Matt’s one to one session

Matt’s company he works for offers payment towards personal development and he used this for his coaching session with me.
On meeting as arranged I gave him an outline of what I aimed to do for his riding today and set to work.
The skills check revealed some great habits that were bogged down by missing skills and once they and his set up were corrected we moved to the drop area to apply his new skills.
I worked hard on Matt’s looking and body position during the session and particularly to the drop technique and the effect was immediate. Matt was landing perfectly from the word go and confidently and with new found commitment, rode all 3 drops.

It was time to move onto the skills trail and i began with the pump technique which Matt grasped easily. We then used the speed gained to link the rest of the sections on the trail. Berms, switchbacks, off camber and flat corners were linked using the correct braking areas to steps, fly out jumps, drops and rock gardens. I worked on the trail in bite size chunks before adding the previous sections to the next. I worked hard on linking drops into corners and line choice too before finally riding the entire trail end to end. Each run was faster and more controlled than the last.

Matt began to show signs of tiring so I moved us onto the 6ft tabletop, something he had never done before and in a few small steps he sailed over it. After a few clears, mental tiredness took its toll and I ended the session with a riding demonstration on the woodwork at herts where Matt could see the exact same skills in use in my own riding.
Awesome riding Matt and I can’t wait for your riding updates.

Jon’s one to one mtb skills coaching session

Jon turned up as arranged at the Herts skills area and I gave him an outline for the session and Immediately ran him through my simple skills check.
The check revealed the missing looking and body position skills but also uncovered some great habits gained from years of doing various sports that I could use later in the session. I made some set up changes and then we moved onto the 3 drops to apply his physical and mental skill set to that technique.

In no time at all, Jon was landing perfectly and the simplicity of it surprised him.
We then moved onto the skills trail and began working on the 14 sections that are contained within it. I broke the trail into 4 segments and we worked on each segment before linking it all together.
We worked on pumping, something Jon had read loads about but didn’t make sense of it but when I explained it he was able to do it straight away. We used the energy gained to link it to flat.bermed, switchback and off camber turns. Rock gardens, steps , jumps and drops.

Soon Jon was riding the trail end to end in a smooth and controlled fashion that belied the speed he was now traveling.
We then moved onto the tabletop and Jon found the ease of jumping to be a very profound experience he said as he easily sailed into the air and landed perfectly.

Jon asked to see my alpine switchbacks, so off we went and I demonstrated how and why the skills applied but he was unable to say yes to the mental questions I teach each rider when deciding whether to ride something so we moved back to the trail for a couple more runs before our session ended.
Great session Jon and I look forward to hearing how your new skill set works for your riding.

Keeping up with the Jones!

John came to me for a one to one session and brought the bike he loves riding, a Jones fully rigid 29″er!
I began with the skills check and I identified the present and also the missing skills. After a few set up tweaks I set to work.
We moved onto the drops and applied the mental and physical skills that I teach and immediately John began landing perfectly.

After a while we moved onto the skills trail and began working on the fourteen sections contained within it and linking them together. Flat, bermed, off camber and switchback corners were linked to pump bumps, rock gardens, steps, fly out jumps and drops. I broke the trail into bite size chunks and we worked on those sections before moving on. Each segment was linked to the previous and the flow and smoothness began to show itself.
I focused on body positioning and looking skills as well as the four mental questions i get riders to ask themselves when faced with something new.
The end of the trail involved linking John’s drop technique and his cornering together and I worked hard on line choice here too before finally getting John to ride the entire trail end to end.
Each run was more fluid and faster than the previous one and John commented on it feeling slower but knowing He was traveling faster. After nearly five hours mental fatigue really began to show and our session ended. I gave John a demonstration of the same skill set in use in my own riding on a line on the herts woodwork that involved the same elements as the skills trail.
This ended an awesome session and i look forward to John’s riding updates of his future rides.

Dan’s bmx coaching session

I have coached Dan before for his mountain biking but he wanted to get a bmx to compliment his mtb skills too. Mark Atkins is the main bmx coach and I play a supporting role too. We focussed on his body position and using his legs more for the entire session and this is the outline for the session.

We began with dropping in, pumping and riding back out of a bowl and Dan got to grips with this easily. He had a habit of leaving not hoping the rear wheel over the coping and this was something that Mark corrected quickly.

Spine ramps and volcano’s puzzled Dan so we showed him how to ride those next. In no time he was riding across the volcano and soon began jumping it too.
It is very tiring to have a one to one and we ride for a few runs to give Dan a break so mark warmed up with a 360 table.

We moved onto the street section and worked on riding a line that included dropping into a quarter, step up and down and jumping a driveway. It took Dan a few runs to get enough speed to clear the jump but once again he really got to grips with it all.

We moved onto the resi tabletop and worked hard on Dan’s jumping and it took a while but he began clearing the entire tabletop jump as the picture above shows. We were 3 hours into the session and Dan was tiring so we took another break and both myself and Mark rode for 5 minutes.

Dan wanted to learn to rotate the bike in the air so we moved into the foam pit for this as it enables the rider to focus on rotating and not how hard the landing is and soon Dan was turning 180 degrees in the air.

We moved from there to our last task of the day. airing a quarter. For this we used a 7ft mini ramp to give Dan room to carve and hop into the air during his turn and this was something he got the hang of but tiredness finally got the better of him and our session ended.
Great progress Dan!

Simon’s 1 to 1 session


Simon has been riding for over 40 years and wanted to feel more fluid in his riding and especially in corners and anything involving wheels off the ground as when this has happened previous to our session it was luck whether the outcome was ok.
The skills check revealed foot, looking and body positioning faults so I focussed on the footwork and looking at first and after a few set up changes we could move on.
We moved onto the drops and Simon used his new skill set, both mental and physical to ride the drops perfectly from the word go and remarked at how easy it all felt.

From there I moved onto the skills trail and I separated the 14 sections contained in it into bite size chunks so we could work on them. First it was pumping and the speed gained was used to ride the trail. Flat, bermed, off camber and switchback turns were linked to fly outs, rock gardens, steps and drops. As we worked on each new segment, we added it to the previous ones and soon Simon was riding smoothly and controlled.
I worked on line choice when riding drops into corners and he rode them confidently and committed.
I moved onto the pump trail and worked on pumping undulations in a trail to gain speed and connect the rider to the trail. This was something he could feel and when the timing was right he was propelled forwards. Simon was visibly tiring by now but we had time to move back to the skills trail and the break did him good as he began riding the entire trail top to bottom faster and more fluid than before. Little errors began creeping back in as mental tiredness hit home and the session came to a close. It’s an awesome feeling to be able to see riders improve exponentially in front of me so much and i can’t wait for Simon’s riding updates.

putting the style into Marks riding

Mark had a session with myself about a year ago and wanted to return to see where he could develop further but also see if any bad habits had crept back.
I set up his new Santa cruz nomad for him and the skills check revealed that he had worked very hard on his physical skill set and was forming into a very tidy rider.
I began working on the coaching drops and worked on his body position to enable him to style it in the air. After a few goes it was becoming an unconcious action and this enabled me to move onto the skills trail to work on his cornering further than before.
In a short while he was riding the entire trail faster than before and feeling controlled and smooth.
I then moved us onto the pump trail and worked further on his pumping to generate free speed.
I then moved onto the woodwork and worked on a low ladder before moving onto an advanced drop. This is a drop from a ladder bridge onto a wooden landing with a gap.

Mark began moving the bike in the air easily and linked it into a wooden berm too. I showed Mark the next section of step up and step down and again he rode it confidently and with commitment.

After a few runs of linking the drop into the berm and then the step up and down, we moved back onto the 6ft tabletop and gap jump from our previous session so Mark could comfortably jump and style without thinking about a new move.
We then moved onto a 9ft gap jump that links into a corner and mark rode it 1st go smoothly and confidently.

We then added a drop before it to the mix and again Mark sailed through the whole line.

Lastly I showed Mark how to ride hip drops which involve a change of direction and again he was able not only to ride it but to make it look nice and smooth too!

Mark began to feel tired and called an end to the session himself. It makes me feel proud when riders I have coached have worked so hard on their riding after their initial session that I can see it all in their riding. Amazing session Mark and i can’t wait to ride with you again!

public jumps and drops session

The session was supposed to be 5 riders but after an injury on Sunday, one had to drop out and Pete and Nicole were no shows, I ended up doing the session with Si and Richard.
I began with set up and the skills check where I discover what is missing in their riding in terms of the skill set. I changed their set ups accordingly to enhance their skills.
We began with the 3 drops that are of differing heights and in no time at all they were both sailing over them and landing perfectly.

We then moved on. I gave them some cornering coaching to as I like to keep it realistic and get them to link drops into berms and once again they began getting to grips with it quickly.

After a while it was time to show why their new skill set made it simple and easy to jump. I used a flyout jump for this and eventually we moved onto a 6ft tabletop.

After a while , they were both landing on the transition sweetly and the smiles were beaming ear to ear. I could see they were tiring in the October sunshine but I wanted to show them the pumping technique and use it to gain speed along a trail.

Both Richard and Si connected with the technique very well and in a short space of time but the heat of the day and the mental aspect of my coaching sessions really took its toll and our session ended with myself giving a riding demonstration of the same skill set in use in my own riding.
A cold beer was shared in the shade as a fitting end to a great session.