The IMBA Trail Difficulty Rating System is a basic method used to categorize the relative technical difficulty of recreation trails.

The IMBA Trail Difficulty Rating System can:

  • Help trail users make informed decisions
  • Encourage visitors to use trails that match their skill level
  • Manage risk and minimize injuries
  • Improve the outdoor experience for a wide variety of visitors
  • Aid in the planning of trails and trail system

This system was adapted from the International Trail Marking System used at ski areas throughout the world. Many trail networks use this type of system, most notably resort-based mountain biking trail networks. The system best applies to mountain bikers, but is also applicable to other visitors such as hikers and equestrians. These criteria should be combined with personal judgment and trail-user input to reach the final rating.

Guidelines on how to identify and map trails suitable for bikers on handbikes and mountain tandems

Equipment for adapted mountain biking

Mountain Tandem

A mountain tandem is a mountain bike that can be ridden by an impaired person if accompanied by a rider seating on the front seat; mountain tandems have two wheels, two seats and two handlebars. They can be equipped with suspension and pedal assist.

Handbike offroad

A handbike is an adapted tricycle that can be ridden by a reduced mobility person; it has wide tyres and can be equipped with suspensions and pedal assist; this guidelines do not apply to triride.

Handbike offroad (downhill)


"we bike together - training and trail mapping in Europe"

is co-financed by the European Commission in the Erasmus+ Sport Programme

and it is developed by these organizations: