Stop being one with your bike!

Mountain Bike Way Better! Guaranteed!

Wow, what timing. We have been trying to simply explain why there is no other mountain bike coaching like BetterRide and why our students love us so much and then we got this email from a potential student (and yes, we wish all mountain bike riders were as astute as this guy):

“I’m thinking about taking the three day camp, but I have a couple questions. I have taken other training sessions with other organizations and they seem more like a group ride, which is not what I’m looking for. Are yours actual training and instruction? How many kids per instructor? I have taken scuba and kayak group trainings and they are painful. I see the benefit in watching and learning from others successes and failures, but I don’t want to be sitting in a line of 20 people waiting my turn wasting time. I guess I just want to make sure I’m getting the bang for my buck. Also, is women’s only training the same? My spouse may be interested if I’m successful. Thanks”

Our reply, “Thanks for writing.   I LOVE your email.   You will love our camp.  We teach a 19-21 hour curriculum spread over three days that is a large quantity of specific theories and drills that add up to the core skills of mountain biking.  We don’t just show you good riding or even just tell you to have proper body position.  We teach specific drills that will make things like proper body position become automatic for you on the bike. (you have to do the drills though!) We offer a money back guarantee if this is not the best investment you ever made in your riding.  We aren’t out to create the funnest three days for you, we strive to make those three days the best use of your time towards drastically improving your bike handling skills. The women’s curriculum is largely the same as the Co-ed camps.  Most co-ed camps have multiple women in them.  We coach 8 students at a time (occasionally 11- 14 with a second coach).

Gabe

Better Ride”

His reply to our email: “Gabe, thanks for all the info. Sounds like this is exactly what I want. I consider myself an advanced beginner rider that can’t turn. I’m still trying to find something or someone that has something negative to say about these camps and I can’t. So I will be signing up for one in the next couple months, just need to pick the place. I’m in Phoenix, but would not be opposed to going somewhere close.”

Well, that pretty much sums it up, structured, drill based coaching, low rider coach ratio and no bad reviews! (tons of extremely positive ones though) We really want to help you mountain bike way better and get even more enjoyment out of your riding and/or racing. Our money back guarantee and glowing reviews from riders just like you*, riders way better than you**, other coaches*** and riders not as good as you are testament to our passion for coaching. Do yourself a favor and sign up for a three day skills progression today!

** World Champ Ross Schnell, “I learned more today than in my 11 year career”

**National Champ and World Cup podium finisher Mitch Ropelato in an interview with Dirt Magazine

Dirt Magazine: “You seem to be able to turn amazingly, what do you put that down to? Got any special tires on there?

Mitch Ropelato: ” Ya, Gene Hamilton is to thank for that, I took is clinic last December in Bootleg Canyon and he was able to show me the correct technique I needed to pull them off.”

 

 

Students Doing Cornering Drills To Ingrain Skills Before Hitting the Trails

Students Doing Cornering Drills To Ingrain Skills Before Hitting the Trails

* Here is what two passionate riders had to say after one of our camps:

Hi Gene,

Thank you for creating what has been one of the best learning experiences of our lives.  We traveled all the way from Australia to attend your camp in Golden, Colorado and it was worth every penny! Andy was a fantastic teacher with great personal skills. He has our highest commendation for creating a safe, exciting and fun environment for learning.

It is refreshing to find someone who understands their field well enough to be able to deconstruct difficult and often hard to pinpoint concepts. This is a rare talent. We appreciate all of the careful thought that you and Andy have put into creating the mountain bike skills curriculum. The content was well-organized into different sections, and logically progressed from foundational skills (like body position and braking) to more difficult skills (like cornering). It is obvious that you have spent a lot of time not only thinking about how to mountain bike, but also how to teach it to others.

Learning these mountain biking skills has truly made us “betterriders”.  Thank you for the opportunity to attend your camp and we look forward to attending a core skills camp #2 !

Sincerely,

Tracy and Matt from Canberra, Australia      September 28, 2010

*** Another coach’s perspective:

“Gene,

      I took your Core Skills clinic from Andy and Chip 2 years ago and it changed everything about my riding. Without going further I want to thank you sincerely. My riding is more fun, safer, faster, in more control, and better in all ways because of you. I wear your shirt and bumper stickers proudly and tell anyone that sits still for too long about it. Since then I’ve purchased multiple books and taken multiple skills clinics. I recently got certified by IMBA as a level 2 instructor and teach for Boulder Mountainbike Alliance. After all that I finally feel ready to take a Core Skills 2 in 2014 (near Boulder?? please!!…;) In all the clinics I’ve taken and all the books I’ve read (2 from Lee and 1 from Shaums) it’s your class that has been the standard that no one else has reached. I’m totally psych’d to hear you finally plan to write a book. Sign me up for a copy, no matter the price.

David Holshouser”    from an email dated Oct. 19, 2013

 

Mountain Bike Injury Recovery Kit

While I much prefer writing about all of the positives of mountain biking an unfortunate thing about riding is injury, it will happen. As a mountain biker, snowboarder, skateboarder, dirt biker, cinder block and scrap wood ramp Evel Knievel imitator and BMXer I have had my share of injuries. Now, I’m injured again! I wish had some cool story how I was racing Steve Peat down a World Cup race track but I was actually going pretty slow and just got off balance a bit. Going 1-2 miles an hour in a rocky downhill switchback after rolling through a snow patch my front wheel slid left and I chest planted to the right, (right on to a cinder block sized rock) breaking four ribs and fracturing a vertebrae. Scary to get hurt that bad going so slow! This is a mountain bike injury recovery kit, not to be confused with a first aid kit. This kit is for when you wounds have been treated and you get home from the emergency room. I unfortunately had none of the items in this kit and would of been much better off if I had had them when I got home. Traumatic injuries do a lot more than break bones and often the treatments are almost as painful as the injuries. The first thing I wanted after being in the most pain of my life for 3-4 hours was something to kill the pain! They finally gave me an IV of something they said was 7 times more powerful than Morphine. It took my pain from off the charts down to a manageable 4 or 5 (on a scale of 1-10) but unfortunately it had one big side effect, nausea! As with the last time I visited the emergency room the second I was released I was wishing for more pain and less nausea. I threw up five times on the way to Dante and Jackie’s house and four more times on the way to get my prescription filled. Not fun with four broken ribs and pretty messy in Jackie and Dante’s van! By the time I got back to my house the next day I was feeling surprisingly good for a guy who slept for only a few hours while sitting up the night before. After a few hours getting a fair amount of work done the pain came back and I took my first Percocet. This was a big mistake as it created both nausea and gas (I felt like I was going to explode! the worst stomach pain of my life). Thanks to the help of two loving friends I made it through a pretty terrible night but would not wish that pain on anyone. Now to the kit that could of saved a lot of pain. My new Mountain Bike Injury Recovery Kit contains: Gas-X (to keep the bloating down!) Laxatives and stool softeners, there are many great home remedies to but you still need the ingredients.  (Pain killers block you up and many injuries make going poo even more painful.) A neck pillow (8 days later I am still sleeping sitting up, this really helps my neck!) Dramamine (I haven’t tried this yet but should help with the nausea) A Tens 3000 electro stem device (great pain relief) A Netflix subscription! Also, if you, like me often ride without your wallet it would be a good idea to at least have your id and insurance card on you when you ride, especially if you ride alone. Having my id would of saved me the final four bouts of barfing and would have gotten me to bed an hour earlier.

Can a Bike Company own the Name of A French Town?

If you haven’t noticed I really believe in sticking up for what I believe to be right. I learned of something today that has simply blown my mind, Specialized has some how trademarked “Roubaix” which is the name of a town in France. The town is famous worldwide for the Paris -Roubaix bicycle race, a grueling spring classic. Famous for it’s rough cobble stone sections, rain, snow, cold and injuries it is perhaps the toughest race in road cycling.

Well, some how Specialized has managed to trademark the name of a town that has been used in bike culture for years before Specialized existed. Not only that, they are threatening to sue a bike shop owner if he doesn’t change the name of his shop, http://blogs.calgaryherald.com/2013/12/07/war-veteran-forced-to-change-bike-shops-name-after-threat-from-u-s-bike-giant-specialized/

In a short google search I found a Roubaix Bicycles in Greeley Colorado, a Fuji Roubaix bicycle, quite a few tires with the name “Roubaix” in them, handlebar tape named Roubaix and Santini Ray Roubaix Road Bike LS Thermal Winter Baselayer Black! I believe Rock Shox used to have a Roubaix fork (short travel road bike fork) and bet there is a Roubaix Bikes in the town of Roubaix.

Turns out Specialized owns the word “Epic” too and has flexed their  muscles quite a few times enforcing their right to various words they own. Even a 150 year old nickname for Portland, Stumptown used by Mountain Cycles was fought against by Specialized who claimed the name could confuse the public into thinking it was Stumpjumper. The legal costs of Specialized’s law suit against Mountain Cycle may have been a big cause of their failure. More on Epic and other cases of Specialized flexing their muscles on questionable trademark lawsuits here: http://www.themountainbikelife.com/2013/12/whats-in-name.html

Well what do you think? Should an American company be able to trademark the name of a French Town that has been used in the cycling industry since before Specialized existed?

12/10/13 Update, turns out Specialized doesn’t even own the trademark “Roubaix”, Fuji bikes does and they licensed the name to Specialized in an agreement to allow Fuji to use Specialized’s Horst Link suspension. Which, in my humble opinion make Specialized look not only mean, but pretty dumb too!  “We are in the process of notifying Specialized that they did not have the authority, as part of our license agreement, to stop Daniel Richter … from using the Roubaix name,” Cunnane said in an email to BRAIN*. “While ASI does have the authority to object to Mr. Richter’s use of the name and while we at ASI understand the importance of protecting our bicycle model names, we believe that Mr. Richter did not intend for consumers to confuse his brick-and-mortar establishment or his wheel line with our Roubaix road bike. And we believe consumers are capable of distinguishing his bike shop and wheel line from our established bikes.”  * quoted from Bicycle Retailer Article, read the whole article here: http://www.bicycleretailer.com/north-america/2013/12/09/asi-says-calgary-bike-shop-can-use-roubaix-name#.UqddqsSsiSp

 

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Mountain Bike Handlebar Height and Body Position

Coach Andy’s informative and detailed article on mountain bike handlebar height.

Hi there, this is Coach Andy W. and the following is an email response that I sent back to a confused/frustrated rider.  He was having some issues concerning the height of his handlebars and was also the victim of some bad bike-advice from arguably the most common source of bad bike-advice: a riding buddy!
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