Jules Fincham explains why the Go MTB Orientation Course will add a valuable string to your bow

 

What is Go MTB?  Go MTB, is a proficiency scheme for mountain bikers. Learners’ achievements are recorded and signed off as they progress. At key stages, learners are awarded certificates marking their achievements.

 

What is it for? Go MTB was created by Cycling Scotland to give mountain bike leaders and coaches a structure for running mountain bike sessions in schools, clubs or youth groups. The scheme motivates and encourages learners of any age to keep progressing their mountain bike skills and knowledge as recording achievements lets the learner see how they are progressing and motivates them to achieve more.

 

How does it work? Each participant receives a passport-style logbook, in which all progress is recorded and signed off by a Go MTB instructor. This allows learners, as well as parents and teachers, to chart their progress as they acquire new skills and knowledge.

 

What sort of things will participants learn? The Go MTB scheme isn’t just about learning bike skills. The aim is to enable riders to independently enjoy mountain biking and the outdoors in a safe and responsible way. Go MTB has four themes. These are:

  • Riding Skills
  • Sharing the outdoors
  • First aid
  • Being independent and self-supporting

 

While the award is 75% skills based, the other themes are integral to mountain biking, dealing with behaviour, etiquette and safety such as trail use, consideration to other riders, care for the environment and basic first aid.

 

Why is this different from just teaching skills? Of course learning a skill or gaining knowledge is an end in itself but we also know that having goals and rewards, the more specific the better, is hugely important to progressing in anything. Go MTB gives learners and instructors a structured, yet infinitely flexible, goal-driven programme of learning. As each achievement is documented the learner can see how far they have come at any time and also what they might want to achieve next. This helps keep learners engaged and focused.

 

How can I become a Go MTB provider? If you have a mountain bike leader award from one of the national governing bodies (BC, MBLA, CTC, MIAS) you can enroll on a one-day Go MTB Orientation course. Once you complete the orientation, you will be qualified to offer Go MTB mountain bike awards as part of your teaching programme.

 

I’ve heard there are different levels of Go MTB instructor. You can be assessed as a Go MTB Mountain Bike instructor at one of two levels – either Go MTB level 3 or Go MTB level 5. The level you get assessed for is dependent upon your personal mountain bike skills and the level of your existing mountain bike leadership award. Level 3 takes you up to teaching skills such as manuals, small drop offs and moderately technical descents while level 5 covers more advanced techniques. Your level will be determined during the orientation day. You can ‘up’ your level in the future if you ‘up’ your mtb leader qualification. You would not need to return for another orientation day.

 

The Go MTB instructor manual that you receive on your course explains the mountain bike skills that are delivered at each of the 5 levels of the Go MTB award, and gives key coaching points on how to deliver them.

 

Cycle Wild Scotland is delivering regular one-day Go MTB Orientation courses to mtb leaders. We can also run a bespoke course for your group or club. For more information contact jules@cyclewildscotland.co.uk

Go MTB is devised and administered by Cycling Scotland and is endorsed by British Cycling and other mtb governing bodies (CTC, MIAS & MBLA).

The dates for our next Go MTB Orientation courses are 25 July & 30 September.  The fee for the day is £130.