Editors note: the following is an excerpt from the recently published e-book "Ride Hard - the wild world of BMX/MTB" that will be available in paper-back in early 2006. This section is applicable to all athletes looking to improve their abilities or the average person looking to improve the life. "Ride Hard" chronicles not only the life and demands of those who know the fine line between success and failure in bike sports but also how you train for them. From one rider to another "Ride Hard" is for those of you who know how to live life to the fullest.
The Goals First let's go through some basic ideas on off-bike training. Training should be done such that it elevates your riding ability pure and simple. One typical mistake, for those who to train, is the weight-room junkie, getting all yoked-up but having no-game on the bike. While dedicated to his/her training, this type of training mindset is off target and doesn't improve performance in anything outside the confines of the precious gym. Equally, the error of many training concepts today is that they have confused generalized training with intense specialization. In an effort to train with a back-to-basics intent the individual inadvertently specializes in weight room work that dials into movements that degrade riding abilities. Thus our off-bike work must prepare properly for intense specializing to riding and the inevitable situations resulting from falls and spills. The Solution With this understanding the Renegade plan of attack is uniquely different because it isn't concerned simply with certain exercises or training mediums but with the underlying Renegade Concepts of Training which are:
I. Movements trained, not musculature II. Efficiencies of movement reinforced III. Motor patterning and grafting IV. Postural alignment is perfected V. Stabilization in the most destabilized training environments VI. Force developed such that it can be projected, accepted and redirected at maximal levels. VII. Adopt chaos as your "home". When Hell becomes the cradle I rest in -- all else is easy.Each one of these concepts is clearly adhered to within each component of training and at no time does any training go against these principals. The cornerstone consideration of Renegade Training is thus the development of a balanced athlete of grace, speed and strength which can be metaphorically illustrated as "the Wheel of Conditioning". The wheel is an interesting paradox of sorts. In our thirst for athletic development, athletes search for the mysterious elixir that will catapult their abilities further. Yet no "one thing" is the "whole thing" and to strengthen one "spoke" of the wheel while ignoring others will thereby weaken the integrity of the balanced, harmonious athlete. Again the wheel in its most elementary stage consists of a balanced development of:
I. Drive, Determination II. Sport Skill Skill -- Riding Technical Needs III. Range of Motion, Static IV. Range of Motion, Dynamic V. Agility VI. Linear Speed VII. Strength VIII. Work Threshold / GPPThese various attributes are the cornerstone to Renegade style training. Proper attention to each of these areas is paramount to achieving our goals. One notable exemption from the wheel and a point of confusion is the role of "balance." While the rest of the strength and conditioning community goes off into a diatribe over proprioreceptive training, they have missed the point, just like they haven't got what it takes to ride. It is my contention that balance isn't necessarily an attribute within the wheel but a condition and a byproduct of the entire wheel operating correctly. Within a properly laid out plan-of-attack "balance" occurs through sound design and mediums utilized as it is in-fact layered throughout the entire body of work, whether it be something as simple as varying work surface (from simpler choices of lifting platforms or soft sandy surfaces, grass or dirt to more extreme mobility work on the Indo Board, aggressive protocols with imperfection training, blindfolded lifts or quite likely the easiest adjustment to training, the wearing of the Xvest. Simply, with every level of our work "balance" or more accurately, postural adherence training is integrated. Balance in design, purpose and yes, life, balance is everything.
I. increase work threshold, levels of fitness II. assist in muscular recovery from arduous training III. provide a unique variation to training that may have become monotonous or routine IV. enhance motor skills, general grafting of movement V. provide a conduit to sport-specific movement patterns where appropriate or transitory effect during training macro-cycle VI. development of sub maximal explosive work and introduction into "complex" styles of training VII. prepare the psychological process of concentration with the "fog of war" VIII. development of espri-de-corp and a relentless thirst for victoryFrom a compliance standpoint GPP is typically performed in both (a) Weighted and (b) Non-weighted Most typically weighted and non-weighted programs will be designed such that overall time of training per section is equal but if not obvious as with its title -- this needs to be "generalized work" and not merely a specialization of non-conforming lifts/work habits. Work within this approach can be somewhat a break from the monotonous scientific nature of the gym training. Chat with J.Davies Live in the Renegade Training Forums