In 12 years of coaching mtb skills I still cannot get over how closed minded mountain bikers can be! “Oh, he is a single speeder, they always…”, “damn downhiller’s with 8″ of travel, of course they can ride that section, no skill, the bike does all the work, bet he can’t climb to save his life”, “look at that idiot on that fully rigid bike doesn’t he know…”, etc. Well, we are doing the exact same spot! Riding bicycles off road and guess what? The Core, Fundamental Skills are All The Same no matter what kind of mtb you are riding!
Why is this important to you? Because if you want to improve you can learn a lot from riders that are different from you. The skill it takes for Greg Minnaar and Mitch Ropelato to corner so well is the exact same skill all mountain bikers need, regardless of the bike they are on or the label they give themselves.
So open your mind and stop labeling people/riders/things. You can learn from our examples/videos/coaching even if the example we us is on a much different bike that yours. We are fortunate enough to coach many of the best races in the world in all disciplines of mtb racing and we teach them all the same core skills (although in our downhill camps we don’t teach climbing skills as climbing on a 40lb bike isn’t much fun!).
Yes, we taught singlespeed World Champions Ross Schnell and Sue Haywood the exact same cornering skills we taught World Cup downhill racers Mitch Ropelato and Jackie Harmony.
Check out this video from the Dual slalom at Crankworx! Great to see 3 BetterRiders in the finals and one of them winning the event! Bummer to see two of them going up against each other in the first round, Cody Kelly is a ripper and he had to face Mitch Ropelato in the first round! They are good friends and I have had the pleasure of coaching both of them, great kids as well as great mountain bikers.
Although we are most famous for having the best mountain bikers in the world (like World Champions Ross Schnell and Sue Haywood) taking our camps most of our students are just passionate riders looking to improve. While it feels really good and strokes my ego when MTB races like Ross tell me how much they leaned in our camps it is emails like the following too that really make my day.
Here are two emails that students have send Andy recently:
Andy — I wanted to write to say thank you SO much for your awesome instruction at the Madison Better Ride camp.
Thanks again for a great class in Cincinnati, worth every dime. You are great at what you do, and a perfect teacher…..keep it up!
Got my 31in bars and 50mm stem along with the seat post…..AWESOME!
It’s like a new bike, I love it. Really amazing the difference that all makes…….who’d a thunk it. lol
Thanks again for everything and I will be in the 2nd class for sure.
Have a great summer….
Kick off a Summer of Speed at the aCOS (a Culture of Speed) Grand Opening Party! Wednesday, July 13th from 12-7pm. A Culture of Speed is located at: 107 County Road 308 Dumont, CO 80436 (Westbound I-70 exit 235) 720.328.3726 www.acultureofspeed.com They’re celebrating the store opening with a free BBQ from 12-7pm. Be sure to […]
A warning to you, if you have a big ego you might not want to read this.
My husband, Zac, and I took your DH camp at Bootleg back in March and wanted to give you an update. I had been working on the skills on my local XC trails (Fantasy Island and Starr Pass). I figured otherwise if I only practiced on DH runs I’d hardly get any practice in.
Earlier this year I did the Whiskey off-road in Prescott. I was doing the 25 miler for fun, as I had never done it before. Took my camera along to take pics during the ride and everything.
I got to the first downhill and it was awesome! This was the first time I had to practice the new body position I learned in camp. No more stretching out over the rear tire. I had the elbows out, back flat, chest down and even though it felt a little strange because I was still getting used to it, I told myself to trust it and stay in that position. The trail was very loose with scree, but my rear tire was planted. Everyone in front of me was steering around the water bars and I was going straight over, passing when I could. I was watching the XC riders in front of me and it was scary. They were twitchy and all over the place and I just stayed in my body position, at some points at almost a track stand while I waited for them to get over an obstacle.
At one point the trail opened up onto a ridge down the mountain. Everyone in front of me was walking but I stuck to my guns and started down the hill. I called out to those down below “rider up” and they moved off the line as I rode down. Everyone was standing with their bikes as they hiked down and I rode by, and it felt like I was in my own personal World Cup and they were spectators on the side of the trail. It was awesome! I totally cleaned the DH and felt like a rockstar as the other riders watched.
Hope all is well with you!
If you want to ride like Elaine or simply improve your mountain bike riding, invest in yourself instead of your bike and sign up for a camp today.