The school year may be coming to an end, but middle and high school students will soon start practicing for fall sports.
The West Virginia Interscholastic Cycling League is adding a new sport to the list of options: mountain biking.
The league is launching its inaugural mountain biking season this fall, and if you are a middle or high school student in the Northern Panhandle or just across the river in Ohio, you have time to sign up.
It costs less than $100 to register, and if you do not have a bike, do not worry. The Northern West Virginia Composite Team will find you one.
There are four races in a season, but students can opt out if they do not want to compete.
Organizers just want to get kids mountain biking.
“It’s character building for sure. It’s not an easy sport, but once you finish a race or even just finish a ride you just feel so good about yourself and you feel like you can do it,” said League Director Cassie Smith.
The league is committed to making sure all students have a positive experience.
If you play a fall sport like football or soccer, they will work around your schedule to make sure you are included.
If you do not play a sport at all, mountain biking might be a good fit.
“Not every kid is cut out for a traditional sport. Not everybody plays football. Not everybody is into that kind of sport. We’re co-ed, so that’s different than a lot of traditional sports, but we also want everybody to have an opportunity to participate, meaning that nobody sits on the bench. Everybody that wants to be on our team, we will make a way for you to be on our team,” said Team Director Jim Adams.
If you are wondering if mountain biking is difficult, the answer is: yes. But organizers say bikers will gain strength, character, and some new friends.
“It’s just a great way to build muscle in different ways that you didn’t think there’d be. It’s so fun. It’s just great. It’s family,” said high school student Libby Adams.
If you are home schooled or enrolled in private school, the league is open to you as well.
If you are interested in signing up or would like more information, just call 304-715-BIKE.