Well… Where do I start, 7 Days with Ryno Hughes, in my eyes the best MX Coach in the world.
Getting to live, hang out with and ride with Ryno was truly a special experience!
I learned more about riding technique on my dirt bike in the first 4 hours than I had in 30 years of riding! True!
He truly made me a student of the sport. He gave us not just the WHAT, but the HOW and the WHY to be a better rider.
We are all trying to ride our fastest out there on the track, we are all giving 100% effort in most cases.
We are all accelerating and braking as hard as we think we can.
I can tell you to accelerate harder and brake more aggressively!
But why can’t you? Whats holding you back?
In most cases, our technique is holding us back from being able to ride faster.
Ryno breaks down technique like nobody else I know.
I look at riders differently now when I watch them, picking up on their technique, because Ryno taught us what makes the best riders the best. What sets them apart.
I have listed some dot points below of my key take aways but first some of the things that we spoke about at our 3 day camps, and some things Ryno reminded me about whilst we were together.
BE YOUR OWN GURU
I believe there is no right or wrong.
You and I both, only make choices based on our skills, knowledge and experience we have up until this very point in time.
You don’t have to agree with every single thing I say. And hell, you don’t have to agree with every single thing Ryno says about riding either!
But my aim, and I am sure Ryno’s too, is to give every one we work with, more skills, knowledge and experience so they can make better choices moving forward.
You don’t know what you don’t know.
How you Eat now, how you ride now, and how you train now is based on your skills knowledge and experience right now.
So ask yourself, Is it working? Could it be better? Could I perhaps learn some more?
It’s that simple. Ask yourself better questions.
Be your own Guru, don’t follow blindly.
In life in general, and the sport of Motocross especially I see, so many people are stuck in their rut. They think their way is the best and only way.
We get stuck in this rut of “Normal” being OK.
Again, ask yourself, Could it be better?
Ryno spoke about how the best riders in the world, including Ryan Dungey, Eli Tomac and Jeffrey Herlings are quite often the best because they are open to change.
They are constantly trying new things, and looking for ways to improve themselves.
Even Ryno says, the way he rides now, and the technique he teaches is different to the way he rode when he was racing… because the sport and the bikes have evolved so much, so his technique has evolved with it.
He has also evolved himself, becoming a Holistic Life Coach and he weaves these principals into his coaching and overall approach to riding, which is what I love so much about listening to Ryno speak about riding and life in general.
So my advice… learn from as many “Guru’s” as you can! Try new things in every area of your life and take what resonates with you and apply it in YOUR own way!
BE YOUR OWN GURU!
MY KEY TAKE AWAYS
A lot of these things I already knew, but like my own mentor says, “When the student is ready, the teacher will present itself!”
I know this is true! Sometimes we hear, see or read things and they go in 1 ear and out the other. Then 6 months later you re read that book again, or hear something off someone and boom, it’s like a light bulb! The information is the same, but you are a different person, you don’t just hear it, you are truly listening!
So some key take aways, lessons, and reminders for me;
- 5 fundamental technique principals! He gave us the WHY and the HOW not just the WHAT. I feel more educated on riding technique and am certainly thinking more about how I control the bike. Wish I had learned this 30 years ago!
- This also emphasised to me the importance of Strength training for Moto in regards to basic body awareness. One thing I noticed, was the riders who seemed to struggle most keeping good posture on the bike, straight spine, tight core, chest up and open etc, were the riders when I spoke to them that don’t do any strength training. The guys who had good posture, as a rule, had been exposed to some strength training which = Body Awareness.
- Slow down to go fast! When I coach people in the Gym to better their technique and get stronger, this is exactly what we do. We slow things down and work on activation of muscles, and feeling the movement. When technique is on point, and their nervous system has learned the correct motor pattern, then we start to progressively add load/intensity. But…… when I ride, I am always trying to ride as fast as I can! Obviously my technique wasn’t allowing any progress there. This was a big lesson to me, to be more structured with my riding and slow things down sometimes, focus on technique and then the speed will come.
- Feeling the Bike! Again when we train in the Gym a big focus for us is coming into the body, focusing on breathing and feeling the movement and muscles activating, contracting etc. It’s like movement meditation. And like Ryno says, if you are focused on feeling your body and the bike beneath you, it brings you into the present moment, where you will ride at your best, free from outside influence, thoughts or judgement.
- Focus on the immediate, and the ultimate will come! Goals are great, and I feel essential to bring purpose to all of our actions. But, the goal is a moment, and it may be 6 months away. All we have control over is right now, this present moment. So Goals are good, but set your intention daily to move toward your goals. Think about what you can do each and every day, the little things that add up. This takes work, consistency and repetition. Remember we don’t always need to “Work Out” , we also need to “Work In”. You already have the answers, learn to ask yourself better questions!
- And like Ryno says on the track, when it comes to intentions, chase a feeling, not a result. We as humans are driven by emotion, not results. We are driven by the emotion we feel when we achieve a particular result. What you focus on is what you get, so if you don’t want to be anxious on the start line, what do you want? How do you want to feel? When you set your intention, focus on the feeling associated with a particular result. If you want to win, what feelings/emotions will you need to feel to achieve that result? Calm, Present, Focused, Confident, Grateful? If you are feeling all of these things on the startline, then you will perform at your best and your best result will come. If you are sitting on the startline, feeling anxious about a result that hasn’t even taken place yet, guess what, your not present your not focused and your not calm, so you won’t ride to your true potential. When you know you have ridden at your true potential, been fully present and focused, then you have won, regardless of results! Your best is your best. We only go backwards when we compare ourselves to others! Question is are you allowing your true potential to flourish or are you suffocating it?
- More is only more. Like all training, Intent is Key. Again bringing some structure to how we ride and riding/training with a purpose on the bike, not just burning fuel and spinning laps for the sake of it!
- We are not defined by our outcomes, but by our actions, by how we show up. Ryno is a prime example of this, never winning a championship, but how do you perceive him? I see him as someone who never ever gave up and would fight to the end in any challenge. That’s how he showed up, not what he achieved.
- When it comes to training in the Gym, remember to master the basic fundamentals first, just like Ryno says with his riding technique. Having a Strong Core, Posterior chain (back of body) and a solid Mind Body Connection to activate muscle groups and recruit fast twitch muscle fibres is key. Fancy swiss ball exercises are great but you must first master the basics to build strength. Squatting, Hip Hinging (Dead Lifting etc), Upper Body Push and Pull movements horizontal and vertical, Uni Lateral exercises(Lunging), starting with body weight and progressing to bar bells and learning how to brace correctly in your core with breathing techniques should be your main focus before you pump up the swiss ball. Just like becoming fast on the track, getting strong is a process and takes time. Be patient!
- How you do one thing is how you do everything! It’s one of my favorite quotes and one Ryno mentioned many times throughout his coaching. I know it and I say it… but as Ryno pointed out to me was I truly embracing it? He called me out one morning noticing my bed wasn’t made, in my room and was a little untidy. Again I knew, but I needed a little reminder! Take pride in everything you do! The food you eat. The way you move. The way you treat people. It will all come back to you and spill over to every aspect of your life and riding. The little things matter, like making your bed, or cleaning your bike as soon as you get home.
I could go on and on!
I don’t claim to know it all, but I am 100% committed to bettering myself and my clients, so I will continue to learn from the best in the world and apply what I know in my own way.
And I learned a lot I can tell you. Beyond measure.
It cemented my path and my purpose to not just help racers get a trophy, but better themselves in every aspect of life, to lead and inspire people to reach their true potential.
I also learned, I could improve next time… and thats what we will do when Ryno returns early next year March/April 2019.
Massive thanks to Ryno himself, Mel and Steve at AJ’s Motorcycles, Ryno Power Aus, and Paul Bray and Mark Willingham for there help at Motorcycling Victoria/MA. Also DJMCC Wonthaggi, and GVJMCC Mooroopna for the track prep and hire.
Couldn’t have made it happen without any of you.
And of course to all our students who supported us by attending.
We will keep you posted on 2019 dates.
Give it 100%