Cycling Center Dallas Blog
Cycling Center Dallas Blog
Here we talk about all things cycling - training, wattage, group rides, bike rallies, triathlons, weather, coaching, coaches, nutrition, ponderings, musings, and equipment! If you have a topic or a question, send us a note and we'll try to answer for you!
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Coach Wharton
16:33

Using Xert's MPA and Time-to-Exhaustion Apps, and the Strain/Focus and BioShift Apps, in REAL-TIME, on my Garmin 1000.


Clients and Prospects;

I've been using XertOnline.Com's ConnectIQ Apps for a couple of weeks now, and I am really excited about what they're telling the cyclist. The MPA as a model for power and duration is really solid, so I built two videos explaining just what's going on, and how it can be used for training. Have a look, and leave your comments on the YouTube channel. 





And here's the work on the Strain/Focus and BioShift Optimizer App. 








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Tracy
17:43

Functional Movement Summit Write up Part 3

Session: “The foot 101”

This session was great.  It brought more life and footmore knowledge to concepts I have already been using, and that I believe are extremely important.  I've always been a big fan of bare foot running as a tool to increase foot and ankle strength.  One piece of information that stuck with me was this:

“There are 206 bones in the body. There are 26 bones in each foot.  52 bones total.  ¼ of all the bones in your body are in your feet”

Your feet are a big deal.  The bottoms of your feet provide the stability to the ground and the signals that are sent to the rest of your body. If things are not right with your feet, that can create a whole host of other issues through your entire body.

In this hands-on session, we looked at the foot structure of a few volunteers with foot issues.  He demonstrated how to check mobility of the calcaneus, metatarsals, and big toe, which we looked for with asymmetries between feet. We then went on to some barefoot mobility and strength exercises, all designed to increase mobility and increased strength of the tensile tissue and bone through all the vectors of force that your foot has to deal with in the real world. We got to watch him demonstrate, then participated in numerous exercises. The foot mobility and strengthening exercises were all done barefoot and included the following:

Inverting and everting the foot in a standing position

Squattingfoot2

Standing on one foot and doing a floor touch

Hopping from side to side.

Hopping forwards and backwards.

Hopping and adding a twist.

Lunging movements in each of the movement planes (sagittal, frontal and transverse)

Hopping in place

Skipping

 A variety of shuffling drills

 

Although nothing was super brand new, I did catch myself thinking at more than one moment during the session, “what a great idea; how come I never thought to do that?”  Working the foot through so many different force planes and force vectors is so much more effective for strength and mobility than simply jogging barefoot, which basically works the foot in just one plane of movement (sagittal).   They are all things that can be done as part of a warmup or in between other things.

 

It left me with some great ideas on how to incorporate them into some of my small group classes in individual sessions to help strengthen, rehab, and prevent foot issues. I also realized that I was neglecting including these things in my own training. And I plan to make use of them for myself as well. 

 

 

 


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Tracy
17:37

Functional Movement Summit Write up Part 2



Day 1 

This was the actually first day of the summit.  All IMG_0787_copy1the vendors were set up, and had some cool stuff they were showing off.  Free Motion was also having a challenge on one of their incliner treadmills to see how many feet you could climb in 5 minutes.  It looked like fun (and hard) and I thought I would probably throw my hat in the ring and try it out before the end of the weekend.

 

Since I registered for this conference, I planned on going to a hands-on session that was titled “Ropes, Bags and Body Weight”; 3 of my favorite methods of core and strength training for multiple reasons. The guy presenting had created a bodyweight and battling ropes training system, and had a video that was available on performbetter.com.  I love the ropes, and had my eyes on a set-up of new sandbags with 7 different grip options that you can adjust the weight of by unzipping and adding fillers to it. I am always looking for new ideas to keep things fun and effective with functional training both for myself and my clients. However, the session was only offered once, and happened to be at the same time as another one-time session given by the speaker from the day before.

 

The speaker I previously mentioned talked about the best practices of the most successful businesses in our industry, and everything he said really resonated with me. Since I decided that I probably needed information and advice on the business side of things more than the training side of things, I switched my plans and decided to attend that session instead. I was OK with it, since one of my concerns with going to “Ropes, Bags and Body Weight” was that I wouldn't learn anything new.  I love the topic, I have already done so much in terms of attending seminars, reading and learning about the practical use of these things.  I have even been in a situation where I went to a day-long course on a similar topic, only to end up teaching the material to those that were in my small group, which was frustrating considering how much I paid to be there.  Ultimately I am well aware that the business side of things is a weak link and my training knowledge is a strong link, so I decided to go to the business talk.  It was great and built upon the session from yesterday as well.  I wrote down a to-do list during the session of things I plan to do to improve my programming, and the structure of class offerings. I also took down the contact info for possible further consulting.

 

There were too many sessions to do a write-up on each one, so I am going share below the few I thought I got them most out of.

 

Session: “Core Connections”

 This was an interesting, hands-on session. The name of the session pretty much summed up what it was about, but we went through numerous movements and got to feel how energy was transferred to the core and opposite sides of the body work together during movement. I got several new ideas for exercises, and particularly for partners in group exercises. None it was brand-new stuff, but one of the great things about coming to the IMG_0784_copyseminars is it teaches you how to use old movements and concepts you already know in brand-new ways.  This adds variety and fun to sessions as well. The importance of training your body in multiple planes of movements vs traditional crunch and ab machines was discussed, and then we participated in doing some of the movements (which was the fun part).  Several tools and approaches were presented to not only strengthen the core, but to improve power transfer through the middle and the way the opposing sides of the body work together to generate force and provide stability. Some of the movements we can to experience included:

Passing items to each other while holding the straight arm plank position.

Chops with an elastic band - one partner anchors the band overhead and the other perform a full body chop toward the group, including a split squat of the lower body.

Medicine ball rotational passes which included the split-squat movement.


I was also introduced to, and played with, a new toy I had not yet heard of, called the active motion bar. It was really fun to work with and adds a new concept to traditional bars.  Check out the video that explains what it is.  



I ordered one and when I go it I liked it so much I went ahead and ordered the rest of the set.  Come on by for a small group class or private session if you want to try it out! 


 



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Tracy
08:47

Functional Movement Summit Write up


I have separated the blog into two separate blogs. The blog tab on the main menu of the website will now drop down into a Cycling Training blog and a Strength Training and TRX blog. Not those of you who only want one information on one or the other, don’t have to sort through blog post on both topics. Richard will be the main contributor to the cycling blog, and will be putting out some really great content on the Xert software, the Moxy, and Q and QXL rings. I will be posting content on strength training, TRX, functional training for cyclists, and related stuff.

The Summit 

Last weekend I attended the Functional Movement Summit, in Orlando Fl.  It was four days of Class IMG_0775_copyA presenters giving sessions on topics such as the importance of the foot, evolution of the squat, reducing clients’ back pain, and the “why” behind what we do in functional movement training.  There were also several sessions with information on providing a better experience to clients and the business side of running a top notch studio.  I was already familiar with several of the presenters, through books and DVDs they had released, and I was super-exited to learn more from them in person.   


I decided to write this up, not only to let you guys know about some of the cool stuff I learned and will bring to our sessions and classes.  But also, because it was so much information, this will help me remember more of it, and give me a chance to go through it all again now that I am back home.


Thursday’s pre-conference lectures consisted of two 2 ½ hour lectures.  One of them was given by Gray Cook, who is one of the original developers of the software that I frequently use to help spot movement dysfunction, and which gives me some direction on correcting the problems (this is the system I use at the studio to identify and fix bad movement patterns; many of you may have had a workout with me already in which this software was used).  This lecture was great; I learned about several new screens for motor control and postural integrity that I plan on utilizing for certain populations.  He is also rolling out a new course on these two subjects, which I fully intend to take at some point in the future.   I have seen him lecture several times, and I have spent numerous hours watching his training videos. Yet every time I hear him I feel like I learn completely new things (as well as new ways to use old things).


The bottom line here is that every person is an individual with individual strengths, weaknesses, and possible issues.  No matter what their goal, or limitation, or deficiency, there is no one size program that will be the most effective for everybody.  His approach is all about solving each individual case by looking at all of the layers that make up that particular individual, to find the best path to get them to where they want and they need to be (improved performance, just feeling better, moving better or preventing injuries in the future).  


To illustrate this, he used the example of a volunteer from the audience who wanted to increase his IMG_0766_copyvertical jump to enable him to dunk a basketball (the volunteer was once able to dunk, but now cannot).  It was clearly a hit to his ego, and that was a big deal to him. After running through the assessments, it was determined that although the basic movement patterns were functional, he had some moderate pain and mobility limitations in his right ankle joint. These prevented him from being able to perform an effective counter movement before the jump to make use of the elastic energy.   It was amazing to see him work through the process, like fixing a car by looking first at each individual part, and then analyzing how each part interacts with all of the other parts, in order to identify the source of the problem. To truly fix a movement problem, you need to look beyond the symptom of the problem, and peel the layers off one by one until the problem is identified.  Some of the approaches to improving movement and poster seemed so obvious after seeing them. Such as the examples he used of one arm carries from overhead to down by your side, and the farmers walk, which is a two arm carry. 


The next lecture was presented by a guy named Rick Mayo. He runs a successful studio that is a larger version of the TRX and Strength Corner I have at Cycling Center Dallas.   I share his philosophy, and have implemented in my space at CCD many of the things he does, so it was a relief to see that I have been on the right path all along.  His studio does have some systems that I felt were better organized than those which I have right now, so I plan to use what I learned about his systems to better organize, program and structure the workouts I will use for small group classes from now on.  He also had some great tips about marketing through Facebook, so I intend to get some more relevant content and information out for you guys through our FB page.   I enjoyed his talk so much, and got so much valuable information from it, that I chose to attend his lecture the following morning rather than the sessions I had previously decided to attend.

Posts on the upcoming sessions and more to come....


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Coach Wharton
11:30

Interview with Shindo Salvo of Rotor Components

Last spring, we were grateful for the chance to host Rotor's own Shindo Salvo, as he traveled across the country and spoke to shops and to coaches, discussing the Rotor line of products. Most of you know that I've been intrigued by this company and its' stuff since 1999, and have spoken to the CEO, Pablo, many times as he's released the RSX crank, then the Q and QXL rings, and finally, his own power meters; the RPM, the LT, the RT, and just recently, the InPower and 2InPower. They're all unique, and they all take a thorough approach to understanding wattage, cycling, pedal stroke and analysis, and other great ideas and products. 

But people still have questions, and cycling is a sport full of skeptics. Me? Well, I'm a believer, but only after I did years of my own research, looking at how the RSX and then the Q Rings affected net torque curves on my CompuTrainer SpinScan. More recently, thanks to the contributions of Dr. Christie O'Hara, InPower now shows net torque curves on their own software, which then explains where you should position your Q or QXL chainring for Optimal power output. I routinely see about 3-8% improvements on my clients, and in fact, we have a DEDICATED INDOOR BIKE with a Rotor InPower crank, that can show the improvement in real-time for a client. Swapping out my drivetrain cranks (I have a round ring, a Q ring and a QXL ring, each on their own crank), takes around 10 minutes, and the cyclists can SEE the effect; we just place them at a known wattage on the CompuTrainer, then measure the output delta on the crank. It's that simple, and it's real, real-time, information. 

So watch these videos, and if you have questions, contact us and ask away!











They're broken up for viewability, but the first one is the full length. I welcome dialogue, and again, if you're "Q" Curious, we'd love to show you how it works in real-time, at the Cycling Center Dallas Studio. Think about it - a $200-300 investment in 1 hour COULD deliver a 3-8% improvement in your power output, just like that. 

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