Internationally recognised mechanic certification becomes a reality for the PBMA

The Professional Bicycle Mechanics Association has made good on a long-held ambition to introduce its own internationally-recognised certification, introducing a new online certification program for its members.

An email to mechanic and shop members of the Association was sent out last Wednesday with details of the process and links to the online exam, as well as detail of the introduction of physical assessments, which are touted for a debut at the 2018 Interbike show in Reno.

James Stanfill, President of the PBMA said: “We built certification with feedback gathered from multiple sources within the cycling industry – from educational institutions like United Bicycle Institute to companies like SRAM to shop service managers and everyday mechanics. This initial push into an internationally recognised standard is just the beginning.”

The PBMA Board of Directors features numerous individuals with experience in many facets of the cycling industry, including Jenny Kallista from Appalachian Bicycle Institute who was one of the key team members providing ideas and thoughts on how to test individuals.

The process for Members requires completion of a 50-question online exam. Stanfill noted that while this may seem simple, when you look at the data the PBMA collects about its Members current and past work and training, pairing that data with a successful exam allows a pathway to grandfather-in Members to be certified. The online-only pathway for PBMA Members is only open until June.

Beginning in June 2018, anyone wishing to be certified will start with the online exam (free for PBMA Members) and then be required to schedule an in-person, more hands-on test. The first tests will take place at Interbike 2018 in Reno, NV. The PBMA expects to announce a full schedule of available testing sessions later this year.

“Mechanics are a vital part of a bike shop’s DNA, and we’re thrilled to host the first in-person certification courses at Interbike 2018,” said Pat Hus, Vice President of Interbike. “Between the multitude of tech seminars, educational sessions, the Mechanics Challenge and more, we look forward to hosting the folks who keep cyclists of all levels on the road or in the dirt.”

Education centers supporting the PMBA’s Certification initiative include United Bicycle Institute, TechnoCycle, Appalachian Bicycle Institute, Winterborne Bicycle Institute and Velotech Cycling Limited in the UK. The Association is also working closely with Project Bike Tech to graduate their high school students into the basic level of certification.

For more information about the certification head over to

To find out more about the Professional Bicycle Mechanics Association, which was formed to represent and enhance the working life of industry mechanics, catch our earlier interview with Stanfill here.

The PBMA produces a weekly Mechanic Monday series, as featured on CI.N, telling the stories of notable mechanics in the bike business.