Hey my name is Glenn Richards, Im 41 years of age and I am the mountain bike skills instructor for Napier, Hawkes Bay. I remember my first mountain bike was a fully ridgid 18 speed Nomad, that was back in 1993 and at the time I was riding my bike at anytime possible. My first off road ride was a revalation, riding down steep hill sides, through rough bush tracks and at one point down a small section on the edge of a rocky waterfall (just to see if i could) - That was the turning point for me, when I made the leap from being a street commuter to a true mountain biker and I haven't looked back since. What fascinates me most about mountain biking is that it brings with it such a freedom of expression. The more skills you have the more you get out of it! Its just like good skiers or snowboarders, they get to release a bit of their creative spirit in the great outdoors and mountain biking is the same, only with a little more dirt and sweat! Mountain biking means different things to different people. For some it’s a way of keeping fit, a way of hanging out with friends, a way of getting a good dose of adrenalin, but ultimately, people are catching on to the fact that its not just a trundle along in the park. The intended uses of mountain bikes has changed and for those who are looking for a few thrills, it can be a sport that offers so much more. The great thing about the Skills Clinics is that riders actually see in real terms what mountain biking can be about. I get a real buzz and satisfaction out of seeing people achieve or progress in something they couldn’t or could sort of do before, imparting knowledge about mountain biking seems like the natural thing to do. There always is a great sense of Camaraderie, no matter what walks of life people come from, by the end of the clinics, there is that great feeling of achievement and friendship. My advice to any wannabe rider is to grab, beg or borrow a bike and come along. Choose a ride to suit your ability - and enjoy. In 2005 I spent a season riding in Canada, mainly at the famous Whistler mountain bike park. I really enjoy the gravity assisted style of riding as I get my thrills from riding fast downhill ! Its the package of adrenalin, fitness, and mental toughness that brings the enjoyment ! I also really enjoy "All Mountain" rides as I am quite happy to ride up big mountains and to do a bit of hike-a-bike to access great trails. Since Canada I have been a mountain bike guide in New Zealand for FreerideNZ. I really enjoy meeting like minded bike enthusiasts and showing them around NZs most epic trails ! I have bikes for downhill, dirt jumping, X country and all mountain adventures. As bike compontery constantly progresses I find myself glued to magazines and websites trying to keep up with the latest and greatest gear and adding them to my wishlist! Im very passionate about mountain biking and love its lifestyle, for me riding is for life ! Am happy to be with MTB Skills clinics for over 10 years now