TEACHING MOUNTAIN BIKE SKILLS: The Skills Training Manual for NICA Coaches

By Lee McCormack, with the National Interscholastic Cycling Association

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Safely and methodically teach your athletes (and yourself) how to ride all terrain with greater safety and confidence.

Teaching Mountain Bike Skills publishes the methods Lee has developed while teaching thousands of riders and hundreds of coaches how to ride better — and teach others how to ride better. This book is part of the curriculum Lee has created for NICA coaches. While most coaches refuse to publish their methods, Lee knows this is a great way to spread the love and get more people stoked on our awesome sport.

The essential core skills of mountain biking are explained in never-before-seen depth. All concepts are clearly explained and shown, and useful drills and troubleshooting cues are detailed. Practicing the kung fu in this book is like taking a clinic with Lee, at fraction of the price.

Coaches and youth athletes will improve their skills — and they will learn a path to mastery that lets them improve for their rest of their riding lives.

About the book

Published by: Race Line Publishing

ISBN-13: 978-0974566030

Size: 8 x 10 inches

Pages: 106

Photos/illustrations: hundreds

Price: $30 + shipping

Order Teaching Mountain Bike Skills here >>>


• Be a great coach
• Fit bikes to riders
• Dial in their position
• Pedal efficiently
• Control speed
• Corner confidently
• Handle any terrain
• Ride with vision

About the author

Lee McCormack is NICA’s skills development director. He is a world renowned riding technique instructor who uses his sequential teaching curriculum to help riders of all styles and levels — BMX, mountain and road; beginners to pros — ride better, safer and faster. Lee wrote and illustrated the books Mastering Mountain Bike Skills, Welcome to Pump Track Nation and Pro BMX Skills.

Teaching Mountain Bike Skills distills McCormack’s never-before-published teaching methods, and it features content specifically developed to help coaches make the most of their programs.

Lee wants to thank veteran coach and NICA Educational Programs Director Austin McInerny for fine-tuning this book with his evil red pen, and he must give massive props to the crew at the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine — Lester Pardoe, Rob Pickels and Sean Madsen — for sharing their knowledge about pedaling technique and bike fit.

Sample Layouts

How is this book different from Mastering Mountain Bike Skills 2nd Edition?

Good question.

MMBSii is the bible on how to ride a mountain bike. TMBS is the bible on how to learn and teach mountain biking.

MMBSii covers lots of skills broadly. TMBS covers the core skills very deeply. Everything you can possibly do on a bike is built upon these core skills. The more deeply you master them, the smoother, safer and faster you can ride all terrain.

TMBS gives you specific methods, drills and cues to help yourself and others rider smoother and faster.

Lee uses this content in his clinics, and all riders — beginners to pros — say it makes their riding way better. It’s not unusual for a highly experienced and fit rider to report faster lap times with lower heart rate and wattage. Pretty cool.

Why does this book cost more than Mastering Mountain Bike Skills 2nd Edition?

Another good question. TMBS has less than half the pages of MMBSii, but it costs $6 more.

Mainly, color printing is quite expensive, especially in small numbers. MMBSii is published by a big traditional publisher that prints overseas in huge numbers. TMBS is published by Lee’s small publishing company, and it is printed in very small numbers.

Also, the information in TMBS is extremely valuable. This teaching (and learning) approach comes directly from Lee’s experience working with thousands of riders and hundreds of coaches. If you want to become a ride better, this information is the next best thing to taking a clinic with Lee (for just $30). If you want to teach others to ride better, this will give you the tools you need to keep them safe and help them rip. If you want to build your own coaching practice, this information will give you a strong head start to earning significant money.

Given all that, $29.95 plus shipping is a great deal.

Used by lots of other coaches and programs

This copy is going to IMBA.

Order Teaching Mountain Bike Skills here >>>

24 replies
  1. leelikesbikes says:

    Hi Lee,

    I’m lovin’ your new book. It goes over all the essentials in really thorough point by point detail. The section on the attack position is a thing of beauty.

    I really like the points made about riding to always see and set yourself up for your next turn. I think this is an extremely effective way to use your vision on your bike and keep looking farther forward. I even have been implementing it while climbing, and it has improved my climbing and made me faster. By looking for the next corner you always have something in your mind to focus on, and forces you to keep your head up. My first few times doing this my eyes were literally sore by the end of the ride.



  2. leelikesbikes says:

    Hey Noah,

    Right now I am not planning to distribute TMBS electonically. Security is really sketchy with PDFs, and Kindle doesn’t allow the kind of graphical layouts that I rely on to convey info.

    However, I’ll take a fresh look at the options. Things are evolving fast in the ebook world.



  3. Greg Everett says:


    I’d like to pick up a copy of Teaching MTB Skills by Wednesday afternoon. (gift for my son – last minute of course) Are there any shops in town that have copies? Can I pick one up from you? In boulder? Lyons?

    Greg Everett

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  5. Daniel says:

    Nice find here.

    I am a beginner biker and would like to read the basics, good techniques and tips for becoming a better rider in the terrain.

    Which book is right choice? Since I don’t teach anything I’m puzzled. The TMBS or MMBSii?

  6. leelikesbikes says:


    MMBSii has broad coverage of many aspects of riding.

    TMBS has narrow but very deep coverage of the core riding skills.

    They are both great resources. MMBSii is a better bathroom read!


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  9. Riaan Prinsloo says:

    Hi Lee

    I have a son that for the first time is really showing interest in sports (MTB riding). I would like to assist him as far as possible. Previously (2012) you mentioned that you might be investigate the option of delivering TMBS in pdf format. Any progress in this area? With the current exchange rate postage and packaging to South Africa will nearly double your price.

  10. leelikesbikes says:


    I have not made a pdf version of Teaching Mountain Bike Skills. You know I’m biased, but I think TMBS is a great value at double the price.

    According to Austin McInerny, executive director of NICA:

    “Lee’s invaluable Teaching Mountain Bike Skills manual and his hands-on trainings have equipped over 1,500 coaches nationwide with the necessary skills and teaching styles to teach and mentor adolescents as they learn to ride safely. With over 5,000 active participants in our programs, it is fair to say that Lee’s work is paying off in a massive way as more kids are learning to ride with the proper confidence, skills and discipline to remain life-long cyclists.”


  11. leelikesbikes says:


    There is no electronic version of this book.

    Yes, I can ship to Europe. International shipping costs $25 USD.

    If you buy this book on Amazon, international shipping might cost less.

    Have fun out there,


  12. leelikesbikes says:


    Yes! When you click the Add to Cart button and follow the directions, you’ll enter your address and the shipping fee will be added. Shipping to the UK is expensive! But the book contains some great info, and I assure you it’s worth it.

    Take care,



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