Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Senior Honors Thesis

Department or School

Health Promotion and Human Performance


Mountain biking began for me as an escape from the commotion of urban society. I was looking for a way to get out of life’s normal grind and take advantage of my love for being active and outside. Mountain biking was the perfect sport to meet my desires. I have become an advocate for mountain biking early on. I am now taking this opportunity to teach people about the sport I have come to love.

The objectives of this book are two fold. Part I serves as a comprehensive guide to cross-country mountain biking that will provide new comers with the information they need to “slingshot” themselves into mountain biking. Part II will provide tips and knowledge that can help everyone improve their performance. For some, the transition from the road to the dirt is a simple task, but for others the process can be much more difficult. This book is designed for those beginners who are having a tough time adapting to the new challenges of off-road riding. It is also a book for those recreational riders who wish to gain an edge or enhance their skill level.

When using the information provided in Part II, it is important to put theory into practice. After reading this section, take one of the key points into mind and hit the trails. Ride the same as before, with the exception of the key point you chose to work on. With practice, the skill becomes automatic. A rider who practices often will develop a schema, or automatic path of action for each skill. Continue working on other key points, one or two at a time, until they too become automatic.

I hope that all new mountain bikers will enjoy being closer to nature, take pride in being active, and fall in love with the amazing adventure waiting on every trail. I encourage all new riders to “take on” cross-country mountain biking.