A few weeks ago, a few of us at TCR took at Professional Mountain Bike Course for Instructors (PMBIA). We did it to add some credibility to our upcoming camps and to properly learn how to teach mountain bike skills. Although, we have been mountain biking for many years, teaching skills properly is a different realm.
What did we learn in the course? A lot! After the first day, one of our best riders said “I think I am going to fail this course!” It is one thing to ride well, but it is another thing to teach what you do. I immediately thought of my sisters who are K-3 teachers. “How do you teach a newbie a skill that you take for granted?” What language do you use? Are they “Thinkers, Watchers or Doers?” Our brains were quickly overloaded.
First step, “Slow it down.” Let’s break the movement down to the fundamentals. What is your ready position prior to moving? We were taught to get back to basics instead of working on “how to ride faster.” Over the course, we all became better riders by riding slower. We often asked ourselves, “what am I actually doing? How do I teach this skill? The best coaches in any sport will get you back to the fundamentals of movement prior to working on the top skills of the pyramid.
In your quest to get faster, stop for a minute and think about where you can improve your technique so that you become more efficient and comfortable. Slow down your practice and do more repetitions. You may find out that you may need to get some coaching which will help you reach new levels of speed and enjoyment.