Being a newbie to any sport is full of excitement and anticipation, but before you set your sights on winning the prize on the MTB track, you should arm yourself with some basic knowledge of the sport (and a protective ankle brace).
Here are some top tips for any extreme sports novice or pioneering rookie:
Like the infamous song sung by Scar in the Lion King, preparation is definitely key when it comes to tackling any extreme sport.
Due to poor training in the lead-up to the new venture, many beginners succumb to early injuries, putting them off the once promising sport,
Regardless of whether you’re wanting to snowboard, wakeboard or take on any of a number of thrilling action sports, consider implementing the following 4 tips into your training approach:
Athletic newcomers – young and old – love the thrill of the chase and want to push themselves to the limit. But this is not necessarily to their benefit when it comes to extreme sports. High impact landing sports like BMX and skateboarding put a lot of pressure on joints, often leading to injury for rookies. Invest in a quality ankle brace to alleviate the pressure and prevent injury.
Once you’ve put in a decent amount of preparation and training, ease your way into practice and training sessions with experienced instructors or friends who have been active in the sport for a few years. And don’t get ahead of yourself by signing up for every competition or event after only watching hours of watching snowboarding stunts on YouTube, which is likely to make you feel disappointed and demotivated by your skill and progress (or lead to early injury – so invest in an ankle brace).
Rather take it easy and learn from experienced extreme sports athletes and competitions. Take on competitors of similar fitness and skill levels and slowly work your way up to bigger challenges.
Read up on the rules and stick with the regulations for your safety and sanity.
Talk to athletes who have been in the game for a while before splashing out on all the top gear and maxing out your credit card before you’ve fully committed to the sport.
Perhaps there is equipment that you could hire for a month or two before you invest in high-end gear. (For example, hire a basic skateboard or buy a second-hand mountain bike to get you started).
Extreme sports are known to be hard on your body and filled with risk and danger (especially for newcomers). Budgeting for the right equipment also includes appropriate protective gear, to prevent serious injury, protect your joints from the worst bumps and help recover your body (think items like a helmet, ankle brace, wrist guard, compression socks and knee pads).