Further information on one to one Performance Coaching
Having trained around a 1,200 cycling coaches for British Cycling and the UCI World Cycling Centre, and in combination with doctoral research in exercise physiology, I offer a unique perspective upon the performance coaching landscape. I am able to draw upon 25 years of experience and expertise to be able to effectively progress riders from beginner to Continental and World level cyclists.
My approach is about working in partnership with a rider to aid their progression. Limitations to performance and progression are often not so much to do with fine tuning physical development, but more frequently associated with confidence to succeed, technical and tactical competence as well as what I term 'performance knowledge'.
A structured plan is only the tip of the iceberg with regard to the support riders needed for many riders to consistently progress. My ethos is to generate a culture of reflective practice, driven by process goals, and a willingness to learn from failures as well as success. This creates a potent development environment, and is a clear step up from a plan that solely focuses on progressing physical attributes, such as a rider's FTP (just because such things are easy to measure). To generate such a culture, I keep the numbers of riders I coach limited, so I can take the time with each to ensure they feel they have the support and guidance to hand to progress effectively.
To effectively achieve targets, it is important to get to know a rider as an individual and see cycling from their point of view, to understand their motivations, their circumstances and their cycling aspirations, as well as the demands of the event they are working towards. Thus a tenet of Southern Cycle Coaching is to coach riders I can easily communicate with, as it really helps to ensure both coach and rider are on the same page.
I am really pleased with the way the riders I am working with have performed. Most goals set at the start of the year are achieved by the end, and it’s incredible to see how a rider can develop over the course of each season. As a coach seeing success across the range of individuals I am currently working with is inspiring and also gives me confidence that what I am doing is highly effective.
One to one coaching involves working specifically with an individual, or teams to help them achieve their cycling goals. Riders are provided with ongoing training plans, and support, personally tailored to enable them to meet the technical, tactical, physical and psychological demands of the events or goals they are targeting.
To coach a rider effectively, it is important to maintain regular contact, ideally this would be face to face meetings and opportunities for the coach to observe a rider race and or train, although this is not always practical with riders' lifestyle constraints. I use Training Peaks software, as a basis for prescribing and monitoring training load, as well as a range of communication methods, including phone calls, WhatsApp, Skype, etc., to ensure communication between coach and rider is easy and fluid.