First Aid Requirements

Mountain biking is a sport that involves inherent risk and often takes place in locations that responders would have trouble reaching in an emergency. NICA’s Coach Licensing Program sets high standards for first aid certifications.

 License Requirement

Level 1 

Level 2 

Level 3 

 First Aid  Not Required  Basic  WFA or equivalent required
 CPR Certification  Not Required  Required  Required

Check with your local NICA League to see what WFA, First Aid, and CPR classes are being offered. Certifications are also available through the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and the American Red Cross. If you aren’t sure if a course qualifies, contact Coach Licensing.


Advanced First Aid and Wilderness First Aid: are 8 to 16-hour training designed to prepare anyone who enters the advanced terrain or the wilderness to confidently and effectively respond to injuries and illness that can occur while on the trail. The training will focus on staying calm, making good decisions, and relevant hands-on practice, including on-the-trail scenarios with fellow classmates.

Topics covered in the WFA course include:

– Managing an accident scene out on trail
– patient assessment – shock and bleeding
– head and spinal injuries
– wound care
– musculoskeletal injuries
– heat/cold related illnesses.

WFA certified coaches will be prepared to handle an emergency involving either student athletes or fellow coaches, whether it be at the trail head, in the parking lot, or deep into a trail.

Basic First Aid: this requirement can be fulfilled only by hands-on classes, not online courses.

Topics include:

– severe bleeding
– shock
– wounds and burns
– muscle and joint injuries
– head and spinal injuries
– sudden illnesses.


A current CPR certification is required for Level 2 and Level 3 certification. Classes may be offered by your league, but any Adult CPR certification will fulfill this requirement (for example, American Red Cross offers classes in most major cities). Typically CPR Certification lasts for 1-2 years.


Self-report certifications (with expiration date) to your coach license in the NICA Pit Zone. Be sure to fill in both the CPR and first aid sections.