Katie recaps the second clinic that the Naked Women’s Cycling team had with professional riders Alison Powers and Jennifer Sharp. In this clinic the ladies learned how to corner, sprint, and start.
After one understands how to balance on a bike the rest appears relatively easy. However, if one starts to race bikes they realize that there is a lot more to it than just spinning both legs in circles. We begin to realize that there is technique that can be learned and practiced.
This past weekend the Naked Women’s cycling team learned from the best. We were fortunate enough to have our second session learning from Alison Powers and Jen Sharp. 15 of my teammates and I showed up to learn about how to become a better crit racer. Some were seasoned racers and others were unsure if they would ever use these skills in a crit but after some nudging from teammates they decided to come out and practice bike handling skills.
We started off the morning practicing riding in a paceline. This is not an easy task with that many people but we were able to function as a team with our coaches helping us into position. This is a critical skill that I am glad we practiced again.
We then proceeded to work on starts, sprinting, and cornering. Cornering was the skill that most ladies said they wanted to work on. Going through a corner at speed with others around you can be a nerve-wracking experience unless you understand the physics behind how to keep your bike upright. They demonstrated how to approach a corner, when to brake, how to exit a corner and how shifting your weight on the bike can really help you maintain a position that is safe. While shifting weight felt awkward initially most of the women were more comfortable with this by the end of the day. We even worked up to cornering with 3 across which was a great skill to practice for those of us wanting to participate in upcoming criteriums.
Every time I attend a clinic I walk away with some additional knowledge and appreciation for the sport. I am so grateful that our team is willing to host clinics like this so we can become more confident riders out on the roads. If you are a female rider and think you would benefit from clinics like this than we welcome you to join our club.