PMBIA Association Announces Partnerships with Whistler Mountain Bike Park, IMBA Canada and CASI

Feb 12, 2017
by PMBIA  
Following our tradition of working with and building long term, industry partnerships, the Professional Mountain Bike Instructor Association (PMBIA) is proud to announce official relationships with Whistler Mountain Bike Park, IMBA Canada and the Canadian Association of Snowboard Instructors (CASI). After 11 years of PMBI Courses, the PMBI Association has been working tirelessly to increase the standards, consistency, and availability of mountain bike instructors courses, worldwide. These partnerships and collaborations further solidify the PMBIA's position as the industry leading standard, as we continue to develop and build our internationally available programs, with the best people in the mountain bike and instructor training industries.


While the PMBIA has been offering its Level 1 Instructor Courses in the Whistler Valley for many years, 2017 will see all courses also offered in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, as the PMBIA becomes the official mountain bike instructor certification for Whistler Blackcomb.

"Over the years, PMBIA has developed an excellent curriculum that aligns well with the needs of our Bike School. We’re excited to work with the PMBIA as our official certification provider for the mountain bike school and look forward to the potential this relationship brings to the Whistler Mountain Bike Park." Rob McSkimming, Whistler Blackcomb Vice President, Business Development.

ZEP Mountain Bike Camps
Paul Howard, PMBIA Technical Director, during a level two Course in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. The course covers extensive training for instructors to develop the technical skills of advanced riders.

"Since we began offering PMBI courses in Whistler over ten years ago, our goal has always been to help unite the mountain bike instructor training industry with a stronger, more relevant and professional, global certification. Higher quality training, more consistent instructor standards and worldwide availability. Signing with Whistler Mountain Bike Park, the best bike park in the world, is a natural fit for the world's leading mtb instructor certification.

As the PMBIA continually develops its programs and course content through its Advisory Committee, Course Conductors and Board of Directors, this relationship with Whistler Mountain Bike Park provides us with another superior resource to draw from, to ensure our programs are as strong and effective as possible." Paul Howard, Technical Director, PMBI Association.

PMBI Level 1 Course
Darren Butler, PMBIA Assistant Technical Director, training candidates on a Level 1 course in the North Shore.

"It is very exciting to be partnering the PMBIA and the global leader, Whistler Mountain Bike Park. PMBIA's long time goal of building an industry-wide standard for Instructor Certifications around the world reaches a new milestone with this relationship. For over ten years, we have been working tirelessly to get all of the bike parks, commercial operators and associations to come on board and support this cause and vision and Whistler Mountain Bike Park signing a partnership agreement with the PMBIA, is another big step. In conjunction with our recent partnership with IMBA Canada, this is a sign of great things to come in Canada and around the world!" Darren Butler, Assistant Technical Director, PMBI Association.

Paul amp Darren taking a lap in the Whistler Bike Park on a rare day off
PMBIA Technical Directors, Paul and Darren, enjoying a rare, free lap in Whistler Mountain Bike Park

Whistler Mountain Bike Park's network of green and blue trails, along with their skills centres, provide the ideal environment to learn how to mountain bike for the first time, or for any rider to push their skills to the next level. Naturally, this also provides a perfect environment to train prospective instructors and guides.

“Having PMBIA as the official certification body for Whistler Mountain Bike Park is a natural progression for the Association. PMBIA is the clear leader in MTB certification courses in Canada and beyond; what better match for the number one MTB destination in the world. The PMBIA product is a comprehensive and streamlined approach to teaching mountain biking to the public; all the years of tweaking the content has produced a product that simply works every time, with riders of all abilities.” Luc Belanger, Manager, Snow School and Summer Programming, Blue Mountain Resorts LP, Ontario.

credit www.timhailwoodphotography.com
PMBIA level one courses are offered almost every weekend in Whistler Valley through May and June, and throughout the season. Level one courses will now also be available in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park.

"Whistler Mountain Bike Park is the most talked about and ridden bike park in the world. This relationship with PMBIA will undoubtedly benefit both parties. It's been great to see the success of PMBIA in Australia and New Zealand since they starting running courses here over six years ago. Combined with the fact that there's so many Aussies and Kiwis living in Whistler each summer, this new partnership will help further cement PMBIA's position in the Southern Hemisphere, as the leading instructor certification." Shannon Rademaker, Owner, Head Coach, Oz Gravity, Australia.

PMBI Level 1 Queenstown New Zealand
A great group on a PMBIA level one in Queenstown, New Zealand, in 2013. Other PMBIA locations in New Zealand include Christchurch, Nelson, Wellington, and Rotorua, in addition to multiple locations throughout Australia.


The team behind the PMBIA have enjoyed many conversations with IMBA Canada about all things mountain biking, for over a decade. Both organizations share a mutual respect and passion for building mountain biking in Canada. In 2016, IMBA Canada was proud to announce the establishment of an integral partnership with the Professional Mountain Bike Instructor Association as its recognized Instructor, Guide, and Ride Leader training partner.

"IMBA Canada is excited to partner with the PMBIA, whose dedication to setting the bar for an internationally recognized instructor certification method will help strengthen riding communities across Canada, by lowering the barrier of entry to the sport and helping make it safer for both riders and instructors. We are pleased to be coordinating with PMBIA instructors across Canada to assist in the delivery of select Ride Guide certifications in partnership with Parks Canada, helping communities run safe and challenging group rides." AJ Strawson, Field Programming Manager, IMBA Canada

PMBI Level 3 Development Forum pic Logan Swayze bikeparkphotos.com
The PMBIA Level 2 course in Whistler Mountain Bike Park, training the likes of World Cup Legends, Chris Kovarik and Claire Buchar in 2011. All PMBIA Courses will be available in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park for 2017.


A Memorandum of Understanding has been developed between the Canadian Association of Snowboard Instructors (CASI) and the Professional Mountain Bike Instructor Association (PMBIA) in the interest of exploring opportunities to share and collaborate on common initiatives related to instructor education, training, and certification. Through strategic dialogue, these organizations will consider opportunities for future collaboration that will contribute and support each other’s mission and mandate.

"CASI is known as the largest and finest snowboard instructor training body in the world, so the PMBIA is proud and honoured to be officially collaborating with them. It was incredibly encouraging to see there were many fundamental similarities between some of our materials when I began working with CASI, all those years ago. CASI has been around for over twenty years, so the organization has a depth of knowledge and experience that we don't have yet in the mountain bike industry. Being able to draw from this knowledge while also being able to return the favour with our experiences and expertise in the mountain bike industry, is a win-win for both organizations." Paul Howard, PMBIA Technical Director.

PMBI Association Announces Partnerships with Whistler Mountain Bike Park IMBA Canada amp CASI
Jeff's the National Technical Coordinator of CASI and also a past BC Bike Race Competitor. PMBIA and CASI collaborating together is great news for both snowboarding and mountain biking.

"Providing high quality snowboard instructors to the snowboard industry has been CASI's focus for the past 23 years. It is this goal of delivering the industry's best training and certification programs that we share with the PMBIA. Having the opportunity to share and exchange methodologies will only help to elevate the skill level of both mountain bike and snowboard instructors overall, and continue to enhance and improve the programs that we deliver." Jeff Chandler, National Technical Coordinator, Canadian Association of Snowboard Instructors

PMBI Association Announces Partnerships with Whistler Mountain Bike Park IMBA Canada amp CASI
An excerpt from the 2016 PMBIA Reference Guide looking at the movements behind active Pressure Control when pumping.


After training over 600 instructors worldwide in 2016 alone, the PMBIA Association is excited to announce nearly 100 courses in over 8 countries for 2017. Although based in Whistler, B.C., the PMBIA Association offers courses throughout Canada, USA, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile, Singapore, Denmark and Japan. The international course schedule continues to grow as courses and venues are continually added and can be viewed on our website at www.pmbia.org

The PMBIA Member-Based Pro-Deal Program is an industry first, and we're excited to be adding new Pro-Deal Partners for 2017, with EVOC and Transition Bikes joining the program. EVOC packs will be available exclusively to PMBIA members on our secure Members Store from May, this year. Transition Bikes Pro-Deals will be available to Level 2 Instructors only and upon approval of a Transition Bike Company representative. Details to apply will be in our PMBIA Members Area. Other Pro-Deal partners include Five Ten, MRP (available to PMBIA members, worldwide), Troy Lee Designs and Vorsprung Suspension.

PMBIA would like to thank all our Pro-Deal partners in providing our members with the support they need to perform their jobs of teaching and guiding, to the best of their abilities, with the best equipment available.

Another fun group on their Level 1 course.
Another international group visiting PMBIA in Whistler for their Level 1 course. Fun times with great people!


The PMBI Association is the not-for-profit, governing body for mountain bike Instructor certification courses, within the mountain bike industry. The PMBI Association trains and certifies mountain bike instructors and guides to effectively teach mountain bike riding skills in both cross country and downhill environments, while guiding students safely on varying degrees of technical terrain.The PMBI Certifications are the most widely available and recognized certifications courses in the world today.


Ride Guide - One day, Group Ride Leader Course

Level 1 - Three day, Beginner to Intermediate Instructor Course
Level 2 - Four day, Advanced Instructor Course
Level 3 - Five day, Expert Instructor Course

Junior Instructor - Two day, Instructor Course for 14-16yr olds

Affiliate - One day, "Crossover" Course for current IDP & IMBA Instructors
Refresher - One day, Level 1 Refresher/Update Course
Refresher 2 - Two day, Level 2 "Crossover" Course for current IDP Level 2 & 3 Instructors

For full details on courses and our international schedule, please visit our website

PMBIA website | www.pmbia.org
PMBIA Facebook, Instagram, Twitter | @pmbiassociation

“To deliver one united and globally accepted, professional instructor and guides certification standard to the mountain bike industry, while promoting the profession of mountain bike instruction & guiding, and the sport of mountain biking overall. Ultimately, our goal is to get more people on mountain bikes by improving the standards of instruction and guiding within mountain biking, making the sport safer and easier to teach and to learn for new and current riders alike.”

MENTIONS: @zeptechniques | Endless Biking | @WhistlerMountainBikePark | @TransitionBikeCompany | @troyleedesigns | @evocsports | @FiveTen | MRP | @VorsprungSuspension

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  • 15 1
 Having had the chance to take a PMBI course a few years back, nothing but good things to say about the level of professionalism and the depth of thought regarding riding technique and instruction that these guys have brought to the table. Great to see WB on board - when Whistler Blackcomb (operators of the largest snow school and largest MTB school in North America) decide to adopt your approach over the certification system that they developed themselves, that really highlights exactly how well constructed the PMBI curriculum is. It may not seem that interesting at face value, but seeing the way the PMBI guys provide riders with understanding of technique, well beyond "this is correct and that is wrong", by helping people understand the pros and cons of different aspects really demonstrates how thoroughly they have analysed literally every movement you may make on a bike.

It goes without saying that we are stoked to be able to support active PMBIA members through the pro-deal program as well!
  • 5 1
 Looking forward to taking the Level 1 course this season with Darron. Heard nothing but great comments from previous participants. Congrats on the new partnership agreements, a great way to improve connectivity and exposure of the program.
  • 5 2
 Simply the best instructor course for MTB schools world wide. What PMBIA has learned from the bike industry over the years as well as the ski and snowboard industry has allowed them to package a product that is familiar and effective for many 4 season resorts and riding centers. Many of the course conductors were or still are involved in teaching other sports and bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with candidates on course. Win Win for PMBIA and WBP; no question.
  • 4 1
 This is big news! The gold standard of Mountain Bike Instructor training is now officially partnered with the gold standard of Bike Parks. It would be great to see Cycling Canada adopt this as the standard for the outdated NCCP mountain bike coaching courses.
  • 2 1
 Great news! I am amazed at the level of dedication and excellence of PMBI and this is a huge step towards a quality standard of mtb coaching. The future of the sport will be better for it.
  • 2 2
 So the guides have to pay for another course out of their own pocket again when they already don't make much? While everyone's acting so positive about the new curriculum, they don't realize bike guides have already paid for courses, and it's tough to make a living as a guide. Guides love what they do - does that mean part of their small income should go towards another course? Vail, an American company comes in and buys WB - hoses all the local guides with new fees, rules, insurance, and other BS. It's a load of bollocks, but the guides will do what they have to.
  • 3 2
 There are avenues available to get valid training from another course to get updated to PMBIA so it's not huge undertaking, just an opportunity to get updated training that's being accepted all over the world.

Just an FYI, Vail purchase had nothing to do with this, it's been in the works for years.

  • 2 0
 Anyone already certified via the existing WB program will do a 1 day affiliate course for a small membership fee. Courses shouldn't be viewed as a burden, any good coach can learn something new from other profesionals.
  • 1 0
 I understand where you're coming from. Try to look at it this way. As a PMBIA certified instructor you are not only upgrading your qualifications and also having them recognised world wide but protecting your future opportunities for employment. Believe me you will benefit from undertaking a course under their curriculum.
  • 1 0
 Before hand, whistler ran their own program to certify instructors in the bike park. Will all those instructors need to get their PMBIA level 1 now?
  • 2 1
 Yes but we've made it very easy to get cerification updated to PMBI. If your IDP training is valid it's a very easy update and won't require a full PMBI course.

I hope the info helps!

  • 6 7
 instructing (MTB, ski, board) is just a huge circle jerk. Someone needs to come up with the UBER of hiring instructors so that they can make more than $12/hr off a $120 private lesson.
  • 3 1
 Why don't you do it? Instead of sitting around saying not very nice things about people who pour passion and commitment into something they love for the benefit of others. Sorry.
  • 4 1
 This is not an accurate statement in terms of wages etc. Just an FYI... if you are a good Instructor, you can be paid quite well.

What you are also suggesting would have uninsured Instructors out in the field working, which land managers won't allow. It would not be a safe environment for your students, that companies with protocols, insurance and general infrastructure can provide for an Instructor to work under. This infrastructure does have high costs, particularly insurance to operate in an action sport.

There's a lot more to it than some simple math....

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