MIAS (Mountain Bike Instructors Award Scheme) is a UK based mountain bike instructor qualification scheme that has been around for over 30 years. It was started in 1989 and has now qualified over 20,000 instructors who work all over the world. There are now 4 levels on mountain bike instructor qualification, each level progressively qualifying you to teach/guide to a higher level. Craig has been a MIAS tutor since 2017 and is one of the only course providers in France.

Mountain-Bike Leader Level 1 & 2

These courses are particularly beneficial for those who wish to gain employment or work as independent operators within the industry. They are also very popular with teachers, youth leaders, scout leaders etc. who will benefit from a recognised qualification.

Level 1 Non-Technical Terrain

This qualification is aimed at those who wish to lead groups of beginners in non-technical terrain (forest tracks, canal towpaths etc). Basic Skills - allowing access into low-level terrain, with little potential hazards. i.e. country parks, canal towpaths, bridleways and cycle paths in non-wilderness areas where help is almost immediately accessible. Successful candidates will need to have a current First Aid Certificate or be working towards obtaining one.

Level 2 Technical Terrain

This qualification is aimed at those who wish to lead groups of beginners in non technical terrain and intermediate riders in technical (rocky /demanding terrain). For low level ride on bridleways and wilderness areas. Intermediate Skills - allowing access into Wild Country, with the potential hazards that surround such terrain. Successful candidates will need to have a current First Aid Certificate and good map reading skills.

The Level 1 & Level 2 courses are run together. Candidates & the course instructor will decide after the initial assessment period which certification the individual candidates will undergo on the course, Level 1 or Level 2. The course has national accreditation with The Association of British Cycle Coaches (A.B.C.C.), Cyclist’s Touring Club (C.T.C.) and is recognised by the Adventure Activities Licensing Authority (AALA), Adventuremark.

Course syllabus

  • Group management
  • Communication
  • Coaching skills
  • Navigation
  • Route planning
  • Risk assessment
  • Management
  • Legal issues
  • Recording systems
  • Access & conservation
  • Equipment requirements
  • Riding skills
  • Emergency repairs

The syllabus shown above is assessed to meet MIAS requirements by the following methods:

Candidates who wish to be assessed at Level 1 must be able to demonstrate basic off-road riding skills and have a current First Aid Certificate or be working towards obtaining one
Candidates who wish to be assessed at Level 2 must be able to demonstrate strong off road riding skills including step drops (up to 1/2 metre), descending braking in a controlled manner, effective climbing and pedaling techniques, ability to ride in rough / rocky terrain. Have a current First Aid Certificate or be working towards obtaining one

Course cost Level 1 & 2 €300

Dates to be announced once the world is back to normal!

Level 3 Mountainous

This level covers areas defined as mountainous by mountain training UK. You will already need to be a MIAS level 2 or equivalent, show evidence that you ride in mountainous terrain and are proficient with advanced map reading and use of GPS. You will be able to guide groups beyond 30 mins of cycling assistance. You will require advanced riding techniques to ride mountainous terrain with drops up to 1 metre, advanced map reading and group management. AALS may require you to hold additional qualifications to work in this terrain (e.g. ML, WGLA or equivalent MOD qualifications). Includes Red/Black bike park trails.

Course Cost Level 3 €300

ABMG and the new European guide qualification

After you have completed your MIAS level 1, 2 and 3 then you can apply to join the ABMG (Assosiation of British Mountain Bike Guides) and start working towards your Level 4. This is the highest qualification in the industry and is recognised in all European countries. This is the new pathway towards gaining the French Carte Pro! The diagram below outlines the full pathway from level 1 through to level 4 European award.