Frequently Asked Questions
- Who can attend VNTRbirds events?
A: Anyone over the age of 18 who identifies as a woman (*VNTRbirds use of women includes femmes, transgender and gender non-conforming people comfortable in women-centered spaces). Under 18 but want to attend? You just have to be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Reach out to us at [email protected].
- I’m so nervous! Is this normal? Should I still sign up?
A: ABSOLUTELY! Nerves are COMPLETELY normal prior to trying new things. Let’s be real, a mountain bike clinic can be a very vulnerable place! Rest assured, a priority of VNTRbirds is to create safe and inclusive spaces for our staff, participants, and coaches. Come join us JUST as you are, and we will have a blast. Feeling butterflies? Who isn’t?! Join us for a safe opportunity to progress, and we will guide you through skills and techniques to empower you on the bike and feel like the badass that you are!
- What is a typical clinic like? What should I expect?
A: Each VNTRbirds clinic is tailored to the length and location of each event. That being said, we have a similar flow to all of our clinics! We kick off the clinic with a morning check in, receive a legendary VNTRbirds goodie bag filled with swag from our sponsors and a bit of arts + crafts while decorating a name plate! After a group welcome + maybe a bit of a dance party, your group will be announced and you’ll meet your coaches and other participants. The morning session consists of working on technical skills and drills. Each group will go through these exercises, just at different paces depending on your group. You will work 1:1 with your coaches to get you prepared for the afternoon bringing those skills to the trail. We break for lunch mid day. Our 2 day clinics have lunch provided, and our 1 day clinics, you will be responsible for your own lunches. This is the time you will have an opportunity to switch groups if your group is not a good fit. Post lunch, you will be on trail applying the skills and drills you worked on during the morning session! Your coaches will be on hand to work through features and tackle maneuvers. The focus of the afternoon will be determined by each individual group’s desires and coach discretion. At the end of the day, you will have time to socialize and wrap up as a small group before we come together as one big community to say our goodbyes. Exchange contact information with your new buddies and coaches, and enjoy the rest of the afternoon! Our two day workshops will look similarly on day two. Pending the individual clinic, we will have tech talks from our sponsors/coaches at lunch time, optional happy hour or yoga events, and demo opportunities from our sponsors.
For details about each event, please check out the event specific registration pages.
- Q: Do you offer scholarships?
A: YES! We offer three types of scholarships. Please check out our Scholarship Page on our website for specific details and application deadlines.
- I am going to sign up for a clinic! What level rider am I?
A: We know it can be tricky to judge your riding skills and answers can be subjective. Read the descriptions below and do your best to assess your skill level (we can always make changes later):
Brand New: I have never been mountain biking or a handful or more times. I have good basic riding skills for staying on my bike and decent fitness but hesitate on most terrain. I understand braking and shifting and can handle riding on fairly smooth dirt.
Beginner: You’ve been riding flowy trails, but don’t feel comfortable going over obstacles whether ascending or descending. You tend to put your foot down when climbing steep sections, might brake too hard, and may not be sure how to get a rhythm on the trail.
Intermediate: You ride technical trails with rock gardens. You get by but don’t always make it look pretty. You might not be sure how to descend steep sections or how to steer the bike while descending or at higher speeds; you find it challenging to climb over obstacles.
Intermediate Advanced: You have good bike handling skills at both high and low speeds, you ride black trails, but you’re not sure of how to create flow. You would love to learn how to hold lines at higher speeds over technical terrain. You might be heavy on the brakes in corners and need to learn how to hold better speed in corners or berms. You’ve started getting some airtime but you’d like more confidence to hit drops and jump.
Advanced: You feel comfortable on your bike, you’ve been riding difficult, black diamond trails. You can’t always hold your lines, but you have good bike skills at both high and slow speeds. You’re comfortable getting over obstacles, getting a bit of airtime off drops and tables, and have basic cornering skills.
- What do I need to bring to a clinic?
A: We want to make sure we can spend the entire day focusing on skills and riding, so please come prepared with the recommended items. Please note: you will also receive a detailed packing list prior to the clinic.
- Most importantly do not forget your helmet and full-fingered riding gloves! If you typically wear a full-face helmet, we recommend bringing your half-shell as well for some of the morning skills sessions.
- Pack cycling gear for all potential weather, including rain, wind, and cold.
- If you have them, bring knee and elbow pads as they will be put to use. Occasionally we will have knee and elbow pads to demo. Look for details in event registration/confirmation.
- Hydration is key, so please bring a hydration pack or multiple water bottles. There will be plenty of water available at the VNTRbirds headquarters during the day to refill your packs/bottles.
- We strongly recommend you bring a bike with at least 120 mm of travel. Make sure that your bike is in good working order and freshly tuned and ready to ride all day. If your bike doesn’t meet this criteria, please email us for information on demo and rental packages. Not sure? Send us an email.
- Bring a spare tube and basic riding tools if you have them. If you don’t, no worries! Coaches and staff will all have tools for you to make adjustments to your own bike. At a minimum, please bring a spare tube that fits your tire size. For other items, you can stock up at your local bike shop.
- Bring the appropriate shoes and pedals you are most comfortable with.
- Do I need a full-face helmet and body armor?
A: Full face helmets and body protection (knee pads, elbow pads, chest protection) are not required for the clinic, however if you are attending an event at a lift access bike park, we strongly recommend a full face helmet and some degree of body protection (knee pads, elbow pads), especially if you are in an intermediate advanced or advanced group. If you are bringing a full face helmet, feel free to bring your half shell as well for the morning skills and drill session. At some of our events, we have helmet or knee/elbow pad demos. Please see each clinic specific page for more details!
- What kind of pedals should I bring? Flat or clipless?
A: The best answer here is bring whatever pedals you are most comfortable learning new skills on! If riding clipped in is second nature to you, they are fine for the clinic! Just note that you will be getting on and off your bike A LOT, so make sure you feel completely comfortable on whatever pedals you bring. This topic is hotly debated and highly based on personal preference, so reach out to us if you are losing sleep over pedal selection, and we can talk things through with you 🙂
This might be obvious, but make sure your shoes are compatible with the pedals you are bringing! Trust us, we have seen it all 😉
*Flats ARE required at the Air Clinic. See clinic details HERE.
- Can I ride my e-bike at your clinics?
A: Unfortunately, e-bikes and pedal assist bikes are not permitted in any areas that VNTRbirds currently host clinics. We can provide you with recommended shops to rent or demo a mountain bike for the clinic, then transfer the skills back to your e-bike.
- Will the clinic go on if it is raining?
A: Heck yes! A little bit of rain will not deter us. Please come prepared with a rain jacket, hat, helmet, and some extra dry layers. No refunds will be given due to inclement weather.
- Are lift tickets included with registration?
A: Yes, your registration price includes lift tickets (at applicable venues).
- But wait! I have my own season pass at a resort. Is there a discount if I have my own pass at one of the resorts where you are teaching (Snowmass, Trestle, Purgatory)?
A: ABSOLUTELY! Please use the discount code SEASONPASS when you check out for one of our clinics at the following bike parks: Snowmass, Trestle or Purgatory. You will be responsible for bringing your season pass to the clinic for use.
- How do I know where to meet for the clinic and what time to be there?
A: You will receive a pre-event email ~2 weeks prior to the event with all the details. Maybe too many details ;). Usually, check in is between 8-9 am, with our group welcome beginning promptly at 9 am. Please refer to your email with event specific details prior to arrival (if you haven’t received one, please check your spam folder)! Make sure to arrive in plenty of time to check in, make your name plate, and get your bike and gear dialed for the event. Questions? Hit us up.
- What will my group look like during the clinic?
A: Prior to events, we send an extensive survey to gauge your skill level, interest, and goals. Based on your survey response, VNTRbirds staff will group you with riders of similar skill level and what you are most excited to learn. If your skills and interest changes significantly in the few weeks prior to the clinic OR you find yourself in the wrong group at the clinic, let us know! This clinic is for YOU and we are happy to move you to a different group to ensure that you get the most out of the clinic. We will be checking in throughout the clinic day/weekend, so please speak up if something feels off.
- How big are the groups at clinics?
A: Groups can range, but you can expect to have around 6-8 people per group with 1-2 coaches. Smaller groups means more focus on your riding and plenty of time to cover lots of skills and practice.
- Is it weird if I come to the clinic solo?
Absolutely not! Most of our participants come to the clinic on their own! We are BIG into community building, and one of the best perks of our clinics is meeting new friends to get out and ride bikes with!
- If I register with my friend(s), can I be with them during the clinic?
A: Yes! When you complete the pre-clinic survey, you can let us know you are taking the clinic with a friend and that you want to be grouped together. Keep in mind that this will only work IF you have similar skill levels and goals for the clinic. Our priority is to put you in a group that will give you the best experience and opportunity for growth and learning. If you are not of similar skill level but still want to be in the same group, we will put you both in a group that aligns with the skills and goals of the least experienced rider.
- Can I reach out to other people taking the same course as me about sharing lodging or carpooling to the event?
A: Sure thing. About a month out from the event we will create a FB event and that will be a great space for you to communicate and coordinate with other participants about the event.
- Do you have lodging recommendations?
A: Sure do! Please reach out to us with any questions about lodging. We have partners at each of our 2 day locations, so let us know what you are looking for and we can connect you with a lodging partner that offers a discounted rate for VNTRbirds. Reach out to [email protected] with specific lodging specific questions.
- Should we tip our coaches? How much?
A: Tipping is not expected but it is greatly appreciated by our coaches. If you feel your coaches worked very hard to provide an excellent experience for you, we would encourage you to tip as much as you can afford. A general guideline would be 10-20% of your clinic cost.
- Oh no! Something came up (injury, illness, other plans, etc.). What is VNTRbirds refund policy?
A: Notice of cancellation more than 14 days in advance will receive a full refund, minus a 10% administrative fee*.
Notice of cancellation less than 14 days in advance will receive no refund. Clients MAY have the option to transfer to another course or clinic with a $50 transfer fee (if available during the same calendar year).
*There is a processing fee on credit card transactions that is NOT collected by VNTRbirds, therefore we are unable to refund this amount.
- What are pedal parties?
Once or twice a month VNTRbirds host pedal parties, a free women’s meetup to bike with a group of awesome and like-minded women on different trails. Come out to meet new friends, progress your skills and have fun! There’s nothing like dirt under your tires and cruising single track all summer with your crew. The event is free but you must register because space is limited!
- Are pedal parties beginner friendly?
Yes, we typically break into groups depending on your level/pace you want to ride: mellow, sporty or spicy. We’ll give details about the trails and mileage each group is going to ride before the event so keep an eye out for those details and you can decide if the ride is right for you that month. We also make sure we take lots of breaks for rest, sessioning + photo opportunities, so the entire group stays together!
- I heard VNTRbirds bought VIDA MTB Series. What does that mean for the season?
A: YES! VNTRbirds purchased VIDA in March 2023. Because our goals and values align it feels like natural growth. What does this mean for you? MORE MOUNTAIN BIKE CLINICS! Expect to see a lot of familiar faces from both VIDA & VNTRbirds at our events. VNTRbirds staff includes 3 VIDA staff members, so the purchase is a true collaboration of forces! Much will be the same that you are used to with VIDA and VNTRbirds events, but don’t be surprised if you see some differences too. We are working as a team to provide optimal experiences for YOU.
- I’m a certified bike coach. Can I work for VNTRbirds?
A: Please! We would love to have you. Please reach out to us at [email protected] for more information.
- I think what you are doing is awesome. Can I volunteer?
A: YES! YES, PLEASE! Reach out to us at [email protected] for more information.
- I still have more questions! Who can I contact?
A: We’re happy to answer any other questions you may have. Reach out to us at [email protected] and we will chat and get your questions answered.