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“Youth BMX Blueprint” Puts Best Pedal Forward

April 17, 2018 by · Comments Off 

Youth BMX Blueprint

Notwithstanding the polar punch in the mouth many of us in the midwest felt last week, it’s about to be spring time, and the return to outdoor racing in the Northern Hemisphere.

This means you can stop duckin those indoor parking garage security guards and return to a life of sprinting on the straight & narrow, and getting your general conditioning, back to peak condition.

Coach Jake Stephenitch of Spark BMX Training is out with the “Youth BMX Blueprint,” an eBook and step-by-step training program developed especially for riders 7-16 years old. The eBook is 50-pages thick and dives-deep into all the important aspects of training younger riders. The program also comes complete with a library of companion videos to help both rider and trainer understand the exercises.

Knowing what type of training is appropriate for 16-unders is not easy; there are special considerations to observe. This book will give you the knowledge to understand what physical qualities should be emphasized at each age and stage.

Jake told News, in a release:

Youth BMX Blueprint training programs are broken up into three stages of development. Each stage has multiple training programs written specifically to help build coordination, strength, power, and fitness, safely for young BMXers. There are 16 different training programs as well as a video exercise library of over 200 coaching videos. Most programs require minimal equipment.

Finally, each purchase comes with free access to the Spark Kids private Facebook group. Here you will receive extra videos and help from coach Jake. You can post videos, ask questions, and show off results from the program.

Here’s some additional info on the goodies you’ll have access to as part of your investment:

INSTANT DOWNLOAD INCLUDES
- Youth BMX Blueprint eBook
- 16 total training programs
- Over 200 coaching videos of fundamental and unique exercises
- Huge Exercise library with many extra videos for each age level
- Printable workout sheets

The Blueprint requires minimal gym equipment and is on sale now for $39.95. Check the link below for more info and to order yours today.

More about Jake:
Jake Stephenitch is an NSCA certified personal trainer, Functional Movement Specialist, gym owner, parent, and longtime BMX racer. (and BMX News contributor, we’ll hasten to add)

Links

Youth BMX Blueprint Order and Info

Dr. JRich “World Champion Mindset” Course

May 15, 2017 by · Comments Off 

BMX World Champion Mindset Course

Train your brain to win the main this July in Rock Hill with the “World Champion Mindset” course by Dr. Jason Richardson. A multi-time UCI World Champion, himself, JRich uses all the techniques and insider tricks he uses for his high-dollar athlete and corporate clients, and brings them into a Read more

Five Reasons to Do the Pre-National Clinic

July 26, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Five Reasons to do the Pre-National Clinic
By Donny Robinson
BMX Racing clinics are widely used to help riders develop their on-track skills by incorporating highly specific exercises that will fast-track the learning process. The majority of our success at any race is determined by the amount of work we do in the weeks leading up to an event, but when a pre-national clinic is offered, on the actual track you’re going to be racing on that weekend, there are serious advantages to signing up.

In this Pro Gate Training and Coaching section article, I have laid out five important reasons why, if done properly, the teachers at a pre-race clinic can offer your rider the best investment you’d be able to make in ensuring they walk away with the results they’re striving for.

Track Time
With nationals becoming larger-scale events, riders are often limited to just a few laps during their small window of age group practice. The pre-national clinic is a great way to learn the intricacies of a new track–without the time constraints of the practice schedule. Parents are spending big to attend the race, anyway – this is an excellent way to help get the most out of your trip!

Everyone Likes Secrets
All tracks are different. From the gate, to the jumps and turns, all the way down to the prime passing lines, if you can get insider tips on every advantage that a seasoned racer knows about a particular facility, wouldn’t you want to hear that advice? Afterall, most of us teaching the pre-national clinics have been racing these tracks for a loooong time. Naturally, you could learn from trial-and-error on your own, but when the chance arises to learn the tricks-of-the-trade from a trusted advisor, jump on it, whether you’re a local to the track or coming in from another state.

It’s All Mental
The level of performance for national BMX Racing continues to rise; from Novice riders all the way through to the Professionals, racers are becoming more similar in their bike skills and overall physical fitness among their peers. So, then, why do some riders continue to perform far below their potential? It’s all mental, son – you should know that! Many of us train day-in and day-out, working on our bike handling and physical conditioning, but how much of our time is devoted to mental preparation? No amount of strength or speed will overcome a poor attitude or lack of confidence. It’s time to get your mind right. Nothing…and I mean NOTHING…is more important while at the race than your attitude and outlook! Find a place or a person that will help you achieve your full potential – on and off the track. The pre-national clinic has that going on in a big way.

*Parents, I know you can use a helping hand getting your riders to listen to the motivational words you’re likely already sharing with them.

BMX News Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate
BMX Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate

Beat The Nerves!
How many times have I lost the opportunity to qualify for a final simply because I could not get comfortable with my nerves or the race atmosphere before it was too late? Far too many. It’s the same at every level. Most of the time, we show up (likely to a new track), get a limited amount of practice, and are then expected to perform at the top of our ability in the first rounds of qualifying – sometimes it takes longer! The more laps we can get, the more we’re surrounded by other racers, the more we can get comfortable with all the surroundings, the more we can relax when race time comes and focus on the very specific list of tasks we need to complete to transfer through qualifiers and into the main event.

Make The Most Out Of Your Trip
Bottom line is, you need to make sure every box is checked before attending a national event. Are you ready to have fun? Have you dedicated yourself to your training? Well then, what else could you do to make sure all of the hard-earned money you’ve already spent, will not go to waste? Do pre-national clinics cost money? Yes. But in the grand scheme of funds being invested, it’s a drop in the bucket, compared to the difference a proper clinic will provide (and the awkward ride home on Sunday when you have nine hours to ponder the one that got away). We often look at things and ask, “Do we really need this?” My answer is, do what you feel is right, but don’t regret not doing everything you possibly can to help yourself achieve your goals.

Editor’s Note
I asked Donny to write this article after talking with some parents in Rockford last weekend, and getting a sense of how they greet a strange (to them) track, which has big-name national riders who know the track like the back of their hand. The same is true, of course, at any level. One dad said “we really should have done the Redline clinic.” The implication was that his rider could have used some extra track time, tips on the terrain, and a solid coaching-up experience before the big day.

Since dR is doing the pre-national clinic for the next race: the Steel City Nationals in South Park, I thought it would be a great opportunity to hear about his take on pre-national clinics, in general, and maybe get some insight into how he runs his show.

As a thanks to Donny for the above wisdom, please give a click to the link below for more info on his South Park clinic.

—Mike Carruth

Links

Pre-National Clinic: 2016 Steel City Nationals






BMX News Promax Top Story, Presented by Promax Components

Keep Your Gear Factory Fresh and Funk-Free

July 6, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Tips for cleaning your race gear

By Heather Parker

The drive home from the track this time of year is almost unbearable. With temps in the high 90s, and humidity at a maximum, being trapped in the car with sweaty teenage boys and their sweat-soaked gear leaves me gasping for breath, and my eyes streaming.

Bless their hearts. It isn’t their fault. The harder they ride, the more they reek. I get it. What I don’t get is that God-awful smell infiltrating my home.

Here are my personal tips on how to keep your gear factory fresh:

Laundering
Immediately throw jerseys, pants, gloves and pads (if applicable) into the wash.

Here’s the important part: Add one cup of vinegar to your rinse cycle. Detergent alone will not deodorize these hardcore smells, and at the first inkling of the next sweat, it’ll be full-on funk.

Let gloves and pads air dry thoroughly. The rest can go in the dryer.

Helmets
After asking around, I discovered that there are several different methods people use to keep family helmets fresh. I did some experimentation, and found this to be a clear path to a clean and happy helmet:

Remove pads and liner. Hand wash in the kitchen sink with hot water and Dawn dish detergent. Why Dawn? Oil, my friends. Those cheek pads are full of it, and the sink will have a slick like the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez spill (the bird washers on that gig used Dawn, too, by the way!).

Just like a greasy head of hair: wash, rinse, repeat. On the final rinse, fill the sink with water, and add a cup of vinegar. Voila! Funk-free cheeks.

Dry in a well ventilated area— outside in the sun if possible.

Now for the shell. Make that sucker a bubble bath. Fill the tub with warm water and Dawn. This works great if you need to wash multiple helmets. Throw them all in there together. Let them bathe together just like your kids did when they were little. Rinse thoroughly, and air dry, bottoms-up, in the sun if possible.

BMX News Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate
BMX Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate

On-The-Road Reek Control
The above is all fine and good when we’re at home. But what about a three-day national in the full-on heat and humidity of summer? That Sunday drive home can be pretty vile. Here’s how you can stop the stench:

Utilize the hotel laundry room. My kids don’t have three sets of gear, so I typically do a load of wash on Friday or Saturday night.

Air dry between motos. Never put your helmet back in the bag unless it’s completely dry.

Go to the liquor store. You heard me! Mix up a solution of 1 part vodka, 1 part water, and your favorite essential oil, then load into a spray bottle and spray away. IMPORTANT! Use “airline” bottles for your spray mix; you do not want to travel on the roads home with an open container of vodka (dump any remaining spray solution before you leave).

I experimented with this on a funky pair of unwashed gloves, and it killed the scent instantly…You’re welcome!

Exact recipe here (link will open in a new window)

Those are my favorite tips, but there are a few more that deserve honorable mention:

- Place helmet in the dishwasher. This definitely works, BUT, make sure you take it out before the dry cycle. Too much heat can compromise the helmet.

- Put your helmet in the freezer overnight. I haven’t tried this, but supposedly it kills the bacteria, and therefore, is likely to flatten the funk.

- Keep a fresh dryer sheet in your helmet bag.

I hope some of you find these tips helpful. May your next road trip return smell like roses (or some essential oil of your choosing)!

—Heather





BMX News Promax Top Story, Presented by Promax Components

Building the Perfect Home Gym

June 20, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Creating a Home Gym
By Jake Stephenitch and Shawn DiPrete

You know that home trend a few years ago where everyone wanted a man cave in their house? They would plaster everything in sight with their favorite sports team souvenirs. Decorative beer collectibles. Maybe a Reggie Miller signed jersey. Blackhawks ceiling fan. You know, all the essentials.

This year Shawn DiPrete and I are starting our own trend – replacing all that junk with a sweet home gym. A place of your own to do really high quality strength training without breaking the bank. Instead of spending a ton of money on one of those multi station machines that don’t really work all that well, let us show you some better options.

Option 1: The Mega Baller Home Gym
The Mega Baller Home Gym is awesome if you have some extra space and a bunch of money to spend. You will have the benefit of being able to do all of your training from the comfort of your own home without those creepy naked guys in the locker rooms. Basements can be a particularly good place to put a gym because the temperature is usually perfect for training year-round. You could also put the equipment in a garage and possibly catch the attention of a cute girl walking her dog in front of your house as you Squat shirtless.

Baller Equipment List

Power Rack (squat rack) -craigslist/Rogue fitness

Olympic Barbell and weights – Craigslist

Dumb Bells – Craigslist (usually $.50/pound)

Trap Bar(hex bar) – Craigslist/Perform Better

Flat Bench – Craigslist/Rogue Fitness

Resistance Bands – EliteFTS/Rogue Fitness

TRX or Suspension trainer or Gymnastic Rings (much cheaper than suspension trainers) – Craigslist/TRX/Perform better

AB Wheel-Target 
Plyo Boxes – Do it yourself (I recommend building them in three-dimensional sizes) example the ones I have at my gym are 30x36x42 http://www.artofmanliness.com/2015/07/21/how-to-make-a-plyometric-box/

Medicine balls – Rogue Fitness/Perform Better

Chin up/Pull up bar – DIY, or comes with power rack

Bike for conditioning (Schwinn Airdyne, Spin bike, Rollers, trainer)

Gym Flooring – Horse stall mats from your local farm supply store are about $30 for a 4′x6′ super heavy mat.

TOTAL INVESTMENT: About $1500-$2000*
*depending on your deal-seeking skills, how much weight and what you choose for a bike.

With all of this equipment we should be able to do just about anything we want in the gym. Here, Shawn shows us an example of what you can do with a fully equipped gym.



BMX News Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate
BMX Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate

Option 2: “Ballin On A Budget” Home Gym

Most of us don’t have an extra few grand to invest in the baller gym. For just a few hundred you could definitely buy enough equipment to get a great workout.

Ballin On A Budget Equipment List-

Kettle Bell and Trap Bar
Kettlebells – If you look around you can find places that sell kettlebells for about $1/pound. To get started, for the bare minimum you could get away with one bell. Probably a 35 pound bell for men and 25 for women would be a decent starting weight for many exercises. As you get stronger (or have more money) you can get heavier bells or buy pairs of the same bells.

Super Bands – bands are awesome because you can do so much with them. You can make exercises harder or easier depending on how you use them. They could be used for speed training, core work, pushing, pulling exercises, etc…

Furniture Sliders – For about $6 you can find a pack of these at your local hardware store. They can be used to move a couch across your carpet or we can use them for tons of different exercises.

With a little creativity and a sound understanding of basic exercise principles you can get a killer workout with very little equipment. In this video I show you several exercises that you could pull off in your home with less than $100 of equipment.

TOTAL INVESTMENT: $100-$300*
*depending on your deal-seeking skills, and if you want various kettlebell options




If you spent all your money on race entry fees and can’t afford any equipment, don’t worry. Many of the strongest pound for pound athletes in the world get strong by doing bodyweight exercises. Gymnasts can do things with their body that some of the most jacked lifters could only dream of.

Push-Ups, Pull-Ups, Single Leg Squat and core exercises are all great things to master, before you ever need to lift any weights.

Whatever your budget, you have no excuses for not doing your strength training. Not only will it make you faster, it also makes you more resilient for when you take a good crash. Remember – strong people are harder to kill!

-Jake Stephenitch with Shawn DiPrete

Links

Spark BMX Training Website

DiPrete Strength & Power

Building a Perfect Home Gym

June 20, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Creating a Home Gym
By Jake Stephenitch and Shawn DiPrete

You know that home trend a few years ago where everyone wanted a man cave in their house? They would plaster everything in sight with their favorite sports team souvenirs. Decorative beer collectibles. Maybe a Reggie Miller signed jersey. Blackhawks ceiling fan. You know, all the essentials.

This year Shawn DiPrete and I are starting our own trend – replacing all that junk with a sweet home gym. A place of your own to do really high quality strength training without breaking the bank. Instead of spending a ton of money on one of those multi station machines that don’t really work all that well, let us show you some better options.

Option 1: The Mega Baller Home Gym
The Mega Baller Home Gym is awesome if you have some extra space and a bunch of money to spend. You will have the benefit of being able to do all of your training from the comfort of your own home without those creepy naked guys in the locker rooms. Basements can be a particularly good place to put a gym because the temperature is usually perfect for training year-round. You could also put the equipment in a garage and possibly catch the attention of a cute girl walking her dog in front of your house as you Squat shirtless.

Baller Equipment List

Power Rack (squat rack) -craigslist/Rogue fitness

Olympic Barbell and weights – Craigslist

Dumb Bells – Craigslist (usually $.50/pound)

Trap Bar(hex bar) – Craigslist/Perform Better

Flat Bench – Craigslist/Rogue Fitness

Resistance Bands – EliteFTS/Rogue Fitness

TRX or Suspension trainer or Gymnastic Rings (much cheaper than suspension trainers) – Craigslist/TRX/Perform better

AB Wheel-Target 
Plyo Boxes – Do it yourself (I recommend building them in three-dimensional sizes) example the ones I have at my gym are 30x36x42 http://www.artofmanliness.com/2015/07/21/how-to-make-a-plyometric-box/

Medicine balls – Rogue Fitness/Perform Better

Chin up/Pull up bar – DIY, or comes with power rack

Bike for conditioning (Schwinn Airdyne, Spin bike, Rollers, trainer)

Gym Flooring – Horse stall mats from your local farm supply store are about $30 for a 4′x6′ super heavy mat.

TOTAL INVESTMENT: About $1500-$2000*
*depending on your deal-seeking skills, how much weight and what you choose for a bike.

With all of this equipment we should be able to do just about anything we want in the gym. Here, Shawn shows us an example of what you can do with a fully equipped gym.



BMX News Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate
BMX Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate

Option 2: “Ballin On A Budget” Home Gym

Most of us don’t have an extra few grand to invest in the baller gym. For just a few hundred you could definitely buy enough equipment to get a great workout.

Ballin On A Budget Equipment List-

Kettle Bell and Trap Bar
Kettlebells – If you look around you can find places that sell kettlebells for about $1/pound. To get started, for the bare minimum you could get away with one bell. Probably a 35 pound bell for men and 25 for women would be a decent starting weight for many exercises. As you get stronger (or have more money) you can get heavier bells or buy pairs of the same bells.

Super Bands – bands are awesome because you can do so much with them. You can make exercises harder or easier depending on how you use them. They could be used for speed training, core work, pushing, pulling exercises, etc…

Furniture Sliders – For about $6 you can find a pack of these at your local hardware store. They can be used to move a couch across your carpet or we can use them for tons of different exercises.

With a little creativity and a sound understanding of basic exercise principles you can get a killer workout with very little equipment. In this video I show you several exercises that you could pull off in your home with less than $100 of equipment.

TOTAL INVESTMENT: $100-$300*
*depending on your deal-seeking skills, and if you want various kettlebell options




If you spent all your money on race entry fees and can’t afford any equipment, don’t worry. Many of the strongest pound for pound athletes in the world get strong by doing bodyweight exercises. Gymnasts can do things with their body that some of the most jacked lifters could only dream of.

Push-Ups, Pull-Ups, Single Leg Squat and core exercises are all great things to master, before you ever need to lift any weights.

Whatever your budget, you have no excuses for not doing your strength training. Not only will it make you faster, it also makes you more resilient for when you take a good crash. Remember – strong people are harder to kill!

-Jake Stephenitch with Shawn DiPrete

Links

Spark BMX Training Website

DiPrete Strength & Power

To Quit or Not to Quit: That is the Question

May 23, 2016 by · Comments Off 

To Quit or Not to QuitBy Heather Parker, with Dr. Jason Richardson

When BMX families drift out of the sport, it seems that parents are the ones who struggle with a feeling of loss when their kid calls it quits. Traveling to new places, the excitement of the race, and especially the friends that become like family Read more

12 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Clinic

March 30, 2016 by · Comments Off 

12 Ways to Get the Most Out of a Clinic
By Donny Robinson

Thousands of BMX racers each year sign up for clinics to help improve their riding and raceday prep. Some are led by the track coach, some by local experts and/or pros, and others by fly-in pros or on-the-road factory teams. Each has their own unique appeal Read more

DiPrete: Advanced Power Workout

March 23, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Shawn DiPrete Advanced Power Workout

We had great response to the Shawn DiPrete in-the-gym article we posted a couple weeks back here in the Pro Gate Training & Coaching Section. Today, Shawn’s back with an “Advanced Power Workout” that will get the fibers firing, and the burn burning. With the outdoor season about to jump off in the east-of-the-Mississippi local scene, as well as being here-to-stay in the National scene for the next eight months or so, make time to get in the gym and work in those power workouts to prime yourself up for the tough laps.



Advanced Power Workout – Details

Exercise 1 – Kneeling Jumps to Vertical Jumps w/PVC (takes the arm swing out)
3-6 sets of 2-4 reps
Trains: strength/power in the hips
Helps with: gate starts

Exercise 2 – Depth Jumps to medicine ball, Push Press for height
3-6 sets of 2-4 reps
*Tip: Don’t go too heavy on ball or too high on box
Trains: full body power
Helps with: training gates/first straights and sprinting

Exercise 3 – Dynamic Box Squats w/Chains
6-12 sets of 2-3 reps
Trains: Lower body Power/Explosivness
Helps with: Sprinting, gates and first-straight pull

Exercise 4-Banded Kettlebell Swings
3-5 sets of4-8 reps
Trains: Lower body strength/power in hips, glutes and hamstrings
Helps with: gates and sprints

We feel stronger, just having watched this, even with a five-shot latte in hand (we’re obviously not training for the on-track win like you should be). Thanks Shawn! We look forward to your next contribution.

Links

DiPrete Strength & Power

BlackCrown Products



BMX News Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate
BMX Training and Coaching, Presented by Pro Gate

Shawn DiPrete Takes Us to the Gym

March 7, 2016 by · Comments Off 

Shawn DiPrete Takes us in the Gym

Since opening DiPrete Strength & Power last year, Shawn DiPrete has been training some of the top riders in the Northeast to get strong and go long. In this week’s Training & Coaching section, we drop in on Shawn for some personal time in the gym, to give us a glimpse Read more

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