Team Budget Forklifts are committed to promoting a healthy world and living for the individual. Budget Forklifts have continued to support the sport of cycling because of its positive health benefits and low ecological impact on the environment. The team is providing the chance to learn from the riders with helpful tips and advice to take your cycling to a new level, or simply to improve your general health.
Master Class with the Professionals
As part of a new series of blogs, riders at Budget Forklifts will explain all the 1% extras involved in their success to being the top Domestic Team in Australia. The team's riders will be giving the opportunity to learn from their knowledge built from a life beyond the helmet.
Whether you’re sprinting for a cappuccino, or giving it your all on the Champs-Élysées, sprinting is an integral part of cycling. There aren’t many circumstances in bike races where a sprint doesn’t decide the outcome of a race. This means, it’s important you know how to give yourself an edge over your competitors. It doesn’t matter if you’re a recreational cyclist of a pro-tour sprinter – a sprint is a sprint!!
I think that one of the most important parts of sprinting is knowing yourself and knowing what you can and can’t do when it comes to the last 500m in a race. Whether you launch with a long way to go in hope of surprising the other sprinters, or you choose to follow wheels all the way to the last 50m. It’s important, because if you can sprint YOUR sprint, chances are you will have a better end result.
This leads me to another important aspect of sprinting – positioning. If you go into a sprint at 10th wheel and attempt to pass everyone with 200m to go, the speed you will have to sit on will need to be exponentially higher than every person in front of you. You need to have a plan going into a sprint (so you can sprint YOUR sprint but still be flexible as “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry” – John Steinbeck). A general rule of thumb is to sit at 2nd or 3rd wheel with 250m to go. You also need to be comfortable on your bike and around other people, otherwise getting to that prime position will be incredibly hard. The only way to do this is through practice. A good way to do this is to ride around a cark park with a mate and practice leaning on each other. Remember to be careful, no one likes hitting the deck!
Finally, two more (possibly race winning) tips! Once you start your sprint, you have to commit. Sprinting is an all or nothing effort and often hesitation means handing the race to someone else. Secondly, give yourself every shot at winning the sprint – just because you’re a climber doesn’t mean you can’t sit at 3rd wheel and back yourself for a sprint.
Now if you want to improve your sprinting, a work out which I love to use to sharpen off my kick is:
2. 4 x 6 second high cadence sprints, with 54 seconds rest between each (starting at 15k an hour)..
3. 4 x 6 second big gear sprints, with 54 seconds rest between each (starting at 20k an hour, start from about 75 RPM).
4. 5 x 20 second seated acceleration downhill with a minutes rest between each (whatever gear you can’t quite get on top of)
5. 5 x 15 second all out sprints up a hill (whatever gear is comfortable) just to finish off the legs.
That’s all for now,
See you at the finish line!
Part One will go through the importance to maintaining a strong core (abdominal muscles) & a basic exercise program to get you underway.
Firstly maintaining your core for a physical appearance is something half the generation these days are worried about. There are two benefits to core strengthening exercises, yes of course a 6 pack, but more importantly to improve your ability to ride a bike. Riding at a competitive level such as our riders at Team Budget Forklifts, they are on the bike from anywhere between 2-6hrs a day 7 days a week. This can take a negative effect on their bodies both mental & physically. The more we ride, naturally our body will adapt, but to improve your pedal stroke, power output, stability, position & endurance, our riders incorporate core strengthening exercises into their programs. This regime doesn’t need to take up 2hrs of your time, short sessions 20-30mins in length is all you need. Team Rider Alex Wohler spends up to 20-30mins every second day maintaining his core. Below is a basic guide to start you off, start out doing the following twice a week until you notice its getting easier then add, more sets & more exercises in the program.
Plank (30sec x3)
Side Plank (30sec x3)
15 Crunches (Legs layed out x3)
Extension holds (Legs hovered off ground 10sec at different angles)
Crunches (Bring legs to head x3)
Medicine ball twist (20x3)
Plank (till you drop)
Crunches (legs layed out)