When Gabby Huffman’s parents started the San Domenico Mountain Bike Team, she knew she wanted to spend her high school years racing with the NorCal NICA league. And, after being named the Team Captain her senior year and graduating, she knew she wasn’t ready to leave NICA behind.
NICA coaches are trained to emphasize values like teamwork, sportsmanship, and mutual respect, and to create an environment where athletes feel supported and encouraged to take risks and push themselves to achieve their goals. This includes recognizing and celebrating the achievements of all athletes, regardless of their level of ability or performance, and encouraging athletes to support each other through both successes and setbacks.
March is Women’s History Month, a collection of days where we honor the trailblazing women who came before us. It has been a historic decade for American women in cycling, and the NICA community has rallied around the mantra: More Girls on Bikes!
What does the new face of mountain biking look like? One North California student-athlete wrote an article for school about the growth of mountain biking as a highschool sport and some of the barriers of diversity and inclusion that NICA has overcome.
In late October, 650 student athletes, 300 coaches and other assorted friends and family gathered in the Pennsylvania mountains to have an adventure. The Raystown Radness and PICL Jam was an end-of-season celebration for members of the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Cycling League (PICL). There was no racing involved, but plenty of riding.
Richard Bennett, a head coach in the Utah League, wanted to start a team in the same underserved community where he provides health care. He gathered bikes, got some help, and got to work. The results were life-changing, for both him and the kids. Here is his story.
In late July, close to 50 women gathered beside the Willamette River in the mountains of Oregon to connect, learn from experts and each other, and ride mountain bikes. In a sport still dominated by men, the retreat provided an oasis for women to share their experiences and brainstorm ideas about how to attract more girls to mountain biking and more women to coaching.
NICA programs bring JOY and change lives across our nationwide mountain biking community. This holiday season as we invite you to Share the Ride, Change a Life, take a moment to hear from our coaches and student-athletes how NICA programs have changed their lives and brought them joy. Meet NICA Student-Athletes Elizabeth Leitzel, Peyton Wilson, and Beck Earnest-McClelland as they share their experiences of Joy and how NICA has changed their own lives!