Inspired by her

Whether it is to discover different summer sports while waiting for winter skiing, explore new challenges rather than sipping Aperol on a patio, or simply because it's so much fun, find out how and why this strong girl biking community makes that sport such an amazing one.

"Don't be intimidated, it isn't as crazy as it looks!"

- Christie Fitzpatrick

Photo credit: Trish Bromley

 

Name: Christie Fitzpatrick
Age: 27
Location: Whistler, Canada

When did you start Mountain Biking and why? 
2 years ago, because everyone else was doing it and I needed a new challenge! Plus, I needed a summer hobby that kept me from drinking Aperol Spritz on patios all the time.

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking? 
Don’t be intimidated, it isn’t as crazy as it looks! There are so many elements to mountain biking, and you will find the niche that you enjoy the most. For me personally, I love technical downhill trails. Some people love machine built jumps, and others love cross country (otherwise known as suffering). Keep an eye out for a second hand bike, get a knowledgeable friend or local bike mechanic to look it over, and get out exploring your local trails. And definitely wear pads!

Which Mountain Bikers inspire you?
There is a super strong, hardcore and welcoming community of female bikers here in Whistler. They all inspire me. A few would be Hailey EliseTrish Bromley and Katrina Strand.

Favorite spot: Pemberton, British Columbia. The backdrop of Mount Currie (in my photo) makes this one of my favourite places to ride. Also, it’s steep and loose!

Favorite Norrøna outfit: Fjora flex1 Heavy Duty Shorts in arcadia/indigo night with the matching Fjora Wool T-Shirt!

Instagram Account: @gnarstie – give me a follow!

fjørå
T-Shirt
The fjørå wool T-shirt is a light mountain bike shirt made in a wool/synthetic mix perfect for all-year biking.

fjørå
flex1 Heavy Duty Shorts
The fjørå flex1 heavy duty Shorts are our most durable mountain bike shorts.

"Finding some buddies to go shred with is always a little daunting when you are starting out, but have no fear, mountain bikers are a friendly bunch!"

- Francesca Pioli

Name: Francesca Pioli (AKA Frankie) 
Age: 29
Location: Chamonix, France

When did you start Mountain Biking and why? 
I think I was 23, I was definitely a late starter. I was living in the Dyfi area of Wales which is a mecca for mountain biking and I was looking for a sport I could do while the surf wasn’t on. Turns out I love biking too.

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking? 
Well obviously, get yourself a bike and get some protection! Finding some buddies to go shred with is always a little daunting when you are starting out, but have no fear, mountain bikers are a friendly bunch! I would recommend having a look on Facebook for some local mountain biking groups or ask at your local bike shop if there are any meetings or group rides in your area. Mountain biking is great because it’s so easy for people of different abilities to ride together, it’s such a sociable sport! It is very rare to feel like you are waiting for anyone at the bottom because you are usually talking about the descent you just rode and full of stoke… So don’t feel under pressure… biking is all about having fun with friends. 

Which Mountain Bikers inspires you?
Danny Hart, mainly because of the crazy commentary on one of the downhill world cup events, he was wild! I would have to say Racheal Atherton, partly because she is a Dyfi local and was super encouraging when I started out and obviously because of her commitment to mountain biking, after so many injuries she is still charging and winning. This will sound cheesy, but I am probably most inspired by the girls I have rode with, it is always awesome seeing your mates send it and shred and show you what is possible, it is motivation and makes me want to ride even more. 

Favorite spot: Finale (Italy) vs Dyfi Forest (Wales)… I think Finale wins, less rain and good pizza. 

Favorite Norrøna outfit: Fjørå flex pants, Fjørå wool T-shirt

Instagram Account: @frankiepioli_physio

fjørå
flex1 Pants
The fjørå flex1 Pants were initially designed for mountain biking but soon grew to be a favorite for a variety of outdoor activities due to its great functionality.

fjørå
T-Shirt
The fjørå wool T-shirt is a light mountain bike shirt made in a wool/synthetic mix perfect for all-year biking.

"Remember it’s not a male or female sport, just a sport! We're all friends on the mountain and it's for everyone, don't be afraid to ask for help."

- Helena Werner

Name: Helena Werner
Age: 35
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden

When did you start Mountain Biking and why?
I´ve been skiing every winter since I was two and the summers was always a long wait to go back to the mountains. I needed a sport in the mountains during summer and hiking didn´t really do it for me. A friend of mine lend me a downhill bike for a ride 11 years ago and I´ve been hooked on mountain biking ever since! Up until four years ago I was a proper park rat and refused to pedal uphill, but moving to the mountains in the Lake district in UK (without lifts) I learned to earn my turns on a trail bike and fell in love with that too!

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking?
If you have a friend that rides, ask if you can tag along to get started. If you rather take classes, bike parks usually have private coaches or courses for girls only, a good start to find riding buddies! And remember it’s not a male or female sport, just a sport! We´re all friends on the mountain and it´s for everyone, don´t be afraid to ask for help.

Which Mountain Bikers inspires you?
Anyone who loves riding and a shows good sportsmanship!

Favorite spot: Downhill: Åre bike park, Sweden
Big mountain / single track: Lake District, UK

Favorite Norrøna outfit: Fjørå flex 1 pants and any of Norrønas long sleeve wool base layers, they both last so long that it´s almost boring, I never need new ones.

Other comments: In my articles you can read about mental training; like how to perform under pressure, overcome fears and deal with stress. And also about vanlife, my trail dog Luci, and living simply.

Instagram Account: @helena_werner

fjørå
Equaliser Lightweight Long Sleeve
The fjørå equaliser lightweight Long sleeve is a lightweight, breathable biking shirt with great moisture transportation.

fjørå
flex1 Pants
The fjørå flex1 Pants were initially designed for mountain biking but soon grew to be a favorite for a variety of outdoor activities due to its great functionality.

"Remember it’s not a male or female sport, just a sport! We're all friends on the mountain and it's for everyone, don't be afraid to ask for help."

- Helena Werner

Name: Joline Johansson
Age: 33
Location: Gran, 1 hour outside Oslo

When did you start Mountain Biking and why?
I tested mountain biking when i was around 9. I hated it and a wanted a bike with suspension and disc brakes like the other kids at the cross country race. But my parents sad no, I had to ride more before I could get a new bike. So I stoked with my pony for five more years. And then I got the chance to try downhill biking in Crans Montana, Switzerland and I loved it! So when the rest of my family was in to road biking, I was enjoying just going downhill.

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking?
First of all, just try it! If you don`t have a bike, rent one and start with easy trails just to get a feeling for it. I would recommend investing in a mtb coach just to get some useful tips.

Which Mountain Bikers inspires you? 
Casy Brown for always going big and inspire female riders and Cecile Ravanel, for always riding powerfull and excellent technical skills.

Favorite spot: My favorite spot is Barlindåsen in Nordmarka, Oslo. If I got the chance to have to favorite sports the outer one is Nesbyen.

Favorite Norrøna outfit: I love the fjørå pants, it keeps my legs looking okey and not scratch from all the riding. And when the sun is out, the guns is out in a Fjørå wool T-shirt

Other comments: I`m super happy to see all the new female mountain bikers in Norway the last few years. Mountain biking is growing, and the female riders are taking their space in the cycling community, love it!

Instagram Account: @jolinejohansson

fjørå
flex1 Pants
The fjørå flex1 Pants were initially designed for mountain biking but soon grew to be a favorite for a variety of outdoor activities due to its great functionality.

fjørå
T-Shirt
The fjørå wool T-shirt is a light mountain bike shirt made in a wool/synthetic mix perfect for all-year biking.

Girls biking - Minna

Name: Minna Riihimaki
Age: 47 
Location: Chamonix, France

When did you start Mountain Biking and why? 
I started mountain biking on cross country when I was very young, around age of 9, in Finland.  My parents used to go running in the forest on 4×4 tracks and I went with them but on my bike in order to be able to keep up.  My biking evolved with the technology from X-country to DH racing in European Cups and now mainly enduro biking but I still love DH tracks.  

Why?  Mountain biking is like skiing for me.  The sensation of flow, speed and glide are incredible.  It is about exploring and discovering new places with friends, sharing the experiences and improving skills.  What a great way to stay healthy and fit in a fun way.  

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking?
Mountain biking is like all other technical and potentially risky activities, the best is to start in good company, conditions and progress gradually. It is important to get familiar with the terrain and know how the bike will react in different situations.  Training with patience is the key, with the experience, what seemed difficult in the beginning will ease off and soon feel confortable and fun.  

Girls can be just as good as boys and ride with style and smile, everyone starts from scratch! 

Which Mountain Bikers inspires you?
Danny McAskill of course with his incredible talent and creativity. 

Greg Minnaar is an example of how to stay on the top of the game for long. 

My friend Louise Paulin (from Sweden) who is the WC in enduro World Series in masters category, mom of 2 children and a bike guide in Finale Ligure, Italia. 

Favorite spot: It is difficult to name one favorite, it depends on what I am expecting to do.  
For DH trails, Morzine is on the top of the list. It has world class technical and steep tracks and many well shaped flowy tracks with jumps. Something for everyone and every level.  
Finale Ligure is the mecca of easy access enduro trails, with the good Italian coffee, ice cream, pizza and beach dolce vita life. 
For variable alpine style enduro biking with a lot of vertical meters, my favorite spots are Chamonix, Aosta Valley and the Dolomites. 

Favorite Norrøna outfit: Fjora flex1 Heavy Duty shorts, Fjora Equaliser shirt, Norrøna singlet, Fjora Infinium gloves, Fjora socks and Skibotn 15L pack. 

Other comments: Mountain biking requires a considerable investment in material.  Of course renting is a good option for the first times but later I highly recommend buying quality equipment that will last long and you don’t need to worry about repairing after every outing.  This goes for the bike, protection and the clothing.  

Instagram Account: @minnamaki

fjørå
flex1 Heavy Duty Shorts
The fjørå flex1 heavy duty Shorts are our most durable mountain bike shorts.

fjørå
Equaliser Lightweight Long Sleeve
The fjørå equaliser lightweight Long sleeve is a lightweight, breathable biking shirt with great moisture transportation.

norrøna
Singlet
The soft and sleek Norrøna Single is a sew-free racerback singlet offering complete workout functionality in a minimalistic package.

fjørå
Infinium Gloves
The fjørå Infinium gloves are developed for biking in cold and dry conditions.

fjørå
Light Weight Merino Socks
The fjørå light weight Merino Socks are developed for biking activities. They have an above the ankle cut and are made of a soft and comfortable wool mix.

skibotn
15L Pack
The skibotn Pack 15L is a very durable freeride mountain bike pack with great ventilation in the carrying system and lots of storage. A removable back protector can be bought separately.

Name: Natalie Randall
Age: 32
Location: Monticello, Utah

When did you start Mountain Biking and why? 
My interest in Mountain Biking primarily took off when I moved out West for University from the East Coast. I was primarily a roadie and recreationally participated in triathlons, my transition to a mountain bike was for a small “off-road” triathlon. I started expanding into bikepacking around 7 years ago with my interest in multi-sport, using a bike to access other human-powered activities like climbing, rappelling, hiking, skiing, and packrafting spots was appealing. A jack of all trades and master of none.

What are your best tips for girls who want to start mountain biking? 
Find a local group of ladies who like to get out and tag along with them, they’ll be stoked to have you join them! Another great option is incorporating it into your next vacation. Pick a destination and hire a local guide who can also help you master skills while exploring an area you’ve been eyeing. 

Which Mountain Bikers inspires you? 
I’m always inspired by ladies who’ve been able to find balance in their lives of riding, work, family, and other interests. This has particularly grown after having my son a couple years ago. A few ladies I pull inspiration from include: Rebecca Rusch, Liz Sampey, and Hannah Barnes.

Favorite spot: The unknown excitement of any new (to me) trail – but overall Utah is hard to beat; alpine in the summer and desert in the winter.

Favorite Norrøna outfit: The fjørå flex lightweight shorts have been my go to with warmer and less predictable spring weather. Great ventilation and quick to dry with weather transitions I experience mid-ride.

Other Commnts:

  • Favorite Trail Food: Haribo Gold Bears
  • Current Ride: Revel Rascal

Instagram Account: @Roamrandall@Roamindustry

fjørå
flex1 Lightweight Shorts
The fjørå flex1 lightweight Shorts are lightweight and highly breathable shorts designed for mountain biking.

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