The Madison, WI “Westside Composite” MTB team formed 8 years ago and was started by head coach Mike McGarry. From an initial team of less than 10, the 2020 roster totaled over 130 riders. Under one main umbrella, we now have multiple teams – Madison West, Madison Memorial, Verona and Verona Composite (which includes Edgewood, Memorial, Oregon, Belleville and other local teams).
The focus of the teams is to create a positive environment for young riders to discover the lifelong joy of being able to ride a bike well on trails. Some athletes set goals that are performance or skill related, while plenty of other athletes are focused on personal improvement which comes easily with a sport like mountain biking. Can I get up a hill today that I’ve never been able to climb? Can I keep up with Jenny this year who always rides faster than me?
Thanks to the awesome area MTB trails most athletes are able to bike to/from practice on the Southwest and Military Ridge trail system. Fitchburg parks provides awesome advanced riding opportunities at Quarry Ridge Recreation Area and Dane County parks provides Seminole Trails for newer riders. All trails are maintained by our friends at CORP (and we encourage athletes to join trail maintenance days with CORP).
The team has coaches spanning from interested parents who have very little mountain biking experience to coaches who have a long experience with riding and racing.
With enrollments expected to remain over 100 athletes, we are always looking for help with coaching. If you are a parent of a rider on the team or simply an adult human that loves to ride on dirt and want to give back and help get more kids on bikes please drop us a line. None of our coaches are professional mountain bikers (in case you were wondering).
Being a level 1 coach just means you meet the basic requirement under the league to ride with the team at practice or pre-ride at races. Level 1 coaches all go through background checks as well as training on safety and concussion awareness. Level 1 coaches assist as directed by the head coach. This is where all coaches start and some parents who really only have time to help out a 3-4 practices will often just stay in this category – which is still awesome because it really helps!
Level 2 coaches satisfy all of the Level 1 requirements, but also add in CPR, on the bike skills courses as well as spending time with the team gaining valuable experience. Level 2 coaches assist level 3 coaches with advanced tasks such as leading rides.
Level 3 coaches satisfy all of the level 1 and 2 requirements, as well as taking further education, wilderness first aid and have spent the most time riding with the team. Level 3 coaches take a leadership role within the team. Equivalent competencies as head coach.