Tuesday, September 23, 2008

register now for our last series of 2008 clinics!

What a season! To date, almost 400 riders have participated in our various skills clinics. It's so gratifying to hear the feedback and follow-up from participants who credit our clinics with changing their cycling lives and helping them achieve their goals.

"It was a great experience. As I look back at all I learned, I can't believe how much I took away that I never expected. Great job - thanks so much for offering to everyday cyclists!"

"We were all there to learn something regardless of skill level -- a good non-threatening environment."

"Given the reputation of the Velo Girls, my expectations going into the clinic were very high. That being said, the clinic exceeded all of my expectations. I couldn't have been more pleased with what I learned and with how the material was presented to us."

"There were so many things that I learned that after riding for 20+ years I never knew about - it was fantastic to better hone the skills."

"I felt like the tips and suggestions I got that were specific to me were very useful. Even though I was sharing the coaches' time with the other group members, I felt as though I was getting my own little coaching session too."

"We had the most excellent training over this weekend and a great value for the money spent. I can go on and on. This weekend was life changing for me and I think the group as a whole. Thanks for doing what you do, you help make lives better."

"I wanted to personally thank you for your efforts this past weekend. I was extremely impressed by the Girls Got Skills program -- both how you broke down each skill and then how each skill we accomplished built successively on the next. Then of course the program moved on to practical application of those skills."

"I was very, very impressed, and of course motivated to ride even more as a result. Certainly one of the best coaching/teaching experiences I have ever been a part of (of any kind)."

"Thank you for developing such a wonderful program. I am sure many, many women have found their passion/new hobbies as a direct result of this incredible program."

We've got three clinics left on the 2008 calendar, and on-line registration is now open:


Bike Skills 101 sponsored by BicycleLawyer.com -- Individual Bike Handling -- Oct. 26th (co-ed)

This clinic is the foundation of everything else you'll learn on the bike. This is the clinic where we teach the old dogs new tricks. You'll learn about balance and weight distribution and how that affects your ability to ride your bike safely and confidently. We'll learn skills like riding with no hands, emergency stops, and how to look behind you while holding your line, how to steer, and counter-steer. After just four hours, we guarantee you'll be a better bike handler and have much more fun on the bike.

Bike Skills 201 -- Climbing & Descending -- November 8th (co-ed)

What goes up must come down, right? In this 4-hour clinic, we'll teach you how to climb like a pro - seated climbs, standing climbs, short climbs, steep climbs, extended climbs. And then, we'll teach you how to come back down again, focusing on a fast straight descent, and then a technical switchbacky descent. Pre-requisite: Bike Skills 101 or equivalent experience (this is not a beginner clinic).

Bike Skills 301 -- Group Riding -- November 15th (co-ed)

Whether you're a racer or a recreational rider, group riding skills will help you ride longer, faster, and farther. We'll learn draft theory, communication and the skills to ride with 2 riders or 20, starting with basic pacelines, and progressing to more complex group riding skills and introductory racing techniques. Pre-requisite: Bike Skills 101 or equivalent experience (this is not a beginner clinic).

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Cyclocross and Mountain Bike Clinics this Weekend!

Wow! This has been the year for Velo Girls clinics. Every weekend we've had sold-out road clinics for both women and men.

This weekend, we switch the focus to the dirt. I'll be co-coaching two new off-road clinics for 2008:

Bike Skills 102 -- Mountain Bike Skills (co-ed)
Saturday, Sept 13th -- 1:00pm - 5:00pm -- Palo Alto

Ron Castia and I have developed a fabulous clinic that will meet the needs of novice and intermediate mountain bikers alike. Filled with skills, skills, skills, you'll ride away understanding balance, weight distribution, terrain, and equipment., ready to conquer switchbacks and jumps and drops and dirt of all types.

Ron Castia has been riding and racing for 11 years. He's a CAT2 on the road and for cyclocross and a semi-pro mountain bike racer. His mountain bike career highlights include a victories at the 24 Hours of Adrenaline, Sea Otter Classic, and the 24 Hours of Tahoe. He has been mentoring and coaching informally for many years and just received his USA Cycling Coach License.

Ron is the founder, chief cook and bottle washer of the East Bay Cyclists -- InfoVista Cycling.

Bike Skills 103 -- Cyclocross Skills (co-ed)
Saturday, Sept 13th -- 8:00am -- 12:00pm -- San Mateo

Unravel the mysteries of this cult sport. Learn what all the cool kids do to have fun in the fall. We'll teach you to run and jump and fly up hills carrying your bike! We'll mount, dismount, suitcase and shoulder. All you need is a cyclocross or mountain bike, a sense of adventure, and a smile! We'll share information about riding and racing, equipment, and all the other fun stuff this incredible sport involves. Once you've tried it.....you'll be hooked!

Who better to coach a cyclocross clinic than the Mack-Daddy of NorCal Cyclocross, John Funke! John did the full conversion from roadie-ism to cyclocross after moving to Northern California in 1998 and realizing there was much more to life than 100-mile road rides. He races Elite and Masters for Sycip Racing, and occasionally finds his way to the lower steps of the podium in spite of nagging back problems, two young boys, and a rock-star wife. John is the editor and webmaster of the NCNCA Cyclocross Website for fun and works for Fujitsu Labs the rest of the time. His blog is at whatfunk.blogspot.com.

(photo of John by Jon Suzuki -- Missing Link Bicycle Collective)

Registration is limited but there is still space available for both of these clinics -- clickity-click for all the deets:

Velo Girls Coaching Services Clinic Registration.

Monday, September 1, 2008

check your neck

September is Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month.

Go ahead, check your neck -- it just takes a minute!

What to look for:

  • lumps or fullness in the neck
  • swollen lymph nodes
  • difficult swallowing, breathing, or speaking (or a change in your voice).