This page is brought to you by the SKCC training sub-committee and Ridewiser, and is dedicated to improving the skills and confidence of all SKCC riders, whether competing or not! Rob Crowe, two-time Olympian, and professional cycling coach brings you the tips and tricks of his craft; hopefully you can gain benefit from his years of experience at the elite level of competitive cycling!
WALK BEFORE YOU CRAWL
Strength training is a die-hard sport of its own, because to even start ‘serious strength work’ you have to have done 2 or 3 easy speed mountain rides before you can effectively ‘smash it’ up the climbs – doing that requires immense recovery, strength & muscle condition so that you can repeat the effort 3 or 4 times and still smile all the way home!
Too many riders cannot ride at 30kph average through a 60km ride in the Dandenongs without then passing out at work on Monday, but they will head out there to try big-ring efforts and 15-minute ascents of the 1 in 20 climb to Sassafrass! Aim to be really good at just riding over mountainous courses first, and then turn to higher speeds or big-gear efforts on your favourite climbing circuit.
Only the very best-trained athletes are justifiably crawling home to their pads after the smash to start a 48hr recovery process to total rejuvenation! If you’re creeping around for 4-10 days after your big mountain bash, then it’s time to wind back the speedo for a while and get the legs into uphill condition first!
Rob Crowe, 2-Time Olympic Cyclist.
CORNERING IS AN ART
Aim underneath, but stay behind. Cornering is an art; just watch some of the really good guys, but anyone can learn effective tips along the way.
For bunch cornering, it’s best to drift back a few metres coming into turns, so that you roll up behind and into the slipstream of the rider in front during cornering. Aim for the inside line or head towards the underside because any incident or crash will spill toward the outside lanes and slide outwards.
-Rob Crowe, 2-time Olympic Cyclist.
FOCUS TOWARDS THE HEAD OF THE PACK
To reduce that nervous, twitching feeling in the early season criteriums, remember to re-focus your gaze to the head of the pack – NOT on the wheel right in front. Quick movement changes & bike-handling are managed far better by using your peripheral vision. Relax and focus forwards.
– Rob Crowe, 2-Time Olympic Cyclist.