I have been riding just about anything with two wheels now for over 45 years--from BMX, to moto hare scrambles to mountain bikes. However, in 2011, despite many years of experience, I suffered a major mountain bike accident that damaged the vertebrae in my neck and blew out my knee. This opened my eyes to the need for improving control in my riding. I have since then invested myself in developing techniques to ride safely without sacrificing any of the joy of the sport. I believe that good riding should be accomplished with technique, confidence and skill--not just luck.
Having an earned doctorate, I have served as an instructor in both youth athletics and adult academics. I have applied my instruction skills to a sport that I am passionate about…mountain biking. I have been riding the classic mountain bike trails from the old growth forests in Oregon, to the deserts of Nevada and Arizona, to the ski lift trails in California, Utah, Colorado, and West Virginia, to the Adirondacks Mountains in New York, to the mountainous coffee plantations in Costa Rica, and the hundreds, no, thousands of miles between. I have studied with numerous instructors over the years and have applied their combined wisdom to my own riding and teaching. I am eager to share what I have had to learn the hard way.
Techniques are the same for cross country, trail, enduro, and downhill, but some are more difficult on a downhill bike, while others are more difficult on a cross country bike. At age 51, I was on an enduro bike for this rock roll, but a younger, more gifted rider may be able to ride it successfully on a cross country bike. However, if he or she could, then their body postion, braking, and terrain awareness would need to be almost identical to mine.
Having been on two wheels most of my life, I've learned a ton; but no matter how much we already know, we can always learn more and get better. That is why I strive to continue to take lessons in order to continue my riding and teaching progression.
"Drop the Hammer," in Bentonville: a road gap requiring a 17' trajectory from take-off to transition. Not making the transition would likely mean broken bones. I know that hardly any of my clients are interested in checking this feature off their list, and I will never hit it again; but just about all my clients want to learn how to execute smaller drops and step-downs safely.
"Drop the Hammer" pictured from the other side with one of my clients checking it out. We worked on basic jumping on the blue jump trail that day, and had an absolute blast.
The techniques I've learned in bike school apply both to cross country and downhill trails.