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MTBA Insurance?  What’s it all about?  Mountain Bike Australia is the peak body for mountain biking in Australia.  Their mission is to develop and promote mountain biking in Australia for the benefit and enjoyment of all.

It is a common misconception that you only need MTBA insurance if you plan on racing.  While yes Race members are insured to race in all MTB events regardless of whether it is a MTBA sanctioned club or promoter, Recreation Membership is available to those who don’t race and covers you to ride in all MTB social events nationwide.  There is even a Non-Riding option for those involved with volunteering who do not ride.

So why should I sign up?  Well firstly you get 24/7 Public Liability and Personal Accident cover for each time you are riding your bike socially, commuting or training.  So each and every time you head out on your bike you are covered.

For more information refer to the insurance webpage.

So what about Club Affiliation?  When you sign yourself up to MTBA insurance you need to affiliate yourself with a club.  Margaret River Off Road Cycling Association is affiliated with MTBA and you simply need to choose us.  This means you will pay for your MTBA membership as well as your MRORCA membership all in the one process.

But I already signed up for MRORCA membership through your website?  If that is the case then we would be more than happy to refund you your double upped membership fees, or you could simple see this as an extra donation towards the club which we will inject into more great trails and facilities for our members.

I am already signed up to MTBA but affiliated with another club?  We are a very liberal club and don’t mind if you are already affiliated with another club… simply head over to our website and become a member this way!

Why would I want to become a member?  Becoming a member with our club allows for more trail development in our region.   Not only do the funds allow for maintenance, trail building and facilities, when we go to the powers that be and show a huge amount of members on our books, they take notice and it enhances our ability in applying for grants and extra trails.

MRORCA encourages all our members to be MTBA members and insist on it for our social rides and races.  (There is always an option to sign up for a day licence or if you are really against insurance, waive your rights to have any.)

If you need any further information check out the MTBA website.

For a personal story of how MTBA helped club member Dave Berry check out the article below.


What’s the real cost of a MTB crash? Private Health-MTBA Insurance-No Cover – by Dave Berry

So we all have our own opinions on risk and reward when riding our bikes and insurance cover is another we all have different opinions on. I’d never crashed my bike hard enough to keep me from going to work and paying the bills nor have I ever had to cover the cost of surgery. So when I ploughed myself into the Karri dirt in Pemberton I had no idea what I was up for. I’m not writing this to sway anyone in any direction it’s just a true account of what the actual cost was to me for my injury and my circumstances.

So I have full private health cover, always have and yes it costs a mint. I also have a MTBA race membership for the insurance, luckily I also had plenty of sick leave at work to cover my time off to recover.

My crash consisted of me fluffing up a small double jump at speed and ploughing my head and shoulder into the lovely Karri loam during the WA Gravity Enduro race in Pemberton, on what was a bloody awesome sunny Sunday afternoon of racing. Below is the time line from crash to rolling (very slowly but rolling) on my bike again

Sunday 5th March 2017

CRASH!!!!!, trip to Pemberton hospital, got some drugs for the next 24hrs then off home (with beer) to see the GP tomorrow (thanks Nath for driving me)

Monday 6th

Seen GP in Margaret River, sent for x-rays (yup its broken good. Complete break right collar bone with 2.5cm overlap and a piece of bone floating free)

Tuesday 7th

Spoke with Public surgeon but didn’t get far, not confirmed for surgery and could not give me a time for an appointment and would get back to me.

Wednesday 8th

Hadn’t heard from public surgeon so in the arvo I rang Dr Hewitt a private surgeon in Perth. Within 10mins I had sent him a picture of my x-ray via email and had been booked in for review the next day and surgery Friday

Thursday 9th

Review in Perth with Dr Hewitt. He agreed yup broken good!

Friday 10th

Public surgeon rang to book me in for review on Monday. I had to give him the bad news, he was sacked I found someone better. Surgery done that arvo. Winning now with lots of good drugs!

Saturday 11th

Home with arm in sling and loads of pain drugs

Sunday 12th

Started moving my shoulder (had a few wines to help loosen the shoulder)

Friday 17th

1 week post-surgery I had my arm out of the sling and no pain medication. I had good but not full movement in my shoulder.

Monday 20th

1st roll out on the bike 2wks after my crash. It was slow but I was riding!

So what would my life have been like without Private Health Insurance? A Regular collar bone fracture is treated very cautiously without surgery and recovery time is around 8 weeks in a sling. Defiantly not riding a bike in 2 weeks

What it actually cost me

Total Surgeon Fees after Medicare – $1464.30, Anaesthetist Fees- $398.05, Private Hospital overnight stay- $6699.02. That’s a total of $8561.37. Now finally after years of paying the $$$$ for private health I get something back and I was only out of pocket $1379. I contacted MTBA to find out what the go was with their insurance and I was stoked to find out that I’d get a further $591.04 back from them.

So out of a possible $8561.37 bill I only paid $788.53 winning!!

I know private health insurance is expensive and not everyone can afford it but MTBA insurance is only (for me as a race membership) $129 which includes my MRORCA club fees. What would I have been up for without private health? If I was to just pay for a private surgeon! Well I’d be up for a lump sum bill of $8561.37 after Medicare and MTBA would give me back $5000. (Disclaimer this is what I understand would be the payment by MTBA I have not contacted them to find out what it would have been.)  Out of pocket $3561.37

Basically what is the insurance cover from MTBA

85% of Non-Medicare claimable costs up to $5000. Payment is for reimbursement of out of pocket expenses. So you pay then claim back through the insurance policy, if you have private health the policy will cover what your private cover didn’t pay for. If you don’t have private health cover you pay for it all then MTBA insurance pays you back 85%.

Loss of income of 85% of your income up to $500/week claimable after 28days off work.

You are covered for all riding related injuries 24hrs a day 7 days a week

Here is the link to MTBA about their insurance so have a look and make up your mind.

So I hope this gives you some insight on the risk vs reward of insurance to cover your fun on 2 wheels. MTBA memberships are cheap and cover a bit not all of the cost and the club recommends everyone should have it.


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