Direct Entry Level 3 Pathway

Direct Entry Level 3 Pathway

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The Direct Entry Pathway is a route for experienced mountain bike leaders who hold qualifications from other providers to become British Cycling Level 3 Mountain Bike Leaders through the British Mountain Bike Leadership Scheme.

This route accounts for your accredited prior learning (APL) and prior experience whilst ensuring that you are competent against both the Level 2 and Level 3 Mountain Bike Leadership criteria. This pathway upholds the high consistent standards that British Cycling assures in both their leaders and in course provision whilst supporting our educational philosophy of supporting learners to achieve success. Leaders qualified through this pathway can also access member benefits including leader insurance through British Cycling.

What do I need to apply?

Those holding the following mountain bike leader qualifications can access the Direct Entry Pathway:

  • CyclingUK Advanced Mountain Bike Leader
  • MBCUK Technical Trail Leader or higher
  • MIAS Mountain Bike Leader Level 2 or higher

You should also hold a suitable first aid qualification (minimum: 2 day Outdoor First Aid certificate) and undertake the safeguarding course (provided as part of your MTB Leadership registration) or provide evidence of equivalent experience.

In addition, you should have extensive riding and leadership experience. For riding this should more than fulfil the Level 2 requirements of 15 rides, most of which are in natural environments (not trail centres) and the Level 3 requirements of at least 30 quality days in mountain and / or technically demanding environments. See the MTB Leader Logbook for more details on what constitutes a quality day.

In addition, experience of leading groups should be substantial including a variety of group types and locations within the bounds of your existing qualification.

Where you don’t fulfil the pre-requisites for the Direct Entry Pathway, we highly recommend the Level 2 Pathway which may cover some areas you feel you know but explains what the requirements of the Level 2 Award are and how to achieve these whilst tailoring delivery around your experience.

What do I need to do before starting the pathway?

Before embarking on this pathway, we recommend you speak directly with a Level 3 Provider to ensure your qualifications and experience align with the demanding requirements to embark on the Level 3 Award.

You will also need to talk with us and provide copies of your relevant qualifications and training so we can allocate you to the Direct Entry Pathway.

The Pathway

STAGE 1: Hold a suitable qualification and have substantial experience in MTB leading and riding

Fulfil the course pre-requisites as above.

Talk to a Level 3 Provider about the pathway and if it is right for you.

STAGE 2: Register on the British Cycling MTB Leadership pathway and provide copies of certificates

Register Here

Send your MTB Leadership, first aid and safeguarding certificates to  Make sure you include your membership number. At the same time advise of your intent to undertake the Direct Entry Pathway and which provider you have agreed this with.

STAGE 3: Undertake Level 3 Training

Book a Level 3 Training course with your chosen provider.

Your individual review and action plan at the end of this course will guide you on the next steps and timescales according to your experiences and skills, and future opportunities.

STAGE 4: Undertake a Level 2 Assessment

Book and attend a Level 2 Assessment with your chosen provider to ensure that your baseline competencies are proven, and your British Cycling leader insurance can apply.

STAGE 5: Where successful, qualify as a British Level 2 Mountain Bike Leader

Achieve the Level 2 Award. Once all the relevant paperwork has been submitted and approved, you will be issued with your certificate and operate as a Level 2 MTB Leader.

STAGE 6: Undertake a Level 3 Assessment

Once the consolidation of your training and leadership is completed, book and attend a Level 3 Assessment with your chosen provider.

STAGE 7: Where successful, qualify as a British Level 3 Mountain Bike Leader

Achieve the Level 3 Award.  Once all the relevant paperwork has been submitted and approved, you will be issued with your certificate and operate as a Level 3 MTB Leader.

Contact British Cycling regarding the MTB Leadership Award

If you feel you might need extra support to undertake a training course or assessment because of a physical or learning disability, please contact the Mountain Bike Leadership Team ahead of booking. We can then discuss any reasonable adjustments that would support you to become a Mountain Bike Leader.

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