5 reasons why Enduro will improve your MX skills
A friend and I headed down to an enduro practice day this weekend in the military woodlands of Broxshead. Enduro riding is a totally different style of riding to motocross in terms of speed, but what the enduro tracks lack in average speed and jumps, they gain in technical, tight twisty turns that force you to ride on the pegs, ride in the right gear, and stay 100% focused the whole time.
The average lap time of the track layout was between 12-16 minutes. Within the lap were tight, twisty woodlands where there were trees everywhere, deep sand sections, blind jumps, flat out straights, 100meter ruts and a few boggy pits. A side from this, the track was mapped out with red and white hazard tape with hand sized arrows pointing in the track direction. So what can be learned from riding enduro? The key elements I coach in motocross are feet position on the pegs, body position, riding in the optimal gear, concentration & braking effectively. Speed comes down to the individual's confidence.
In this video: watch Steve Holcombe effortlessly ride his bike over obstacles and tight turns.
Here are just 5 ways, enduro riding will improve your motocross riding. 1. Improve your balance. When you learnt to ride a bicycle, the faster you went the easier it became. For this reason, slowing the pace in tight, twisty and rutty surroundings forces you to put your balance to the test.
2. Strengthen your legs. Have you ever ridden over a tree whilst sat down? Probably not.. and if you did, it probably hurt! In motocross, so many people sit and stand in the wrong places due to tired legs and a weak back. Strengthening these weaknesses in the gym will help, but strengthening them by riding on the pegs for longer will improve your technique massively and will be a lot more fun (seat time and a stronger body)!
3. Feel for the bike. Developing a good feel for the bike comes from bike time and riding in challenging conditions, this is what enduro is about.. Time on the bike over very difficult terrain.
4. Mental awareness. Around a motocross track there is a big element of learning the track involved when it comes to the first laps of a generic flat track, however after 9-10 laps, you could probably draw the circuit out on a piece of paper... Including any jumps and areas where ruts have developed; however, enduro tracks can be so long in distance that every corner can become a guessing game; even after hours of riding. This is why mental awareness and focus is so important, one slip or mistake can put you on the floor, in a boggy mess, a never ending rut or into oncoming riders. Did I mention the track markers? (p2)
5. Improved reactions. Everything covered in 1-4 will contribute to improved reactions on the bike, and adding speed to the equation only heightens these senses. The tight nature and low hanging trees force you to be proactive and move on the bike, because if you don't you'll get hit. So if you're a motocross rider feeling as though you're stuck in a rut with your riding, try an enduro practice day and see for yourself how it can develop your skills on the bike. If you're still stuck, get in touch for a 1-2-1 or small group training day with your friends and I'll help you to improve.
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