Ever since we were baby's beginning to learn how to move, we began to work on the fundamentals of movement. Think of it as the birth of our adult athleticism and eventual riding potential.
The evolution of our athletic capabilities started to take shape when we were babies laying on our backs staring at the ceiling. Quickly our desire was to see the world around us by trying to lift our head while on our stomach. Our next goals began to quickly get off the ground by first turning over, then pushing up off the ground and pulling ourselves around, then crawling before eventually working up to pulling ourselves up to stand. Of course, our ultimate and final goal was being free and learning how to walk, thus beginning the rest of our lives as moving beings.
Part of the movements we performed as a baby are what Paul Chek called “primal movement patterns.” In order to do those things as a child, we began to activate these seven primal movement patterns:
I grouped the lower body patterns together - Squatting, Lunging and Bending. Video #2
is more upper body focused with Pushing, Pulling and Twisting patterns.
As an example, these seven patterns are developed during the ages of 2-18 and through “Long Term Athletic Development” (parents, check out www.ltad.ca for a swath of resources to help your children full develop athletically). These developmental windows are particular periods of time that your body is open to learning specific attributes of movement.
Why is this important to you today as a mountain biker?
Because even though we aren’t learning any of these primal movements for the first time like you did when you were a baby, mountain bike athletes still need to consistently work on improving movement abilities to truly achieve the highest level of riding capability. The only obvious difference is that you are older, have had injury/trauma(s), have tightness, weakness, etc., etc., In other words, your system is polluted with compensation.
But don’t be discouraged! The way to begin to solve some of these compensatory issues is to train with these seven “primal movement patterns” as the foundation of your training program(s) with the goal of perfecting your ability to move as cleanly as possible.
As you begin to "own" these moves, you will be rewarded with:
o Better skills on and off the bike
o Improved ability to move around on the bike
o Sustained strength throughout your rides and races
o Reduced fatigue
o Injury resistance
o Optimal posture and breathing mechanics
o Great ability to transfer bike to body forces
Understanding this simple concept around working to move as well as you can, I’ve created two training videos for you to implement this 2019 training season.
I'm Coach Dee, the trainer for @yeticycles
. I'm a 50-year-old enduro racer who just won my second overall season championship as a masters racer in the @bigmountainenduro
series. Get ready for 2019 with the new MTB Strong training program here
with a PinkBike discount of 25%.
View all of Dee's previous articles and videos here
When it comes to strength training I simply listened to tons of podcasts by Rippetoe, Barbell Medicine and Juggernaut Training Systems. Aside of guests of Rogan... i listen to them while working. I also train a lot (relatively, as for someone with a day job and small kids - 3 times a week). My current numbers on 1 repmax are 180 on DL, 135 on low bar squat, 95 on fromt squat, 92,5 on bench and 62,5 on overhead press. Novice but getting there.
edit: Just watched part 2. You were right. this needs more heavy pulling, pushing and and vanilla core work.
Starting strength and Barbell Medicine. Strength Untaaaaam’d!
While barbell training is the foundation and possibly best bang for the buck, you have to remember it’s a foundation. You have the rest of the mtb house to build. You need to add plyo and single leg exercises as the season starts to come near. I must say that as my lifts started to improve fast, my cardio deteriorated quicker than I anticipated. Time to hit the road and intervals in the woods. One cannot survive only on Fhiiiiives.
This was a good one Dee. Can you do one with examples of plyometric exercises for cyclists?
You and I would not be surprised at the shockingly small percentage of Pinkbike frequenters who are able to pull their own bodyweight off the ground and over an overhead bar. Or, hold their own bodyweight off the ground for extended periods of time, for that matter.
I am certainly not advocating everyone dedicate heaps of time under load before their 'season' begins, but the illusion of complexity is strong here. Pinkbikers generally live out pretty run-of-the-mill jobs and lives, and would benefit greatly from improving a handful of movements - Working on bettering their overall health and NOT acting like bloody leopards in the veld, in preparation for their next race season.
Thank God you are so smart and can help the rest of us plebeians realize how inferior and run of the mill we are.
I mean, we watch your videos, see your race results, admire your riding style, we should be nothing but grateful for your advice right? How's that armchair treating you these days?
@ryanwortmann, no one?
I don't need plyometric nor single leg exercises for a damn reason.
plyometrics are some bullsht because they lack evidence base for efficacy in building strength. Single leg exercises are some bullsht because compared to squat/DL/PC the load you can lift is small change and an accessory (at best) to real movements, only one step away from balancing on gym balls and such sheite.
You gona neg me again or engage in sensible discussion broski?
As to plyo, I mean it is hard to argue that 5 rep maxes have any good bar speeds that could resemble riding a bike. It iw hard to to do RDLs fast and not demolish your knee caps by hitting them with the bar. Even Rippetoe advises incorporating cleans, snatches and barbell rows. Powerlifting is plyo.
I have no science to support that. All I know is that BMX racers to lots of plyo as the season approaches and I won’t argue with the most powerful cyclists out there who apply skill and power to their riding. Everything we do on the bike as it goes down the hill is plyometrics based on isometric endurance of the body holding the riding position. Last year with 135x5 I had next to no arm and leg pump already. What I missed was power. It was evident when riding with fastest dudes, riding away from me as soon as some pedal strokes could be put in. And I assue you they didn’t lift more than me.
plyometric exercises as in jumping around, throwing weightbed balls and jumping on boxes are a bit silly, but I agree to an extent that P-rows/oly lifts/submaximal DLs/weighted pullups done with speed and intensity could be "plyometric movements", though I would never call them that.
I like to think that I've got decent power and I don't go competitively jumping on boxes in the gym
1) Riding frozen trails
2) Practising wheelies
3) Practising bunnyhops
4) Learning to jump a table at the local jumpspot
5) Roosting snowberms
6) Practising trackstand on my way to work
7) Finally do some long xc-rides in the lowlands as there’s too much snow on my regular «enduro» trails
For those of us that appreciate the information, thanks a ton Dee @enduromtbtraining! For everyone else, we will all be stronger and faster while you are still basing!
The movements shown in this video are great for practicing once you've worked the power-lift movements.
It almost sounded like you said something like "less beer, bla-bla, something good". Damn auto correct really messed you up there huh? Don't know how it made less out of more but I've seen it make wierder corrections than that.
gram you should come to my house for some cake and pints
Dee has a lot to say cuz there’s so much knowledge to spread to all, pros and noobs alike!
I used to think I was in shape, could ride a bike fairly well; then Dee (and Lee McCormack) showed me how little I really knew and how much more potential I was leaving untapped.
for different circumstances I can't ride as much as I'd like and my only workout other than riding is bouldering, which I do 3-4 times a week.
How does rock climbing specific training interact with mtb?
I feel like being pretty fit for climbing has little to no effect on bike performance, other than improving arm pump
On the whiteboard in the first video, is "Upper" and "Lower" supposed to be the reverse of that? Or is there a reason you have it listed the way it is?
In each video you mentioned not switching up your forward foot in the riding position. I alway ride the same foot forward. In fact, I snowboard with the same foot forward and rarely switch it up. Do you recommend adding some extra strength work on my forward leg or do you think that evenly balanced leg work (i.e. squats) is enough?
You mentioned working from high reps to lower reps as the winter months progress. As someone without a gym and additional weights, would a continued high rep (15-ish) workload be beneficial? My main goal with strength training this off season is stamina over long descents. I've been in pretty good cardio shape this year due to a half ironman event I did in June (and will do again). However, I noticed that i was getting fatigued when i was pointed down the hill. At this point in time a gym membership is not in my near future.
Appreciate your viewpoint's Dee Tidwell.