Above is a shot of my high school team back in the day…
I just returned from the first annual NICA Awards ceremony; a selection of who’s-who in the cycling industry attended in addition to many coaches and athletes who were being recognized for their brilliant efforts. The cycling industry knows that the future of their sport lies in the youth, and thus they are investing accordingly.
What amazes me is that mountain biking is becoming the first true outdoor sport that is being incorporated into high school sports.
I was always the last one picked for the basketball team when we played in elementary and high school during PE (since I was quite horrible at ball sports). But when I found the mountain bike, it really opened my eyes to the world and showed me that there was an athletic outlet that I loved.
It inspires me that many youth will now begin to formally have this opportunity and the support infrastructure to become involved in the sport.
My dream is that mountain biking provides a gateway and role-model activity to allow other outdoor sports to enter high school athletics.
Traditional/Ball sports are not for everyone. Someday there will be a rock climbing, backpacking, mountain biking, kayaking and more teams at high schools across the country and maybe even the world. How cool would that be?