What you can do NOW Over the next few months I’ll be sharing steps, tips, and ideas as we prepare for our inaugural season. I’m super excited that yo

         
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What you can do NOW

Over the next few months I’ll be sharing steps, tips, and ideas as we prepare for our inaugural season. I’m super excited that you are all interested in coaching, and want you to know that I am here to support you on everything coaching and team development related. You, the coaches, will be the most important factor in ensuring our student riders have a successful season.

It is not necessary to have any prior coaching experience in order to be a successful coach, just have a passion for cycling and a positive attitude and we will provide the tools and resources to help you hone your coaching skills. As a coach your first priority will be the safety and overall well-being of your student-athletes. You will be a teacher and a role model for your student athletes, and that is why it is crucial that you are open to learning the best practices of youth mountain bike coaching and actively work to hone your leadership skills throughout your journey.

I know it might seem like the season is a long ways off, but it will be here before we know it. My hope is that through monthly newsletters I can provide you with enough information and direction to help you feel confident and ready to hit the ground running when we meet for our Leaders Summit in August. The Leaders Summit will be a vital part of preparing for your season as you will learn important coaching skills you will use both on and off the bike.

In the coming months I will delve into such topics as: recruitment/forming a team, team budget/sponsorship, and the benefits of coaching. But what I would like to start with is an overview of the steps to getting certified and highlight those steps that can be completed now. For more in depth information please visit: http://www.nationalmtb.org/coaches-license-program/

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There are a few items (highligthed) on the above grid (which can be found here: http://www.nationalmtb.org/coaches-license-program/) that can be completed now on your own.

Background Check - costs $22 and took me just 12 minutes. Results will be sent directly to NICA, and you should get an email in just a couple days letting you know the results. Background checks only need to happen one time for NICA (unless you switch the team you are coaching).
First Aid, CPR, Wilderness First Aid - These certifications can be completed through any agency. The league may set up a Wilderness First Aid training at some point in the future. But you can independently look to agencies such as the Red Cross to find available trainings in your area.
Concussion Certificate - Free online course. Just make sure you set aside enough time to run through it - there is no option for saving your progress to allow you to return to the course once you start the program.

The remaining items in the grid will be addressed starting with the Leaders Summit, and on into the season. The Leaders Summit (if attending both days) will give you 9 units of Professional Development, including Risk Management and MTB 101 - requirements for the Head Coach certification. Your annual waiver and fees can be submitted after we hold our Leaders Summit, and your field work hours will be completed once practice begins and you start working with your student athletes.

What's next?

Start getting the online components done now and save those confirmation emails, keep an eye out for our Leaders Summit coming in August, stay tuned for future Coaches Conversations and feel free to explore the league website http://www.northcarolinamtb.org/. In the meantime, share the word about our league and feel free to reach out with any questions - you can reach me at michael@northcarolinamtb.org.

PRO Tip

Pay attention to what jersey you wear to practice/on a ride with your students. These days craft beers and mountain biking culture seem to go hand in hand; and much like you would not enjoy a beer at the trailhead after a ride with your students, wearing a jersey promoting a beer company (either in whole or as a sponsor) might not be the best choice.

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