Cycleactive to run youth mountain bike skills course

Two day course will introduce trail skills to 11-16 year olds

Mountain biking holiday company CycleActive are running a new course aimed at giving young mountain bikers advice, coaching, encouragement and trail riding experience.

The course will run over a weekend (19-20 August) from their training centre at Brougham Hall, Penrith, Cumbria and is designed for 11-16-year-old riders of novice to intermediate ability. CycleActive have 10 years of coaching expertise and three of their instructors will be on hand to make sure each child gets the coaching they need.

The weekend costs £90 per participant, plus £10 for an optional family ride on 21 August. To book your place, contact call 01768 840400 or email chris@cycleactive.co.uk

The full programme of the weekend is as follows:

Friday 19 August

11am: arrival and welcome drinks, chat, bike checks.

11:30am: welcome talk, followed by bike setup session, looking at all elements of bike fit, pressures and contact points.

Lunch: bring your own or buy from the café on site.

The afternoon will be spent working on a range of core skills, using the skills arena at Brougham Hall and will cover the following:

  • Body positioning, cone of movement, balance and proprioception
  • Footwork for braking, descending and bike control
  • Vision training for speed, singletrack and corners
  • Pump manuals, rebound manuals, wheelies and step-ups

The coaching day will end with a review of video clips from the skills sessions, finishing at 5pm for a barbeque (note that parents need to either collect participants at 5pm, or join us for the barbeque). The evening is a chance for parents and young riders to get to know the other people on the course, share their experiences, and chat informally to the team about biking.

Saturday 20 August

A 9.30am start at Brougham Hall will begin with bike checks, pre-ride safety checks and then a ride into the hills for a full day of on-trail coaching.

The day will be a mixture of short ride sections and coaching segments, with the aim of covering 8-12km in total with a focus on a whole range of trail skills.  The groups will be allocated to instructors based on their progress on the first day, with no more than eight riders per coach.

The sessions will be flexible and will depend on the riders’ needs and interests.  Skills will include:

  • Climbing (technical and non-technical terrain
  • Descending on different trail types
  • Choosing good lines
  • Balance and control at high and low speed
  • Pump for speed, grip and style
  •  Energy management
  • Cornering at low and high speed
  • Steep roll-offs
  • Building confidence and mental control

The coaching rides end back at Brougham Hall at 3.30pm to allow for bike cleaning and preparation, followed by a detailed review of video footage from the day.

Sunday 21 August

The family ride starts at 10am, so riders and their families will need to be at the designated meeting point by 9.30am. The ride will be as one group and cover around 25km. Staff will act as guides and technical experts but for the ride they do expect parents to be fully responsible for their children. They cannot take young people (under 18) unless they are accompanied by a responsible adult or guardian. The ride should finish by 4pm at the latest.

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