Ambassador Highlights: Mountain Biking

July 13, 2017

Ambassador Highlights: Mountain Biking

 

One of our newest ambassadors has taken it upon herself to give women a safe group to transcend into the world of Mountain Biking. Sarah Wakefield has created MTB DIVAS (@mtbdivas) on instagram and is making the Mountain Bike industry do a double take on the trails. Sarah explains a little bit about her group of women and the world of biking here...

"I ride a mixed bag of MTB disciplines. I ride cross country, downhill and also love to mess around at dirt jump parks. I have competed in a few events over the years. I've done a few gravity enduros, which are a mix of cross country and downhill and I've done urban downhill racing as well, which is racing through town streets/paths/steps/cliffs. They are super fun 😊. When I first started MTB a few years ago, my main companions on the trails were sheep 😂which is why I started researching other female MTB groups. They were very few out there and none local to me. So I decided to start my own. It took a while to get off the ground, but now we are very well known throughout the female MTB Facebook world. We've  been mentioned in a few articles lately. I'm involved in a forum to try and encourage more girls into the sport and I can definitely see the trend of ladies involvement increasing. Especially with the likes of Rachel Atherton and Manon Carpenter doing so well in the world cup downhill racing. I think the hardest thing for women in this sport is children. The guilt of spending time on a mountain on a Saturday or Sunday and not with the kids, the expense which comes from the sport, trying to find babysitters.... All these things, men don't seem to have a problem with. There are also unfortunately, still a few men out there who are very rude to female riders, but they are only a few. 
I love MTB, for me it's because when I'm riding, I get a break from being mum.... I'm the "old me" when I'm in the mountains. It's my escape. I've also met some amazing people through the sport and through my group and to see ladies out on the bike 6 months after a c section is incredible!" -Crew Ambassador Sarah Wakefield 

Fab turn out today for our rookie trail ride. Fun session in the skills area too 🚴‍♀️

A post shared by Sarah Wakefield (@mtbdivas) on

 

The amount of women pursuing mountain biking right now is astounding. We are proud to stand behind a lot of these women and give them a platform to share their skills, ideas, support, and thoughts. We have women that compete and ride for fun, either way, they are pushing the limits for both themselves and the sport. I had the opportunity to ask a few of our ambassadors what fuels them to both go up and come downhill on their bikes and this is what they had to say. 

 

 

"Mountain Biking is awesome, there are few ladies that do it, but the ones that do are wicked, they're all very friendly. It doesn't matter how good you are, usually there very encouraging! Which is definitely what you need when you first start riding - to build confidence. " - Crew Ambassador Rhianna Silsby

 

 

 

 

SheShredsCo: What kind of mountain biking to you do, and do you compete? 

Kaileigh Scott: I mostly enjoy downhill mountain biking, and yes I do compete. I am currently racing the Snow Summit Downhill Race Series. 

Allie Needler: I downhill bike!  I do not compete at this point because I have struggled with knee injuries for the past 4 years.  I would love to get to the point of competing in the next year if I can stay healthy!

Amanda Dexter: I do trail/ enduro but mainly I like to jump of stuff. I have started to compete in Enduro competitions and would like to do some downhill races in future (when I can buy a downhill bike.) Enduro is a discipline in MTB that allows you to explore places you couldn't necessarily see without a bike (adventure). You have to be a good all round rider as it's both downhill and endurance riding, there's technical stuff, jumps and drops and fast flowy stuff so basically it has everything!  

Ricki Dzuba:  I absolutely love extreme down hill mountain biking. The thrill is like non other. I am starting to get into cross country Mountain Biking as well to help with endurance. I compete in DH Mountain Biking every now and then if there is an event close to home.
 

SheShredsCo:  Do you see a lot of other women out there biking? If not, why do you think that is?

Haylee Davies: No. I think because they're intimidated/scared. I'm scared myself sometimes, but I really do enjoy it so I go anyways. Plus it isn't that bad once you do it.  I work in the bike industry and I know many woman with bikes, but they don't go. I always ask them to come and they always back out or just say no. I wish more woman did mountain cause I need lady friends!

Kaileigh Scott: Every season I see more and more females participating in downhill mountain biking, however there is still many more guys and I think this is because downhill is much more challenging compared to regular mountain biking. 

Allie Needler: I don't see very many women out where I bike here in Park City for downhill biking.  There are a few at the bike park working on progressing in the sport, but the downhill game seems to still be male dominated.  I rarely can find another girl to go rip downhill with!

Amanda Dexter: There is a good community of women Mountain Bikers in the UK but no where near as many women ride here in comparison to other countries however it is becoming more accessible to women in the UK.  It is definitely marketed more to the men.

Ricki Dzuba: DH Mountain Biking is definitely a hurting sport for women from where I am from. They think DH is hard and scary and that's why I became and instructor so I can help show them that it's not scary and that it's fun. I teach them step by step to help them gain confidence to try harder and harder trails each time they ride and that it's not as scary as they think.

 

SheShredsCo: Whats the hardest thing you face on your bike?

Haylee Davies:  Body weight distribution for sure!! When I get scared I freeze up stiff. I need to learn when to shift body weight and stuff to maneuver easily and stuff.

Kaileigh Scott: The biggest challenge I am facing this season is trying to improve my times each race run. 

Allie Needler: I have a legitimate fear of heights so sometimes those big berms can really be scary for me.  I try to keep my head on straight and focus on the trail coming up instead of the outside edges of the trail and it helps to keep me grounded.  Doing the same trail a few times helps me to get more comfortable and know what is coming up ahead, then I can really let loose.

Amanda Dexter: The hardest thing is when you get a mental block against a feature and it could be easier or smaller than something else you can do but because it's different it is scary all over again! Also learning bike maintenance...it all seems so difficult and so is trying to find somewhere that takes women and bikes seriously enough to teach you properly and not just shrug you off. 

Ricki Dzuba: When I try something new like drops and doubles, just finding the confidence to do them as I don't wanna get hurt hahaha, the ground hurts, but the trying something new does get the adrenaline pumping and I love that. 

 

SheShredsCo: Why do you love mountain biking? 

Haylee Davies: It's my happy time. Gets me out in the mountains, it's an amazing workout, you meet awesome people and it's just so fun!! Eventually I'd like to compete. I don't think I'm good enough though. Still kinda of rookie. 

Kaileigh Scott: I love downhill mountain biking because it is very challenging and I love the adrenaline rush I get every time I ride. 

Allie Needler: Mountain biking started for me because of missing skiing in the Summer. You get some of the same feel with going fast and ripping through the trees.  There is something about being out in the middle of nowhere that is completing humbling.  I love being out on the mountains and exploring so downhill mountain biking mixes the best of all of the worlds for me. At the bike park I love filming and taking photos to help progressing.  I am lucky to have a really supportive boyfriend who coaches me along the way!

Amanda Dexter: I love mountain biking because it's fun, I don't have to have a certain body type to excel in it (I.e I wanted to do gymnastics but told I was too tall, I loved running but told I needed to be lean to be fast etc.)  I also love it because my dog can join in, and because I have made so many awesome friends both men and women! Or I can just go by myself some days (and by myself I mean with my Trail dog Kai 😂) and my main love was that growing up I never thought I could do something so cool and awesome - I didn't have the self confidence to go for it and then when my patient boyfriend had patience and confidence for me to try it I realised I could and my self confidence grew all by itself the more I could do on my bike (now I leave the bf behind and go out with the girls!!) 

Ricki Dzuba: The thrill, the amazing community, the friendships it makes and it takes you to some amazing places around the world. It allows you to experience and explore new cultures. 

 

Excited for race #2 next weekend😛🤘🏼 @sheshredsco #sheshredscocrew 📷: @photo_zones

A post shared by Kaileigh (@kaileigh_23) on

There's nowhere else I'd rather be... @sheshredsco #sheshredscocrew 📸:@steezdliving

A post shared by Allie (@aneedlaa) on


Want to get into mountain biking, but not sure where to get gear? By shopping through our affiliates you are still supporting SheShredsCo! Check them out here:

Jenson USA: http://bit.ly/2sw34Yc

Backcountry: http://bit.ly/1A9hVci

The-House: http://bit.ly/1jRTytE

 

 



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