PMBIA Level 3 Instructor Course




The PMBI Level 3 course is for experienced instructors who want to learn more about teaching advanced to expert riders. Additionally, the course will provide the relevant tools and training to help an experienced instructor begin to transition into coaching.

The Level 3 will train instructors how to assess and develop the technical skills of riders on any terrain, up to and including black diamond and double black diamond ability levels. Instructors will also learn more about instructing vs. coaching skills, providing them with the tools necessary to either teach an expert rider on a half-day lesson, or coach someone over a weekly, monthly or even seasonal period.

This is particularly relevant for instructors who are wanting to work on long term coaching programs, including instructor training camps or race (competition) development programs, for example.

It is the aim of the PMBI Level 3 course to also complement and support existing coaching certification programs, such as those provided by the Coaching Association of Canada, to provide mountain bike coaches the full detail of information and tools they need to deliver the best possible results in their students.


  • Experienced PMBI Level 2 Instructors.
  • Experienced instructors wanting to learn more about assessing, developing and refining the skills of advanced to expert riders.
  • Experienced instructors wanting to teach on more challenging terrain and black diamond trails such as “Schleyer”, “A-line” or “Dirt Merchant” (see Whistler Bike Park).
  • Experienced instructors wishing to learn more about teaching over longer time frames, such as a multi-week rider improvement camp, or a season long race program.
  • Coaches and Instructors who wish to learn more about how to further develop the technical skills of riders and racers, to complement their physical and mental training programs.
  • Instructors wishing to learn more about the differences between instructing and coaching, and the different tools available to effectively switch between the roles, as required by the teaching situation.
  • Mountain Bike Coaching/Camp/Lesson Company Owners, Head Coaches, Race Program Coaches, Bike Park Supervisors, Instructor Trainers.


Below are some of the main examples of the riding and teaching skills required on the PMBI Level 3 course. With the Level 2 teaching and riding skills previously dialled, a Level 3 candidate should be able to confidently and consistently teach advanced riders using a variety of different instructing and coaching techniques, in any and all situations. All Performance Factors must be taken into account to effectively develop the skills of any rider, in any terrain.

Candidates are able to critically assess the skills of a student, further prioritize the skills based on the stage development for each skill, and then use a combination and/or variety of biomechanics, exercises, tasks, terrain or maneuvers to effectively address and refine each skill deficiency, in a safe and consistent manner.

Some Terrain, Riding and Teaching examples include;

  • Developing and refining the technical skills of advanced to expert riders on black diamond trails
  • Developing and refining jumping skills on trails such as “A-line” and “Dirt Merchant”
  • Developing and refining technical skills on steep, rough terrain, such as “Angry Pirate” or “Schleyer”
  • High Speed cornering in flat, off-camber & banked corners (berms)
  • Steeps, rock rolls and technical terrain with roots and rocks
  • Drop-offs with different speeds and shapes (e.g. take-off angle vs landing angle)
  • Table top and gap jumps exceeding 12ft, with different speeds and shapes
  • Advanced Maneuvers; manuals, wheelies, bunnyhops, stoppies, whips
  • Expert Guiding & Risk Management Skills through the Safety Rules, Class Management & Terrain Communication Protocols
  • Expert lesson structure integrating the IACRCV Skill Development Model to refine delivery of technical information and feedback
  • Expert teaching skills to adapt parts of the Training Wheel and IDEA Progression accordingly, to suit the specific terrain and intended outcome
  • Clear Outcome-based approach with a strong understanding of not only what the students are working on and how, but also why these techniques will ultimately benefit
  • A clear understanding of instructing vs. coaching and when to favour each approach
  • Refined explanations to deliver specific, technical concepts in a simple, easy to understand presentation
  • Refined lesson content, through an expert knowledge and technical understanding of the Skill Components within each of the Six Skills
  • Coaching to encompass all Performance Factors (Equipment, Environment, Technical, Tactical, Physical, Psychological) within each session
  • Mechanic skills: suspension set up with sag, rebound, compression (high and low) for all types of bike, bike fit, BB and headset maintenance, brake bleeding, basic wheel truing. Bike fit


  • PMBI Level 2 Mandatory, no exceptions.
  • 2 day Level 2 Trail or AIR Module. If you completed the 4 day Level 2 AIR course you would need to complete the 2 day Level 2 Trail module and vice versa. This will ensure riders have a diverse skill set for both riding and teaching, before attending the PMBI Level 3 Skills Coaching Course.
  • 5+ seasons working full time as a Mountain Bike Instructor.
  • 3+ Seasons Teaching Mountain Biking (or other sports such as snowboarding) to intermediate riders and beyond.
  • Confident riding at speed on technical and flowy, advanced to expert terrain, including green, blue, black and double black trails.
  • 40hr Wilderness First Aid (or equivalent) mandatory.
  • 80hr Wilderness First Responder Certification (or equivalent) strongly recommended, but not mandatory.
  • A minimum age of 20 is recommended for Level 3 to ensure the instructor has not only the appropriate knowledge and technical skills, but also the depth of experience (time), risk management skills and sense of responsibility required when legally responsible for students, while teaching advanced skills in potentially dangerous terrain.
  • Other instructor or coaching certifications (skiing/snowboarding) a strong asset, but not essential.


In order for candidates to successfully gain the PMBI Level 3 Skills Coach certification, they must pass the following modules:

  • Expert Riding Exam – skill assessment on blue, black and double black terrain.
  • Expert Skill Teaching Exam – 45 minute session developing and refining the technical skills of an expert student.
  • Expert Maneuver Teaching Exam – 25 minute session developing and refining the jumping and drop-off skills of an expert student.
  • Written Assessment – participants must submit a technical “How-To” article.
  • Long Term Coaching Plan Module – participants must submit a six week “Technical Skills Coaching Plan”


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