You've heard, I'm sure, that there is no "right" way to train. So there is not a "right" training program. There is only a training program that works for you. We totally agree with this at Sk8skool... and we want to prove this theory to you.
So, where better place to start than with 10 great world level skaters, as an example ... just to keep it simple.
Bart Swings, Peter Michael, Ewan Fernandez, Gary Heckmann, Alexis Contin, Daniel Niero, Nolan Beddiaf, Andres Jimenez, Felix Rhinen, Paxti Peula.
Now, before all the nerds start arguing about the order of my list, or who I missed out of the list, let me say that it doesn't matter, and that's not the point. 😂 My list is a bit random, and the order is just "what came to me in that moment".
But the main point is that these skaters have (for the most part) different coaches, and different training programs. They have ALL had a very different paths to the top. And they all had different coaches 10 years ago before they were famous. Similarities, of course, are there, some key things are essential to elite speedskating performance. However, if you got all their coaches in a room, and had a training discussion, then you'd probably have one very intersting and energetic discussion after a while, and quite possibly more differences than agreements. (when we get down to the 'details'. )
Of course, you need to do a certain % of aerobic base training, a certain % of speed work, a certain % of endurance work, threshold work, VO2max intervals, technique work, etc etc... But anybody that can read, can find that out. And again, all those coaches of the top 10 in the world will have a slightly different opinion.
So, how does this affect YOU?
Well, first of all there is no "magic training program". It doesn't exist. Secondly, making mistakes is important. If you never make a mistake, then you don't learn very much. Great athletes make a lot of mistakes early on, and they learn from those mistakes quickly. And then they improve. But they make less mistakes later in their career. But YOU only see them LATER in their career when they are not making so many mistakes. So, this tells us; Don't train like the superstars do, train like they USED to do when they were coming up.
Thirdly, the overwhelming factor to success is the 'X' factor. (No, not the atrocious tv program) The 'X' factor is not just genetic talent. It's not just "having good genes". It's a lot of mental factors, self-confidence, unfaltering self belief, 'drive', stubbornness, and an unbreakable will to win.
You can learn these traits. But it's not easy.
This is where your coach can be extremely valuable. Not for writing the intervals, or the bike ride intensity, nor the core training nor the technique work... but believing in you, and giving you confidence in your program,yoru direction and in yourself. Helping you with motivation, and objective feedback. Being an emotional "sounding board" (or human mirror) is probably one of the most important traits in a coach.
At Sk8skool we understand this. And we try to deliver exactly what the athlete is looking for; Technique analysis, methods to change technique, intervals guidance, aerobic base conditioning, etc etc etc... Then we work with the athlete to find a training program that works for them in their life. This is why we have so much experience doing this. Because over the last 10 years online, and the last 30+ years in real life, we have coached over 1000 skaters in over 47 countries around the world. With all different lifestyles and fifferent cultures. (Along with the different challenges and problems that brings).
In addition (like all of the good coaches of those top 10 skaters above) we use our experience with sports psychology tools to deliver the right motivation at the right time, deliver self-belief, self-confidence and help our athletes to be mentally stronger. This, we believe is an essential part of a coaches role.
Have a great week,
Lets go faster,