How I Promote MTB in Taiwan With Passion

by Svenson Lin on 11/26/2019

Svenson Lin, XTERRA Certified Coach & Founder of I Running and Biking

Opened a training school using the concept of sports travel in 2015. Encouraged many road triathletes to enjoy training and to explore and travel around on the bikes, which was recognized by athletes all over Taiwan.
Coaching philosophy:
Make off-road sports easy to learn. Stay enthusiastic. Make a positive impact on the lives of others.
Without a doubt, Hengchun lacks of resources in the sports industry comparing to the major cities. People might say that it’s because “the market size is too small.” I’m not a business person, and selling and promoting goods are never my thing. Nevertheless, I’ve always believed that it’s not about the products we’re selling, but the people we’re communicating with. After all, whatever sport equipment or product people try to sell eventually are to be used by the users.
MTB is a niche market in Taiwan, and Cross Country (XC) is the niche of the niche. I guess that’s why we’re so often discouraged by the claim “the market is too small!”
From the manufacturer's point of view, the goal is to “sell the bikes, more orders, let’s make money!” I absolutely agree with the principle, but the problem here is “how we sell it” not “how many we want to sell.”
When everyone’s expectation is the sale of the bikes, it’s essential that someone “does the sale.” Only when the right person does the right thing to arouse the interest of their customers, can the goal be made. 
“The market is too small” has made me wonder if I’m the stubborn man wandering on a road less traveled by. “At least I’m doing the right thing, and I will continue doing it.” I tell myself.
I believe that doing sports is a merchandise itself. This “product” should be used by people, and all the equipment are just tools and media. Equipment won’t show you the charm and the fun of off-road sports, but people can feel it by doing it. That’s when people start looking for and buying products. 

XTERRA off-road triathlon has had great impacts on my life. For me, XTERRA is not just a race, it’s a lesson. XTERRA motivated me to continually pursue my passion. By passing this spirit on, more people will be willing to explore the unknowns. 
I love to share the wonderful experiences riding and running in the mountains and through the forests. These beautiful moments are precious in my life. By enjoying it and learning how to improve myself, I'm able to inspire others to join me.
Equipment is lifeless, only through guidance and coaching can people understand the excitement and grow interests in it. When people are motivated, they are more likely to buy products.
In a time when making money fast is the trend, I seem to be a fool. But fortune favors the fools. Steve and Alvin of SPECIALIZED Taiwan came all the way down to Hengchun just to support me with 3 different sizes of SPECIALIZED EPIC. They came with the bikes, left no other words except for the encouragement. I’m grateful to be the lucky one. It’s rare and precious that they’re willing to offer mountain bikes for coaching uses for free even when people think the market is too small. Such resource has been a dream to us in Hengchun.
Thanks to SPECIALIZED for having faith in me. I’m dedicated to MTB with all my heart, and I will make more people fall in love with this sport.

Translated and edited by XTERRA Taiwan Team