MTB guides France with French MTB guide union
Do you love the idea of being guided by a qualified Anglophone (or insert your own native language here) MTB instructor-guide during your next trip to the French Alps? Do you hate the idea of them having to pick up soap in a French prison for their pains?
Well help is at hand in both the short and long term. The French MTB guide union, Moniteurs Cycliste Français (the MCF) and their colleagues at the European Organisation of MTB Instructor-Guides (EO-MTBInG) have organised another round of equivalence exams for European MTB guides (get in there before it’s too late!) to obtain their golden ticket to working legally in France.
Last year saw several guides successfully go through the 2 days of tests which granted them full equivalence with their French colleagues – potentially a lot easier than going through the 1200 hour qualification sat by all the French guides.
Applications will need to be submitted by March 10th for this year’s tests, (see the link at the bottom of this post) which will take place near Annecy in France from May 22-24th.
The tests will involve aspects of technical riding, skills coaching, emergency scenarios and navigation. You will need a basic conversational level of French, naturellement.
Otherwise the long term is looking even better for mountain biking instructor-guides.
EO-MTBInG and their project to create a European qualification standard for bike guides and instructors are now supported by the European Commission and look set to have over a dozen European countries signed up by this summer.
The result for bike instructor-guides will be a European licence like that issued to high mountain guides.
For the great mountain biking public the effects will be more widely felt. In the words of EO-MTBInG: French MTB Equivalence exam
In the future mountain bikers will be able to consult a single resource to find friendly, professional, expert instruction and guiding no matter where they are in Europe. Whether they’re introducing their kids to the local forest singletrack or taking their friends on the biking holiday of a lifetime, EO-MTBING will ensure they can always find the same high standards of professionalism wherever they are in Europe.
In doing so we also aim to be the catalyst for a whole new era in the profession of mountain bike instructor-guiding, with higher and more consistent levels across Europe and massively increased work opportunities in this young and exciting profession we love so much.