CPOMG Mountain Bike Team operates under the governing body of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA), who provides guidance on most policies and procedures for the club. All athletes will become familiar with the NICA Rule Book, which provide for safe and fair race events.
The mission of this program is to provide students of the greater Champlin, Osseo and Maple Grove area the opportunity to cycle with the coaching and camaraderie that will help them achieve both competitive and non-competitive goals in a safe and enjoyable manner.
Cycling should be viewed as a lifetime sport, and the program shall be managed to encourage this. Further, the CPOMG Team is a racing team that will balance competition with the aspects of also being an inclusive club. We want to keep this sport fun. We want the camaraderie and friendships developed around riding a bike to last a lifetime. We are inclusive by design and student-centric.
Academic Policy: To be eligible, a student must be making satisfactory progress toward the school's requirement for graduation. It is the Team’s stance that the sport of cycling is a wonderful way to live a healthier and happier life, but it is extremely important to achieve good grades in school. If a student is unable to maintain passing grades, they will be asked to reduce or eliminate the amount of time they participate in club activities so that they can get those grades back up.
CPOMG MTB team recognizes that families are busy. Unlike many sports, we offer practices only 2-3 times per week because, as cyclists, it is better to have longer focused rides with plenty of rest between. This schedule is convenient for many families. Athletes are not required to attend a minimum number of practices; however, coaches strongly encourage athletes to attend all practices in order to make the most progress throughout the season. Athletes are similarly not required to attend all races, though coaches will strongly encourage them to participate because all athletes score points for their team, and the more athletes we have, the more points we score.
Beyond race points, student-athletes come to depend on each other throughout the season. Attendance is a very important part of building a strong and successful community.
Trail Etiquette & Code of Conduct
1. Ride Predictability:
When riding with others always ride in a straight, steady, and predictable manner. Swerving onto sidewalks, berms or jumps is unacceptable and will result in strict discipline from a coach or League Director. There is no jumping on team rides; keep both tires on the ground.
2. Wear a helmet at all times.
Under no circumstances should a student be on their bike without a helmet fastened to their head. While other athletes may be seen cruising around before and after practice or races without a helmet, CPOMG members will be suspended from practicing or racing for violating this rule. If you are on a bike, there is a helmet properly fastened to your head. It is acceptable to ride a stationary trainer without the use of a helmet. See NICA Rulebook 2.1.
3. Obey Traffic Laws.
Student-athletes are required by law to obey all traffic laws. See NICA Rulebook 4.7. Athletes are required to be aware of specific laws that pertain to bicyclists which can be found here.
4. Music Players/ Headphones.
NICA student/athletes are not allowed to race or ride with headphones or other portable musical devices. Headphones are permitted while using a stationary trainer. See NICA Rulebook 2.7.
5. Cell Phones.
While having a cell phone during practices is a smart thing to do, it is not acceptable to make or answer calls while riding. Students must safely come to a complete stop and place both feet on the ground before using a cell phone. See NICA Rulebook 2.8.
6. Always Yield.
Even if at times it seems inconvenient. Being sensitive to how others perceive you will assure a positive image for your sport and minimize the restrictions that follow confrontations and negative encounters. Remember that bicycles in the backcountry can be an unwelcome experience for horses and hikers.
7. Pass with Care.
Let others know of your presence well in advance. Use a chime or audible greeting to avoid startling others. Be especially careful when passing a horse, as each will react differently; stop and ask the rider for instructions. By asking if the horse is easily spooked, you show an awareness of the rider’s needs. Sometimes it may necessary to dismount and remove your bike from the trail to allow others to pass. See NICA Rulebook 2.16.
8. Positive Sporting Attitude.
NICA student-athletes are expected to display an excellent sporting attitude during all NICA league events and should treat all other student-athletes, coaches, spectators, and officials with respect. Fair play and respectful, kind, supportive behavior is expected of all NICA student-athletes. Profanity in any situation is not acceptable. See NICA Rulebook 2.4.
9. Stay on Legal Trails Only.
Riding off-trail damages meadows and other fragile ecosystems. Only ride on approved trails, and only when they are marked as being open. Never cut switchbacks as this accelerates erosion. Beware the types of soil you are riding on. Never ride on muddy trails and carry your bicycle around muddy spots. See NICA Rulebook 2.3.
10. Control your speed.
Safe speeds are relative to terrain and your experience as a rider. Be able to stop safely without skidding in the distance that you can see ahead. Approach switchbacks and turns in anticipation of someone coming around the bend. See NICA Rulebook 2.2.
11. Do Not Litter.
Pack out what you pack in, and if possible, carry out more than you share. See the Leave No Trace guidelines in NICA Rulebook 2.6.
12. Ride Only on Authorized Trails.
Check with local authorities regarding open trails and conditions, and with landowners regarding private land access. Stay off trails that are closed to bicycles.
13. Avoid riding alone.
If possible practice riding with at least one other person. If you plan to ride alone, alert someone to your general location, the route you plan to take, and your approximate time of return. See NICA Rulebook 4.6
14. Plan Ahead.
The off-road bicycle will open new horizons to you. Some of these should be approached with respect. If distances are involved, do not travel solo. Expect weather changes. Leave word where you plan to go and when you plan to return.
15. Minimize Impacts.
The practice of minimum impact wilderness use is the philosophy of responsible off-road cyclists. Take only pictures.
Team Captains are an important part of a school team. They serve as key motivators and leaders on rides and at races. They mentor all riders and communicates with adult ride leaders about any rider or ride concerns. Team captains will be chosen by the head coach, based on discussions with the ride leaders and a vote from the athletes. There will be one captain from each of the schools, those names will be announced at the end of season banquet. Additional selection of captains may be performed at Coach's discretion,
Substance Use Policy
- NICA student-athletes are subject to all U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) rules pertaining to anti-doping (a list of banned substances is available here) See NICA Rulebook 2.9.
- NICA's list of other banned substances: Caffeine is an addictive substance that enhances performance. NICA leagues deem caffeinated products as inappropriate for young student-athletes. Caffeinated sports products (bars, gels, and sports drinks) are banned from NICA league races and activities (including practices).
The Champlin Park, Osseo and Maple Grove School Districts have varying policies on varsity lettering for mountain biking. For the 2021 season, Champlin Park allows lettering for qualified riders, while Osseo and Maple Grove follow MN State High School League activities and do not. Efforts are underway to change this position with Osseo and Maple Grove. Osseo and Maple Grove School’s do, however, allow clubs to award patches. Varsity Letters and patches are awarded based on the following criteria:
In order to be eligible, as a member of the CPOMG MTB team, a student-athlete must meet each of the following 5 requirements.
- Performance Criteria: Eligibility is met if any of the following are met:
- Any racer competing in Varsity
- Any racer finishing in the top 50% of JV at the end of season ranking
- Any racer finishing in the top 5 end of season ranking for their category or top 3 in any individual race.
- Any racer who scores team points in three or more races.
- Coach's discretion based on an athlete’s participation and performance over several years.
- Compete in all 5 races (DNF will count as athlete participation). The Only exclusion would be for illness or family emergency. Only one exclusion per season is allowed and it must be approved by the Coach/Team Director.
- Complete 150 hours of sanctioned team-related activities. Activities are any team-related function.
- Notify Coaches/Team Director/Team Captains at the start of the season with intent to letter. Develop a realistic plan to achieve the requirement.
- Complete minimum of 3 hours of community service related to cycling. Athletes must obtain approval from Coach/Team Director prior to service project start.
No Questions asked Policy
CPOMG MTB team coaches and student-athletes will never forcefully encourage any rider to attempt a bike maneuver that is beyond one's ability to safely complete. As coaches we will strive to teach new and sometimes challenging bike handling skills that, once mastered, will make athletes faster, safer, and more confident. However, it is ultimately the athlete who must individually deem these maneuvers to be overly risky for their personal abilities. Coaches, parents, and athletes, will respect the intuition of others by not asking someone to ride beyond their ability.
Physicals and Concussion Baseline Policy
Any student who intends to participate in high school interscholastic athletics must have on file in the school, a record of a physical examination performed within the previous three (3) years. A health questionnaire shall be completed annually and could indicate the need for a physical examination prior to participation. The signature of the parent or guardian approving participation is required.
The recognition and treatment of athletes who have suffered a concussion has become a national priority. As a result of an increasing number of studies that have revealed that concussions, not properly treated, can result in permanent physical and cognitive deficits, including learning disabilities. The data also suggests that concussions can lead to the development of dementia and other long-term issues earlier than expected.
To better manage instances of concussion in our sports program, CPOMG MTB team suggests the following:
- All athletes have an ImPACT baseline assessment before the practice season starts.
- All coaches (and licensed volunteers) must complete annual training in the area of current concussion management practices and provide proof of that training to NICA licensing board. This training should include up-to-date information on the identification of concussion, the signs and symptoms associated with the injury, the risks involved with allowing athletes to continue to play while symptomatic, methods of concussion assessment, and the importance of gradual return to play practices.
- If, during a practice or race, an athlete sustains a concussion or exhibits the signs, symptoms or behaviors of a concussion, that athlete must be removed from all activity. That athlete may not return to any practice or race until he/she is evaluated by a licensed healthcare professional trained in the evaluation and management of concussion (i.e.,physician, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, or athletic trainer). The athlete and his/her parent/guardian must provide written clearance from that provider prior to the athlete being allowed to resume physical activity. The CPOMG MTB team Director/Head Coach will keep evidence of all written clearance forms on file for a period no shorter than seven (7) years.
- Once the athlete receives written medical clearance to return to physical activity, coaches at CPOMG MTB team will allow a gradual return to cycling.
Parent volunteers are a key part of any youth club because it is the most effective way to keep dues manageable for families. CPOMG MTB team does not require parents to volunteer, but it is highly encouraged. There is much to do, and having plenty of volunteers divides the workload substantially. Please refer to our webpage CPOMG.org under the volunteer tab of this website.
There are 3 types of volunteers:
NICA licensed ride volunteers:
Cycling is unique among high school sports because it requires that coaches, and parent volunteers, participate in rides with the athletes. In other words, there are some parent volunteers who are ride leaders & ride volunteers who must ride their bikes, with the athletes, to the off-road trails, to ensure safety. Coaches will run the practices, but ride volunteers provide additional oversight to keep everyone safe. This is a great way for parents to participate in a sport that their kids love, and improve their own fitness as well. CPOMG MTB team will not ride if an 6:1 athlete to coach ratio, or better, cannot be maintained. A "General License" is required for this role, which has a few simple requirements that can be done at home. Contact Head Coach for more details.
Race Day Volunteer
The experience provided to NICA student-athletes is only possible because of the contributions of dozens of volunteers at each race. On behalf of our student-athletes, our coaches, league directors and the NICA team, we thank you for devoting time from your weekend and/or parents who spend time away from spectating your racing student-athlete, in support high school mountain bike racing. Thank you also for taking the time to carefully read the guidelines for your position.
There are other roles that parents can fill that don't involve practice and race schedules. These roles can be completed on one's own personal schedule, and do not require a NICA license. Please reach out to the CPOMG Booster Club members if you would like to contribute your time and talents to assist the team this year.