power Association is the largest recreational cycling organisation in South Africa. It has some 16 000 paid-up members; the largest component being in the Western Cape where the Association has its headquarters.
The Association came into being as a result of the running of the first Cycle Tour that was to develop into the now-world famous annual Cape Town Cycle Tour (previously called the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour).
The main purpose and object of the Association is to promote cycling and the interests of cyclists, with the following ancillary objectives:
(a) to be a representative body for the furtherance of the interests of cyclists;
(b) to promote cycling as a recreational activity, a sport and as a means of transportation;
(c) to improve conditions for cyclists with particular regard to their safety;
(d) to arrange and organise cycle tours, fun rides and outings;
(e) to co-ordinate cycle tours, fun rides and outings organised by other bodies and to assist them in their efforts;
(f) to establish contact and liaise with and where appropriate affiliate with other organisations having similar or alike interests and objectives.
Click here to read the full PPA Constitution.
An elected committee of 12 volunteers, who generally meet once per month, provides strategic direction to the Association. The PPA Office is staffed by fourteen employees who administer the day-to-day running of the Association and its members and provide guidance to event organisers on the extensive PPA funride calendar. These events are split roughly half-half between mass participation road and Mountain Bike funrides, with a few recreational tours, social rides, safe cycling activation rides and some races for the more competitive cyclist.
While the events on the PPA calendar are overseen by PPA office staff, most of the events are organised by various service organisations and clubs as fundraisers for a charitable or cycling-related cause. Amongst others, the Association provides the organizers with guidance in the form of a reference manual and hands-on assistance before and at the event. The Association subsidises the cost of the event by amongst others paying for PPA members to be timed, provides all equipment needed to mark the route, and much more. The Association also owns and organises a number of events itself, including the PPA One Tonner, Tour de PPA, two women’s-specific events, the PPA’s Elgin Valley MTB funride, and some social rides.
To promote safety at the funrides, the Association not only provides a qualified Safety Officer to attend each event, but also seeds its members based on their riding ability (using previous event results) and governs the manner in which the funrides are started in order to ensure the safety of the competitors. Cyclists of comparative ability are thus put into seeded start groups which are kept to manageable numbers based on the road or route conditions of a specific event.
Committee and staff members are involved with sub-committees that deal with the various aspects of the work of the Association. These portfolios include Finance, Commuting, Safe Cycling, Women’s cycling, Discipline, Cycling Development, Mountain biking and Funding.
The PPA expends considerable effort in the field of development of the sport in the poorer, previously disadvantaged areas and supports several clubs and cycling projects in this regard (read more under Project funding).
The Association’s income stems from membership fees and from a share in the profit of the Cape Town Cycle Tour. While income from membership fees are used to run the Association, the income received from the Cycle Tour is used to fund the various projects and cycling initiatives.
The Association’s headquarters are found in property in Kenilworth owned by the Association in Cape Town. Additionally, a satellite service is provided at each of the weekend events where staff is on hand to deal with membership and related queries. In 2015, the Association also opened a satellite office in Bloemfontein.
READ MORE ABOUT THE PPA’S HISTORY: CLICK HERE