Friday, 28 February 2014

Weeksy and Si's session

Steve and Simon turned up as arranged and the rainy day didn't deter them from coming to the session. The skills check showed me that they were accomplished riders but had small errors in their skills sets that had affected their mental skills.
 I needed to work on their body positioning predominantly as well as their looking and we set to work on the drop technique first. In no time at all, they were both riding the 1 meter drop and loving their new "technique". Over and over again they rode the 3 drops and the smiles on their faces were a picture as Simon said that he'd have not ridden that size drop before.
We worked next on Simon's fear of rock gardens and on both their body positions in corners, so we linked the 3 together and as the skills embedded, they got smoother and more controlled as line choice and braking areas made them faster .
We had a coffee break and while we waited for it to be done we worked on linking berms together using ther new skills and after coffee  we  resumed with linking the drop technique with cornering. And after a while, they both were riding the 4ft drop and once again, line choice and braking before the corner made the whole thing simpler and fast as a consequence.
Now it was time to work on their jumping. Neither had cleared a tabletop before left alone a gap jump, but that was about to change. Soon they were sailing over the 6ft tabletop with confidence and commitment, after a few goes they were eyeing up the gap jump too which Simon applied his mental skills to and rode easily, followed by Weeksy.
 Now an error by Si on the gap made him wash out on landing and when he got up we found his  Lappiere stem had snapped!!! This didn't deter Simon, he then carried on on my bike and kept jumping the gap and tabletop until it was time to move on.
We moved to the pump and jump trail to apply everything from the session in one trail and worked on gaining speed through sections of a trail to have speed to jump or absorb the following sections, then carry that speed through the berms we'd worked on earlier. A few runs saw Simon declare himself too tired to continue but Weeksy wasn't finished. He'd spotted a gap jump on another trail and wanted to ride it, although clearly tired and he rode it with a big grin on his face then declared an end to the session.
A great session came to a close and I know I'll be seeing them again for a ride.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

The boys from Swindon 24hrs early

 First I must confess to thinking that today was a day off but I made a mistake thinking that Luke, Dave, Paul and Doug were coming to see me on the 26th but a phone call saying they were running late meant that it was now!
 We had a coffee together when they arrived and I explained my outline for the session and what  look for in the skills check. I changed their set ups and showed them why and corrected their collective footwork, looking ad body positioning and then we set to work on the mental skills and applying them out on the trails.
They were never comfortable at trail centers when air time was available as a choice but now they were comfortable in the air and all 4 of them rode the 3 drops up to 1 meter high with ease.
 Next we moved to the skills trail and with a lunch break midway we worked on linking the 14 sections on the trail together. Flat, bermed, off camber and switchback turns were linked to pumping, jumping, drops, steps and rock gardens. They were all riding faster and smoother than ever and self diagnosing any errors too.
Nathan turned up to do some trail maintenance and joined in coaching them too which is something we do usually for 6 or more riders but the opportunity was to good to miss.
We moved onto riding steeper sections and they were amazed at the control they had now and even a near vertical drop off didn't faze them.
We moved on again to the 6ft tabletop and over the next half hour they went from can't jump to clearing the 6ft tabletop with ease and control. Doug, Dave and Paul even rode the 6ft gap jump side too!
 For our final application of the skills sets, we moved to another trail to work on choosing which technique to use in any section on the pump and jump trail and they carried that speed through 2 linked berms.
Nearly 6 hours since we began, our session ended as they were knackered both physically and mentally and we enjoyed a beer and a tour of the herts woodwork.

Jedi  @ukbikeskills  on twitter

Nathan  @ukbike_nath   on twitter