When I wrote the original mountain bike skills programs I deliberately designed them to allow a rider to progress from never having ridden off-road before all the way up to allowing an intermediate rider to take on some of the more advanced features around the Nerang Mountain Bike Park. Since the beginning of my mountain bike coaching a number of the programs have been updated, mostly through the addition of more skills into each program (they got harder). The Intro to Mountain Bike Riding Skills Course however has been kept at a level to cater for newbies to get onto the trails for the first time so it's really been the only program that hasn't evolved too much.
The other thing that's happened since I've started coaching has been the engagement of the Gold Coast City Council through its Active and Healthy Program. In addition to facilitating a Junior Skills session to get kids out riding the trails, they also sponsor the Come and Try Mountain Biking program, allowing riders of all ages to check out riding the Nerang trails in a safe environment while introducing them to basic riding skills to minimise the chances of something untoward happening - such as riding into a tree that might have jumped out onto the middle of a trail.
The Come and Try Mountain Bike Riding course was very specifically developed for people that had no experience riding off road, let alone out on the trails. It's been fairly successful at getting new riders into the sport we love, but it's also meant that the Intro to Mountain Bike Riding Skills Course has become a bit of an orphan program - a little bit unloved and unsure of its place in the world.
So I thought it was time for a bit of a change to set things right and give the Intro program a bit of an overhaul. While the Come and Try program focuses on bringing newbies and the Core and Flow Skills programs have a very specific aim to improve people's riding abilities through a focus on skills application, there is still a gap in the Balance programs to help riders progress to from basic green trails to entry level blue trails without committing to the more complex skills programs.
With that in mind updated the Intro to Mountain Bike Riding Skills program to help riders with a little bit of riding experience begin to explore the possibilities of what they can achieve mountain bike riding. By removing the need to cater for novice riders that haven't been on the trails yet, I've been able to adapt the program to introduce a few of the skills that will help students of the course to comfortably make the transition from green to blue trails. The program now also includes a bit more time on the trails to help riders with the inclusion of a familiarisation to the full Happy Valley Loop in addition to the Goanna Trail Ride.
So if you happen to be someone who's been enjoying the easy green trails but wanted to progress onto something a bit more challenging without necessarily committing to a comprehensive skills program the new Intro to Mountain Bike Riding Skills program could be exactly what you're after. For more details on the program download the new curriculum or join the next program by clicking here.