Sanders: High School mountain bike team in Grand | SkyHiNews.com

Sanders: High School mountain bike team in Grand

Keith Sanders
Mountain Biking with Keith

It looks like we are going to have a high school mountain bike team! This has been a long time in coming and long overdue. What does this mean? It means that our kids can have the opportunity to race mountain bikes under a structured program based upon the guidelines of the Colorado High School Mountain Bike League (the official high school mountain bike league in Colorado and member of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association). This team will be open to anyone interested in racing mountain bikes .You do not need to have the latest and greatest equipment or have a huge background in mountain biking. The desire to participate is what is needed.

Recently a group of parents and interested parties met at the Headwaters Trails Alliance offices to get this going. Currently just about every mountain community has a high school mountain bike team. I think this will offer a great experience for the kids here. Mountain biking is a great sport not only to compete in but one that will last a life time. My experiences from racing have allowed me to make lifelong friends with people I would have otherwise never met, push myself both mentally and physically in ways I didn't know I could and gives me an activity that I can do virtually anywhere.

Colorado High School Mountain Bike League

The team will eventually become part of the Colorado High School Mountain Bike League. This league is the official mountain bike high school league in Colorado and has up to 800 participants in each of its races. That is a huge number of participants for any high school level sport. One thing that amazes me is the enthusiasm at each of the events. Kids of all abilities are participating, from those who just started mountain biking to those with Olympic dreams and everyone in between. The vibe is one that reminds me of the camaraderie that I see from our kids here, cheering everyone on regardless of ability.

The league supports 5 core principles into their programs.

1. Inclusive: all students are encouraged to participate. No one is benched.

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2. Equal: All students athletes are treated equally.

3. Strong body: Improving fitness and wellness are the center of training and education.

4. Strong mind: Student athletes are students first.

5. Strong Character: Programs encourage riders to be leaders, work hard, respect others and give back.

More information

How do you find out more information? There is a meeting from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, June 1 at the Middle Park High School Library. This will be an informational meeting for anyone wishing to join as a participant as well as anyone who wants to help contribute and make this a success. I encourage you to come to the meeting and see what this is all about. There are a lot of activities available for our kids, this is one of the few that transcends to an activity that the entire family can enjoy. If you can't make the meeting then email mpmtbteam@gmail.com for more information.

I hope to see you there! Enjoy your rides! Life's too short not to have fun!

Looking for more information or want to get involved as a mountain biker? Like Grand Mountain Bike Alliance (GMBA) on Facebook. GMBA is your local mountain bike group. Check out Mountainbikecapitalusa.com. Great site by the Winter Park Chamber! Keith Sanders is the President of the Grand Mountain Bike Alliance, 3x US National Mountain Bike Champion and owner of Beavers Sports Shop. You can reach me at keith@winterparkskirental.com.

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