A few weeks ago I shared one of my favorite blog posts I’ve done over the years where I broke down how to Manual and Bunny Hop on Your Bike. I really like it because it was the result of a long, frustrating journey as I tried to figure out this elusive skill based on the “normal” advice, which didn’t seem to work for me and a lot of other riders I worked with.

The key for me was understanding the right way to use your hips and not your lower back when performing these skills, which is something that a lot of coaches miss when trying to explain them. Once you start to drive the movement from the hips then everything changes and you can start to move up the skills tree in a safe, progressive manner again.

The problem, though, is that knowing how to do it when watching it on the computer is one thing but actually being able to do it on the bike is another. Having a strong, explosive Hip Hinge is extremely important but it can be tough to train it on the bike, which means a training tool you could use off of the bike to help you get a lot of quality reps in would really be helpful.

Luckily, there is a great training tool that can help improve your body position, manualing, bunny hopping and jumping on your bike…and it isn’t some fancy new contraption that costs as much as a new fork for your bike.

No, this one is actually one of the oldest training tools around – the Heavy Indian Club. Using them for several Swing variations will help improve your riding skills and MTB specific conditioning like no other training tool can.

They provide all the elements you need in a great training tool – specificity and automatic feedback being at the top of the list – and they have completely replaced kettlebell swings in my own program and the riders I train.

In this Monday Coaches Corner video I give you a mini-workshop on this vital training tool, explaining why it is so valuable and showing you my favorite exercises to do with for skills and conditioning training.

Being able to use strength training to improve your MTB specific movement skills is an important part of a good training program. Using training tools and exercises like the Heavy Indian Club Swings can help you unlock more of your potential on the trail.

Until next time…

Ride Strong,

James Wilson
MTB Strength Training Systems

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