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Mark Wallace

Mark has been riding mountain bikes since 1992. His introduction to the world of bikes was made in the wild and rugged Jefferson National Forest outside Blacksburg VA where both the climbs and descents are rowdy and hard earned. As a result, he developed a passion for technical riding of all kinds, one that was further stoked by a decade-long career racing DH in the Mid-Atlantic.

After retiring from racing, he obtained an IMBA ICP Level 2 certification and moved to Snowshoe WV full time where he worked as a Bike Instructor, Bike Mechanic and Ski Patroller. 2017 brought a relocation to Truckee CA and trading the wet roots of WV for the granite boulders and big mountain riding of the Tahoe region.

You’ll find Mark riding and teaching in Northern California and beyond!

Aaron was a great instructor!

I took a Fundamental Skill clinic last weekend and learned so much! I've been riding for a few years and felt stuck and was not improving at all. Aaron was a great instructor! Very patient and broke down everything step by step and we repeated the skills until we felt...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2017-06-05T14:15:04-07:00
I took a Fundamental Skill clinic last weekend and learned so much! I've been riding for a few years and felt stuck and was not improving at all. Aaron was a great instructor! Very patient and broke down everything step by step and we repeated the skills until we felt comfortable. I look forward to mastering the skills I learned and taking another clinic in the spring. ~Jody Hachenberger-Amend

Within one hour we we clearing a 5 foot jump easily!

Wow, a friend and I just did a one day private lesson with Richard and I can’t believe how much we learned. I’ve been riding for over 10 years but with all self taught skills. We wanted to learn fundamentals the right way and Richard took us through all of...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2017-08-19T13:52:49-07:00
Wow, a friend and I just did a one day private lesson with Richard and I can’t believe how much we learned. I’ve been riding for over 10 years but with all self taught skills. We wanted to learn fundamentals the right way and Richard took us through all of that (along with critical bike setup) and the intermediate stuff that they teach in one day plus he spent an extra hour at the end to teach us jumping which I had always been nervous about. Within one hour we we clearing a 5 foot jump easily and with confidence, we even learned to move the bike in the air on a crossed take off and landing. I think my favorite part thpugh was riding fast on the very gnarly technical descent. We will be booking up more private lessons during the summer at Big Bear. Thanks Richard you are a very good teacher! ~John U.

I definitely recommend and will do again!

Thanks Richard for this awesome clinic. Went back to basic fundamentals and through the repetitiveness of each section, it helped build confidence & speed! More drops please! ha! ha! Had fun at the same time and a great workout! I definitely recommend and will do again! ~Robbyn E.  
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2014-03-19T14:44:43-07:00
Thanks Richard for this awesome clinic. Went back to basic fundamentals and through the repetitiveness of each section, it helped build confidence & speed! More drops please! ha! ha! Had fun at the same time and a great workout! I definitely recommend and will do again! ~Robbyn E.  

G2 Bike looks forward to many more of these clinics in this area.

Ninja Mountain Bike Skills is a warm and friendly environment to learn new skills and hone ones you already know.  It's a non intimidating environment where mistakes are welcomed so corrections can be made.  I own G2 Bike is Aliso Viejo and this clinic has been ran out of the...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2014-03-19T14:32:41-07:00
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills is a warm and friendly environment to learn new skills and hone ones you already know.  It's a non intimidating environment where mistakes are welcomed so corrections can be made.  I own G2 Bike is Aliso Viejo and this clinic has been ran out of the Aliso Woods area and when I interviewed the clients they had all but great things to say.  None arrogant instructors and easy to follow steps. The biggest bang for many was meeting new area riders at their skill level, gaining confidence, and getting the bike set up and fit properly.  G2 Bike looks forward to many more of these clinics in this area.  Thanks Richard for all you do for the MTB community! ~ AJ S.  

Probably the best money I’ve spent on mountain biking …

I took the Ninja intermediate / advanced course here in Denver the weekend before last, and it was probably the best money I've spent on mountain biking in quite a while. Aaron tuned the clinic to our skills and needs, putting in extra time and attention where we needed more...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2017-05-04T08:01:31-07:00
I took the Ninja intermediate / advanced course here in Denver the weekend before last, and it was probably the best money I've spent on mountain biking in quite a while. Aaron tuned the clinic to our skills and needs, putting in extra time and attention where we needed more work and covering a wide range of skills. After mountain biking for almost 20 years, there were still missing pieces (and some bad habits) to my riding that he picked up on, explained, and then showed me how to improve, correct, and practice. Aaron was knowledgeable, patient, and progressed through skills in steps so there wasn't too much to digest at any one time. As the day progressed, he rolled them all together as we moved through different trail features, so I really got a good sense of how to put things into practice. He was also very familiar with the venue, Village Greens Park, so he knew exactly which sections to hit to practice particular skills - it was a great combination of drills and very watchful instruction, then honing those skills on real trail features. And, as we talked about with him during lunch, even experienced riders should consider the "fundamentals" course - I really had no idea that I needed work on some of the basics, like braking. I'm heavy on the rear brake just as a long-established habit - who knew? (Well, apparently Aaron did...) ~Jon Gotow

I’ve ridden mountain bikes since 1988 …

I'm a 63 y.o. Road and MTB cyclist.  I've ridden mountain bikes since 1988.  I really wish that I'd taken this course 25 years ago and I might have avoided some of the injuries I received over the years. I took only the morning first intro session at Phoenix and...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2017-06-05T14:44:17-07:00
I'm a 63 y.o. Road and MTB cyclist.  I've ridden mountain bikes since 1988.  I really wish that I'd taken this course 25 years ago and I might have avoided some of the injuries I received over the years. I took only the morning first intro session at Phoenix and I learned a great deal in a short period of time.  Richard is a very gifted cyclist and coach with excellent pedagogical skills.  The class moved quickly, but covered all the appropriate details needed to handle a bike on technical trails.  Richard had two local expert cyclists who demonstrated techniques while he provided a narrative and answered question. We had one relatively new rider who was very wary of some of the steeper, technical descents.  By the end of the class, you could actually see a significant increase in her confidence using the skills acquired in the class. I'm looking forward to doing one of Ninja's camps and I hope they are able to expand their clinics to my area (Albuquerque, NM). William J.
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Ninja Mountain Bike Skills

Great clinic. I learned really useful skills.

Great clinic. I learned really useful skills… I’m ready for another clinic with more challenging terrain. ~Beatrice D.  
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2014-03-19T14:45:33-07:00
Great clinic. I learned really useful skills… I’m ready for another clinic with more challenging terrain. ~Beatrice D.  

The course was very fluid, engaging, and I would highly recommend it.

I took the intermediate/advanced course in Balboa Park after having ridden for just over 2 years on my own. It...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2017-05-04T08:13:50-07:00
I took the intermediate/advanced course in Balboa Park after having ridden for just over 2 years on my own. It covered a wide breadth of skills, some of which I already felt aquatinted with and others I had little to no experience with. I found all of the material useful. I was able to improve skills I already had and was able to learn new skills. I also feel confident leaving the course that the instructors have provided all of the information for me to practice and improve outside of the course setting. The environment of Balboa Park was perfect for learning and sessioning the skills covered. The instructors were friendly, fun, and attentive to all of the participants. They spent more or less time on certain skills based on how the entire group was grasping them. They also gave individualized attention to participants that required more help with technique. The course was very fluid, engaging, and I would highly recommend it. ~Alexandra Rose Brysiewicz

Mission accomplished!

My wife started mountain biking recently and while she enjoyed it, she was lacking some confidence and needed some skills....
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
5
2014-03-19T14:34:22-07:00
My wife started mountain biking recently and while she enjoyed it, she was lacking some confidence and needed some skills. I knew Richard La China from the cross country racing scene and felt confident that he and the ninja team could help out.  I bought a woman's beginner clinic for my wife and she really enjoyed the challenge and experience.  She is a better mountain biker now with much more confidence and new and improved skills. Mission accomplished! I highly recommend Richard LaChina and the ninja skills clinics for any level. I bought my wife a clinic gift card for Christmas which she will use to take the intermediate clinic. I plan on taking an advanced course to improve my cornering skills. ~ Mark T.  

Mike Sofen | Endurance Athlete

I worked with Coach Richard for the 2015 racing year, whose focus was almost entirely long distance/endurance events on mixed...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
2015-09-11T10:49:12-07:00
I worked with Coach Richard for the 2015 racing year, whose focus was almost entirely long distance/endurance events on mixed road, or gravel, or mountain biking.  Events like Dirty Devil (123 mi), the Belgian Waffle Ride (143 mi) and the Dirty Kanza 200 mile gravel race in Kansas. One of my issues with prior coaching was getting into an overtrained condition very early in the season (like May) and having terrible performance from that point forward.  Knowing this, Richard made sure to keep a close eye on my TrainingPeaks Performance chart, optimizing my training calendar to ensure adequate recovery and maximizing my builds. End result:  I had a completely successful racing year with no overtraining symptoms at all, knocking an hour off my prior year’s BWR time, and feeling much stronger on the bike than I’ve felt in a long time.  This is really good stuff. Aside from the technical and racing aspects, Richard is the most delightful guy to work with – funny, humble, empathic and engaged with his clients.  That, plus his tremendous depth of experience as both a racer and a coach, provide a cacoon of support.  He’s out there doing it with us, he’s volunteering his time all over the place, and he really cares about doing the right thing. That’s three thumbs up in my book! ~Mike Sofen

Heidi Amundson | Cat 3 XC

1st Place AG Cat 3 XC California State Championship (2014) Fireroad 60k AG Winner (2014) 5th Place AG Series Overall...
Ninja Mountain Bike Skills
2015-09-11T10:30:29-07:00
1st Place AG Cat 3 XC California State Championship (2014) Fireroad 60k AG Winner (2014) 5th Place AG Series Overall XC  US / Kenda Cup (2014) 1st Place AG Series Overall Beginner Women XC Racers and Chasers (2012) Richard’s passion for cycling is inspiring. You only need to spend a short amount of time with him to feel energized by his engaged and focused approach. Whether your goal is to simply increase your fitness, do a multi-day bike tour, or even win a race series, Richard will help you get there. Before Richard started coaching me, I had never ridden more than 20 miles and had never stood on a podium for a cycling event. Now, a year later, I have completed a 4 day, 400 mile tour and placed in numerous races. Thank you Coach Richard!
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Ninja Mountain Bike Skills