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For a BMX racer track time is almost worth as much as gold. For most of us we get one night of
practice and maybe two days of racing a week. When you factor in weather and that most of us have
other activities as well you can see why track time is so valuable. While you can do other training no
prepares you for BMX racing quite like BMX racing. So we should do our best to maximize our time
when we are able to ride at the track.
So once we get to the track we need a plan for what we plan to work on. There are dozens of skills
and drills we can do. As a new rider we want to focus on mastering the basic building blocks. Learn to
be smooth on the track, maintain good body position and bike control. If there is someone at your
local track who you can work with it would really benefit you. It always helps to get another pair of
eyes to watch what you're doing and give you some feedback.
Training at the Track
LOCAL BIKE SHOPS (OKC AREA)
These links are provided for convenience or
reference only and are not intended as an
endorsement by SPR or their agents.
One thing I encourage new riders to do at the track is to work on doing full laps all the way from the
gate start to the finish line. I know at first this can be difficult accomplish it does help when you
actually start racing. Even if it means that you have to take it slower than you would during a race it
gets you used to putting all of the skills together. If riders do not ever practice full laps or just spend
time working on one particular area you may find that it hurts endurance and transitions from one skill
to the next. When I'm working with a new rider I will have them work the first half of practice on full laps
and then for the second half work on individual skills or track sections.
One drill that will really help with both learning how to use bike control and track skills is to work on
pump laps. The rider will start in the gate as normal but at a set point on the track will stop pedaling
and only use the skill of pumping to complete the rest of the lap. When you first start try to only pedal
down the first straight and through the first corner. As this becomes easier then try moving the point
where you stop pedaling further back, say try just doing the first straight. The goal should be to stop
pedaling just before the first obstacle or jump and maintain good track speed for the remainder of the
It can also be beneficial to pick a spot on the track where you feel you need to improve and just work
that section. We do this a lot for rhythm sections. I'll have riders pedal all of the way through the turn
before the rhythm and then see if the can maintain or increase their speed at the end of the section.
Another good section to work on is just doing gate starts through the first turn. If you can work with
another rider or someone who can video your practice this can really help to see what is really going
on as you ride.
Since it is usually much easier for people to learn and understand a concept through video we have
included a video playlist from a Redline Flight School taught by Vet Pro Jason Carnes. I highly
recommend that new riders take advantage of clinics as often as they can. Having a coach or trainer
be able to watch and work with you is far better than just trying to figure out how to do things better.
Most tracks have several opportunites every year when traveling clinics are available. A growing
number of tracks also offer clinics for newer riders taught by a local pro or expert. Ask your track
operator when they might be having a clinic near you.