Magic Moments: Mila Meets Lea
A quick nod of agreement, and they’re off. Two mountain bikers descend down a steep, rocky, winding mountain path. Trailing in the rear is two-time mountain bike Olympian Lea Davison. Leading the duo: an 8-year-old rocking a helmet adorned with green Yoda ears.
Meet Mila — elementary student, woom OFF AIR 4 rider, and aspiring adventure seeker. Most third graders haven’t breathed the same rare air as an Olympian. Then again, Mila isn’t your average kid.
“She was picking these great lines down the trail,” Lea raved over Mila’s skillful handling.
“This is an 8-year-old… I could just fully trust in this little one to bring me down the best way in these trails!”
Let’s backpedal a bit… So how did Mila ascend to this point?
Seeking Silver Linings
With her relentlessly positive attitude and enthusiasm for the outdoors, Mila made the most of a tough situation and got into cycling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mila’s father Joe, aiming to keep her busy and active during that time of uncertainty, got her the superlight woom 2 as her first pedal bike.
After hitting the trails and quickly gaining confidence on two wheels, she was hooked! A woom super fan and lifelong cyclist was born. Although the pandemic had its share of challenges for everyone, one silver lining was Mila getting to spend extra time riding with her father – with a focus on getting off-road and into nature.
An Inspired Pairing
As a fearless, energetic, all-terrain rider, Mila easily caught our attention here at woom! After following her Instagram account @pedalinginpink, we met in person at the Sea Otter Classic bike expo in 2022. Upon witnessing this young girl absolutely shred, we were inspired to connect Mila with a trailblazing icon in the world of women’s mountain biking. Enter: Lea Davison.
When Lea began riding, the pathway into the sport of mountain biking was far rockier for girls. Especially within a relatively new sport that has traditionally been male-dominated, women fought an uphill battle for years to get recognition and acceptance. However, all that is changing, thanks to courageous women like Lea who have paved the way for future riders like Mila. As a competitor in the the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, Lea is now a retired pro mountain biker who knows a thing or two about adversity.
“Mountain biking has the power to really change lives, for women especially,” Lea beams. “I feel like that’s my mission here on earth – to empower women.”
In 2007 Lea co-founded Little Bellas, an organization devoted to helping young women reach their full potential through mountain biking. The group values strong female role models, being stewards of the environment, and healthy living. Creating Little Bellas was all about “trying to make a positive impact on the sport, and use the sport of mountain biking to lift up other women,” Lea explains.
A Surprise Encounter (for Mila!)
So how did Mila get a chance to show off her moves to the legendary Lea Davison? Given Lea’s background and Mila’s enthusiasm, we couldn’t wait until their paths crossed. The woom team partnered with Lea and coordinated with Mila’s father Joe to arrange the rendezvous. But for Mila, this magic moment was a total surprise.
After getting over some jitters (meeting your idol can be nerve-wracking!), they took off down the trail. When asked who should go first, Mila wasn’t shy about leading the charge. Lea instantly took note of Mila’s excellent form on her woom OFF AIR 4 mountain bike. “I was completely impressed,” exclaimed Lea, blown away at her ability to fully trust in Mila’s line choice. “She was standing up off her saddle, level pedals.”
It’s often refreshing to see the world through a childhood lens — and that was the case with Mila, who had a fantastic attitude even in the cold, rainy weather. “She’s one tough cookie,” remarked Lea. “Those conditions were brutal, and it didn’t seem to phase her at all. She was just so pumped to be out there and to be riding. That was really something to behold, because she was so skilled. She’s already light-years ahead.”
Joe’s Review of woom OFF AIR 4
“My 8-year-old daughter Mila has been riding a woom OFF AIR 4 since she was 5, and has had a fantastic progression on this bike. The look and feel of the components on the woom OFF AIR 4 is confidence-inspiring as a parent. The bike has a real air fork, which is an essential part of mountain biking; I can set the proper air pressure for my daughter's weight. You can’t do that with a low-end department store bike. Mila often says, “I have to be ready for the bumpies!’”
“The bike geometry is scaled down for our little Riders and really helps to have shorter cranks too. The quality build and durability make it excellent for passing it on to a sibling or friend for years to come. We’re regulars at SkyPark bike park in CA and always get stopped by parents who want to check out the bike. We also love the new Terra Coppa color! Start them right and they will thrive on the trails!”
Finding the right bike for the Rider can make all the difference. A hardtail mountain bike made the most sense for a Rider like Mila, with her access to mountain trails and her propensity for adventure. With its 20” tires, the woom OFF AIR 4 is a great entryway mountain bike made for kids who are 46”- 51” tall (usually around age 6 - but Mila started at 5!). Children who level up from the woom 3 to the woom OFF AIR 4 get their first taste of shifting gears and shock absorption, all in one package.
Because of the adjustable air suspension fork, each model in the woom OFF AIR collection can be tuned for the rider’s weight and the terrain. The child-friendly frame design makes mounting and dismounting a cinch. And the ergonomic, kid-specific grips and saddle ensure comfort over hours of rough trail riding. The knobby tires and disc brakes ensure a smooth ride and readiness for whatever lies ahead. The combined result? Enough confidence for an 8-year-old to impress an Olympian.
Return to the Trailhead
Reflecting on the day’s ride, Joe was grateful for the magic his daughter shared with Lea. Their instant chemistry was palpable; the connection through their common love of mountain biking was a sight to behold. The smiles, the shared wisdom, the mid-trail gummy worms, that feeling of enjoying yourself despite the rain – it all felt so right. Even in tough conditions, it’s rare to finish a bike ride and regret it.
For Lea, it’s rewarding to see more girls excelling in the sport that has defined her; for Mila, it’s motivating to see a pro up close and realize anything is possible. As Mila keeps on pedaling through the world one adventure at a time, we doubt she will soon forget her ride with Lea Davison.
Share Your Magic Moments
Whether it's your little ones' first time on a bike or your big kids' first ramp jump, these are the confidence-building experiences that woom is all about!
In honor of these achievements, we will be featuring a Magic Moment every Monday over on our Instagram. Use the hashtag #woommagicmoments for a chance to be featured on our feed. Let the magic begin!