The day arrived and it was cooler than of late and on speaking to him , Alastair has done a few different sports in his time and I knew I could use that experience to accelerate his learning. We began with my skills check and I found looking and footwork were missing and on correcting these a great body position habit surfaced.
I made a set up change and we began with the drop technique and then moved onto the skills trail. Over the next 2 hours we worked on pumping, rock gardens, steps, jumps and drops and linking them with flat, bermed, off camber and switchback turns. Line choice and braking areas were used to allow Alastair to ride smoother and faster than ever before and the difference was stunning.
We moved to riding steep drop offs and rode a near vert drop in using 2 different techniques and he said it felt so easy.
Next up, jumping tabletops. I worked on the mental skills set through the session and here he applied them as in a few small steps he was sailing over the 6ft tabletop and then rode the gap jump a few times too!
I wanted to develop his trail energy management further and moved to another trail to work on pumping sections and jumping by selection of technique on sight. Alastair even linked the 2 berms and the 7ft gap jump after them to the trail and the smile ripped across his face.
Alastair wanted to learn to manual section on a trail and had previous tried in vain but in a few minutes he was able to manual over a 9ft tabletop using his new skill sets.
I knew that he was tired and our session ended there and we went to the local pub for a doombar to celebrate a great session.