NEWS

Fitness Tips for Success

December 25, 2014

From a coaching point of view Downhill is considered as a sprint sport. This ranks alongside other cycling disciplines like BMX and Track Sprinting. The reason is simple really. It’s to do with the physical abilities required for the effort. To explain. Cross Country requires mostly endurance and muscular endurance, with power, strength, speed and flexibility not so important. Contrast that with DH, which requires speed, power, strength, while muscular endurance, endurance and flexibility are not so important. Other very important attributes, which are required to become a great Downhiller are, co-ordination, skill, balance and psychological toughness. So to train for the very demanding sport that Downhilling is, you should really separate all of these components and work on them individually at first, before finally combining them to great effect in the competition arena. It is useful for all athletes to try to embrace the periodised way of training in order to maximise their time and potential as a Downhiller. Below is a suggested structure for a year of training.

There are generally considered to be four major periods in a
training/racing year.
Base/preparation
Build/pre competition
Race/competition
Transition/recovery
In each phase you should work on different parts of your abilities. For downhill we have already discovered the components so lets split them up in to the periods

Base/preparation
Speed in the form of over rev intervals bike
Strength in the form of low rev intervals bike and Gym work
Flexibility in the form of pilates/yoga Skill/technique in the form of bike work on individual parts of DH courses
Mental work in the form of concentration and relaxation
Aerobic conditioning in the form of low effort rides on bike
Build/pre competition Speed in the form of over rev intervals bike and short sprints
Strength in the form of low rev intervals bike and Gym work
Flexibility in the form of pilates/yoga or even plyometrics
Skill/technique in the form of bike work on individual parts of DH courses and short startgate efforts
Mental work in the form of concentration and relaxation plus visualisation an pre comp routines
Aerobic conditioning in the form of low effort rides on bike Race/competition
Power in the form of long sprints and start gate max efforts Strength in the form of Gym work
Skill/technique in the form of bike work on individual parts of DH courses and short start gate efforts
Mental and tactical work to ensure athletes mind is ready for racing
Aerobic conditioning in the form of low effort rides on bike
Transition/recovery Flexibility in the form of pilates/yoga
Recovery of body and mind be trying other sports or dirt jumping etc etc
Now the list above is just an idea of what can be done. These are just suggestions. Each athlete is individual and so needs to establish a programme based on his or her needs.