Mountain Biking In The 50s?

So much has changed since the 50s but at least we still sometimes eat dinner in front of the TV. Welcome back to my blog and this post will be a summative post telling you all about my most recent project where we tried to figure out how Canadian life has developed after WW2 and it wouldn’t be a project of mine if I didn’t find a way to bring mountain biking into it. We did this all while trying to answer our driving question for this project which was, How did Canadian life develop after WW2

My ‘History Of MTB’ presentation 1

The first time bikes were ridden off road was in the late 1800s as a way of transportation by the US military. This soon caught on and other countries started to try this as they required much less maintenance than transporting troops by horse or car. Some companies started to build real bikes dedicated to this called military bikes which were heavy but strong After the military used these heavy bikes, nothing really happened to them until the 70s when a group of teenagers in Marin county took their balloon tire bikes off-road. They started biking down Mt Tamalpais and this soon caught on with some of the locals and road bikers Since the beginning of mountain biking, a lot changed from then to when I started around 2010. The bikes had changed a lot and we even had suspension on our bikes which only arrived in the 90s. Now that we had suspension to help us handle tougher terrain, it meant that some people started a trend in mountain biking called freeride. This started in North Vancouver, British Columbia and soon became very popular, at around the time that I started to mountain bike this era of freeride started to die off and racing became With mountain biking gaining more recognition, this is pushing the industry to evolve their bikes to become the best. With many people bored in quarantine due to COVID-19 the bike industry is now growing faster than ever with every bike company completely sold out of bikes. This is now quite frustrating and difficult right now as people can’t buy replacements to broken parts or even new bikes altogether but this will definitely help mountain biking as a sport in the long run. 

Podcast Planner Template

Something which you’ve probably seen before, is all the planning we make for projects like this. I’ve used this specific planner for all the 8 podcast episodes I’ve done this year and even in previous years for projects we’ve made for exhibitions have had similar planning to this.  2

We do all this planning beforehand for the exact problem I ran into when making this episode. I originally planned to interview Julien Hansel who is a teacher at Seycove Secondary and a mountain biker. I had to change my plan last second as he wasn’t available to do the interview in the end


It is without a doubt that life on earth is always changing very fast. There are certain times in history when this change slows down, and speeds up. The 1950s were one of these times in history when everything is changing very fast. This was due to many variables and the most major event to force this change was WW2

After WW2, many hadn’t had a normal way of living and in the 50s is when many were finally settling down in suburban communities trying to enjoy life. Since WW2 was essentially a race to get the technological upper hand on whoever was on the opposing side. There was new knowledge about how technology worked which lead to many new innovations which were replacing old technology, such as many kitchen appliances and some major lifestyle changing inventions. A great example of this was the first commercial TV which almost completely replaced the radio and with that came many new opportunities to connect with the consumers.

This was when the term “Nuclear Family” really got more defined as TV shows like ‘Cinderella’ made a standard for women to try to follow. More standards like this were being made as people wanted to follow what they assumed the standard was. A nuclear family now turned into what every family strived for which was a couple with two dependent children living in a suburban household with the mom having to spend everyday making sure the house is in perfect condition for anytime there might be guests visiting. Every family wanted to be seen as the perfect family and so every mother was almost forced to do this while the dad was at work and the children were either at school or with their friends.

The 50s were still a tough time to live as many were still recovering from the war but the support given and all the new inventions allowed families to start a new life in a suburban neighbourhood, and nuclear families all around were greatly affected by developments in technology and as a society.

If you want to see a different perspective on the History of MTB or the 50s go check out Owens blog

  1. This project showed my Discuss, Listen and speak competency as I did research and taught myself all about the beginnings of the sport and how it’s changed. After, I relayed that information in a presentation and discussed about any questions people had .
  2. Another great thing with the planner is being able to see what I’ve had to change to make a great podcast episode. This also kind of ties in to our second competency which is continuity and change. Although this is a very different way of looking at it, you can still see what has stayed the same in my script and what has changed just like how mountain biking has changed.

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