Summer is just around the corner and with it the new mountain bike season. The trend towards two-wheelers is unbroken - but the fast-paced sport also harbors real risks. Growing numbers of accidents encourage the Alpine Association to work on prevention. With the initiative SicherAmBerg, the Alpine Club wants to counteract this and is launching a safety initiative with a new video series.
You don't forget to ride a bike, they say. But mountain biking is more than just cycling. Whether uphill to the Alm, downhill on the single trail, with or without a motor - the sport is multifaceted. At the Alpenverein, mountain biking is the second most common summer sport after mountain hiking. Nevertheless, the risk of falling is high when biking due to the often high speeds, especially on forest roads: According to the Austrian Board of Trustees for Alpine Safety and the Alpine Police, more than 2022 mountain bikers had accidents in 860, and the number of accidents has even doubled since 2015.
"A well-maintained and functional bike, the right riding technique and a forward-looking riding style increase safety on the road," says René Sendlhofer-Schag, mountain bike coordinator at the Alpine Club. In the SicherheitAmBerg series, the Alpenverein has laid the foundation for risk-aware mountain biking with the MTB booklet and a card folder with Club Arc Alpin guidelines. "In addition, the attractive courses at the Alpine Club Academy offer extensive opportunities to train riding technique and to deal with the topic of mountain biking in more depth," Sendlhofer-Schag continues. In addition to the existing print publications, there has been an e-learning course on the subject of “bike check and equipment” since 2023.
"Especially at the start of the new bike season in spring, a service and a comprehensive check of all components on the bike and the equipment are essential. With the bike check, you can identify defects in no time at all or prevent them from becoming a problem in the first place,” Sendlhofer-Schag informs. "And if you do break down, having the right equipment is essential for a successful tour."
New video series: SicherAmBerg MTB
Bike checks and equipment are also essential topics in the brand new videos in the SicherheitAmBerg Mountainbike series. In seven informative (and quite humorous) videos, the experts from the Alpenverein show what is important for a bike check and which equipment is a must-have on tour. There are also videos on the most common bike defects. Since even the most careful bike check does not always protect against a breakdown, these short videos on the subject of "repairs on tour" show the most important steps to make the mountain bike roadworthy again without a bicycle workshop. Whether it's a broken chain, a flat tire or a torn shift cable - always with a joke and some surprises.
“The Alpine Club sees itself as representing the interests of mountain bikers. He is committed to risk-conscious, nature-friendly and socially acceptable exercise and to the creation of further legal, modern and as extensive an infrastructure as possible," says MTB coordinator Renè Sendlhofer-Schag. "The opportunity to practice this sport in our mountains is just as important to the Alpine Club as respectful cooperation and careful handling of our nature." Traveling together is the most fun.