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Bringing the fun at event weekends

Everything you need to know to create a great event experience for your NICA team – this month at The Trailhead!

Photos by Aaron Puttcamp, Pennsylvania Interscholastic Cycling League

As our spring leagues start planning for their upcoming season, and our fall leagues begin racing, we’re sharing ways to create amazing event-weekend experiences for your entire NICA community – from riders to families to coaches! 

For those who are new to mountain biking, attending their first ever race or event weekend is full of emotions: nervousness, anticipation, and excitement! Mountain bike races and events certainly don’t look like your average youth sports event: there are costumes, noisemakers, and food trucks. Attending a race and watching the action isn’t done by sitting in the bleachers, instead, spectators find themselves hiking through the woods or the desert for the best view of the singletrack (while carrying a vuvuzela, and several cowbells, of course). 

Mountain bike races (and especially NICA races) are different: they’re more than just a sports event. Race and event weekends bring entire communities together for fun, sportsmanship, competition, adventure, and more. 

This month, we’re covering a bunch of race-weekend topics: from getting your athletes ready with pre-race prep at practice, to goal-setting, to scheming up themes and fun for your team. We’re also encouraging you and your athletes to invite someone new to your races and events this year!

There’s so much to talk about that we couldn’t cover it all in one issue of the Coaches News, so we highlighted a few of the many resources within NICA’s coach library that can help you prep for your event weekends. We hope you’ll find some new ways to bring joy, fun, and community to your team’s experience at races and events this year. And, as always, we’d love to hear about how YOU make races unforgettable for your athletes and families! Thanks for all that you do as NICA coaches. You’re providing life-changing moments for kids and communities across the country. Your impact is immeasurable!


Did you know about these NICA Coach Resources for race and event weekends?

  • NICA quick-start guide to attending a NICA event (for parents, athletes, and families)
  • Sample packing list (for athletes)
  • Sample race weekend schedule (for teams)
  • Race weekend GRiT activities
  • …and more!

You can access all of these resources (and more) in the NICA Education Center. Simply log into Pit Zone, click the “Courses, Resources, & Benefits” button, and search our coach resources at the right side of your dashboard.

Don’t forget your league’s resources/communications. Racing in each of our leagues may look different! Be prepared with local knowledge.

NICA’s Coach Education team exists to support a network of thousands of volunteer coaches across the country in their work to develop youth through the sport of mountain biking. NICA’s coach education provides coaches with the skills, knowledge, and abilities to be confident and effective leaders and role models who build strong minds, bodies, character, and communities through cycling.

Special thanks to GIRO, a gold-level NICA partner.

NICA Partners are enabling NICA to reinvent youth sports and engage families in a thriving cycling community, for life.

Our partners’ commitment to NICA’s mission has a huge impact on our student-athletes, their families and communities across the nation. NICA partners are changing the world by getting #MoreKidsOnBikes!