teamEMS review of Vida MTB Womens Clinic Sedona, AZ
teamEMS review of the Womans only Vida MTB Clinic
EMS Unlimited provides event medical staffing in the form of Bike EMTs and Bike Paramedics. Bike races look to our expertise for on-course safety by providing capable riders that can gain rapid access to reported injuries. In addition EMS Unlimited sponsors teamEMS, our initiative to get as many professionals in the emergency response industry on bikes. This is our way of promoting a healthy outlet for work-life balance by providing affordable and accessible outdoor recreation. Many members of our Bike Medical team and teamEMS are women who, just like the boys, want to gain confidence and improve technical MTB skills. Through our vast experience working with many different bike events EMS Unlimited saw no better way to support our Lady Shredders than sending them to a Vida MTB Clinic. Bike Medic and teamEMS rider Chelsea just returned from the Sedona, AZ stop on the Vida MTB Series and tells us about her experience:
"On the day of the VIDA clinic, I was overwhelmed with excitement, giggles and smiles as approximately sixty female mountain bikers flowed into the mountain bike skills park in Sedona, AZ. It was a full spectrum of women whom varied in age, skill level and mountain biking backgrounds converging in one place to learn and support each other as female mountain bikers. We were first introduced to Sarah, the President of Operations who said, “Congratulations! You’ve made it through the hardest part and that’s just signing up for the clinic and showing up!” I couldn’t agree with her more because once I was there, any inkling of nervousness, had been dissipated by the sheer stoke and excitement from my fellow participants and coaches. VIDA does a tremendous job with creating a supportive and empowering environment for female riders that allows you to challenge yourself and confidently grow as a stronger female mountain biker. They did a great job with splitting the sixty riders up into small groups of about 5-8 riders of similar skill level and assigning 2-3 coaches per group. I had the opportunity to be coached by Dawn and Emily, who I coined as my dream estrogen coaching team. Both were very strong and skilled riders but more importantly for a clinic setting, they were great coaches and knew how to teach. Dawn is a positive-verbal-judo master and gave every girl in our group that “Ah-ha” moment by verbally breaking down a skill so you knew exactly how to do it before you tried. Emily’s finesse and straight-to-the-point instruction when demonstrating a feature or skill gave me the reassurance and confidence to attempt features I never imagined myself riding. The one-two coaching combo that I experienced was phenomenal and I can’t thank them enough for starting off my mountain bike season with more confidence, control and skill than I had ended with in my previous season. As an EMS provider that responds to emergencies on mountain bike courses built for experts, I know I can do my job safely and efficiently after attending the VIDA clinic. I highly recommend VIDA’s mountain bike clinics to any rider and at any skill level. Not only will your mountain biking skills be pushed forward but also you’ll walk away with a few more female friends to ride with in the future.
VIDA also provided many activities that were free to anyone including group rides, yoga sessions lead by VIDA coach Tricia, and Tech Talks. If I had to suggest one component of the VIDA activities that could be improved on it would be the group ride. On the first group ride we had about 24 female riders, split up into two non-descriptive groups. Not only were we a giant female force on the trail for any hiker, dog or fellow mountain biker to reckon with but we were so varied in skill level that it was hard to keep the groups flowing and together. But by the end of the ride, we all had a blast and lots of laughs. Tricia’s yoga class was the perfect way to start my day. Her class gave me inspiration to tackle the Sedona trails and feeling refreshed. Two Tech Talks were given by Andy Jones of Squish Dynamics and registered Dietitian/Nutritionist Uriell Proft-Carlson from Skratch Labs. Andy gave the most informative talk on mountain bike suspension and he even tuned up my suspension during the festival so I could enjoy my full suspension bike to it’s fullest potential. I’ve never felt my bike ride better, so when I left the festival I even gave him my fork and seat post dropper to do some scheduled maintenance and repairs. Uriell introduced me to my new favorite hydration and recovery drinks by Skratch Labs. They are seriously delicious and are made with wholesome ingredients that you can actually pronounce when you read the nutritional label. While eating the incredible cookies she made with Skratch Labs Cookie Mix, she gave a great summary talk on how to prepare your fuel before, during and after your ride. She really helped me understand what I could be doing better when replacing the fuel that I used while working races or just out for a recreational ride. I highly recommend her articles on Skratch Labs blog or even paying her a visit at her private practice Whole Life Nutrition in Breckenridge, CO.
All in all, I recommended all aspects of VIDA MTB series to all the ladies of all skill levels. I look forward to trying other locations and even making Sedona Mountain Bike Festival an annual event to get me ready for the season.
Chelsea Gardner, Firefighter/Paramedic EMS Unlimited, teamEMS"