About Us

Why choose Dirtschool?

We have one simple ethos at Dirt School. To make sure your coach has not just the paperwork but the riding credentials to match. Whether that's at the head of a terrifying trail, on the start line of a big race or even just finding your feet on the bike again after a little crash, we've been there. It's this feet-on-the-ground and real world experienced approach to mountain bike coaching that's earned us respect at the top. Whether that's writing books and developing our own mountain bike tuition techniques or coaching World Champions.

Our work has taken us all over the world and we have been fortunate enough to work in partnerships that have given us great insight. The ability to fully deconstruct our sport and develop an in depth coaching knowledge, based not just in textbooks, but on clear results from our work with psychologists, physiologists, top riders and people around the world. Making you have more fun is our passion not just our jobs.

Whether it's standing trackside at the World Championships, or trailside on the Blue Route at Glentress, we’re working with riders. Come and join us, whatever you ride we'll make this amazing sport better for you. We promise.

Andy Barlow - Level 3 Coach

Andy Barlow joined Chris as a partner in Dirt School in 2009. His motivation to help as many people as possible get the most out of their time on their bikes made him the perfect match. A well celebrated rider himself, Andy adds his pragmatic attention to detail, his excellent riding ability and his love of all things cycling into his mountain bike coaching.

Other Stuff

  • Dirt School partner
  • Scottish and GB XC mountain bike Champion 2009
  • Trans Scotland 07 Winner (Solo)
  • Scottish Junior Downhill mountain bike Champion 1997
  • British Cycling MTB Coach qualified
  • BASP Emergency Outdoor first aid qualified
  • MBLA Mountain Bike Leader
Janey Kennedy - Level 3 Coach

Janey is one of our full-time coaches and is also in charge of our marketing and accounts. She’s an exercise addicted mini terminator who never stops and is a regular podium contender on the Scottish Enduro scene. She loves encouraging people to improve their riding and gives them confidence in what they can achieve and finds it very rewarding when others combat fears or achieve their goals. With an analytical mind and keen eye for detail, she is a great addition to our line up of coaches.

Other Stuff

  • MBLA Mountain Bike Leader
  • Mountain Leader
  • Outdoor First Aid Qualified
  • 1st Class BSc Hons in Mathematics
Chris Ball - Founder

The founder of Dirt School, Chris has roots in sport science, competition and international governing body level work. When he founded Dirt School his ethos was simple. He wanted to pass on all that he had learnt, not just from riding and competing but from the psychologists, physiologists and coaches he works with. But, more importantly, he wanted to pass this on to every rider, through people who had the experience and skill level themselves.

Other Stuff

  • Managing Director of the Enduro World Series and the Enduro MTB Association
  • Founder and National Coach of the Scottish Downhill Academy (2006 - present)
  • UCI Gravity Sports Coordinator and UCI Technical Delegate ('08 - '12)
  • British Cycling and Scottish Cycling DH coach
  • Author: The Manual - Mountain Biking and MBR Skills expert
  • BSc Hons Sports Science
  • MBLA Mountain Bike Leader
  • British Cycling MTB Coach Qualification
  • BASP Emergency Outdoor First Aid qualified