Great times at the three day BetterRide XC race camp in Phoenix last weekend. I’m not as fit as I used to be but I still crave that feeling of railing corners and ripping down a trail. I learned skills and drills I can work on to improve from coach Gene at camp.
Gene and me (Lynda).
Genes goal is to teach as much as he can in three days. This means for campers more listening time than riding time. Oooh…that was a tough one for me because I want to ride more than listen! Learn for three days in camp then drill and practice for the rest of your life at home. This does make sense.
Daily flow at camp went like this; talk over a skill, do a drill, move on to the next skill, drill, repeat for most of the day then a short ride on trails to practice what we learned that day.
Camp started with the fundamentals of body position and balance. Simple stuff. Gene stripped it down to the basics. Every advanced skill builds on a base of perfect core skills.
One drill had Gene holding us in place and adjusting us into perfect position until we were balanced enough to be track standing. It was really cool to feel so balanced once everything had been put into place and corrected.
Look up……. Elbow up….. Chest down….. Look up again…..
Gene: “Lynda, do you have a stiff neck?”
Evidently it takes so much force for me to get my eyes up it looks like I have a stiff neck! Target fixation is a bad habit of mine.
On the trails at the end of each day we rode with a single focus, stopped to review then moved on with a new focus. Putting all the different parts together at once was too much; look through corner, elbows up, weight in feet, chest down etc
We learned and practiced skills in a safe environment so we could focus all our attention on the drills without fear taking up brain bandwidth.
Gene demos a switchback.
Wheelies was a fun one. I have never put much effort into being able to wheelie before. Now I have a goal to be a wheelie queen by the end of the year! Gene taught us two different types of wheelies.
We filled the camp with LW athletes so had a nice focused group. That made it fun.
At the end of camp wrap up, we discussed what we learned in camp and what our #1 take home lesson was. It was an interesting exercise as no two were the same. My #1 thing – look through the corners not at the corners. I’m excited to make that a good habit. It certainly smooths out the corners for me.
By Lynda Wallenfels Google+