Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Quickie with Superstar MTB trainer James Wilson

James Wilson was nice enough to answer a couple questions about training for BMX. For those of you who don't know James, he's a really bright guy that has trained some of the top Mtb guys. I love all the videos he puts out, and I'm happy everytime he graces us with a new blog post. Check his site out at

Question #1- What in your opinion is the single best exercise to develop the gate start?

(James)- While kettlebell swings and snatches are hard to beat, I really like banded swings for developing max power. I like swings better than the traditional Olympic lifts since they are a forward projection of energy as opposed to the upward projection of energy seen with Olympic lifts plus they are easier to learn. Since you want to project your energy forward out of the gate and not up swings are actually more specific in my opinion.

Question #2- What do you think is the most common mistake people make in training?

(James)- Following a program designed for another goal. General fitness programs like Crossfit and lifting sports like Olympic lifting and power lifting all have different goals than riding and while you can learn something from their approaches a lot of riders confuse general "principles" with specific "methods". Riding a bike requires a mastery of specific movement patterns and fitness laid on top of those patterns and blindly using other approaches can lead to less than optimal results. 

Question #3- If you could learn one trick on your bike what would it be?
(James)- The only trick I have is keeping the wheels rubber side down and not crashing but if I could do any trick I think that a tailwhip would be pretty sweet.

Thanks again to James for taking the time out of his day. I plan to ask others in the BMX, MTB, and strength and conditioning fields similar questions and hopefully get some good answers.

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