I’ve already mentioned how other disciplines (like pole dancing) can help a rider improve.
There’s one hobby of mine that I would have never thought could help, yet I’ve been able to extract some of the skills from it and transpose them to my riding.
When you live in South-East Asia and you’re a bit adventurous, you’ll probably give diving a go. Well, I’ve tried and I’m now an advanced diver.
Diving is like discovering a whole new world. It’s like the movie Avatar when you uncover something that was there, but you didn’t know about it and you’re in awe of everything you see.
As a basic principle, you never stop breathing when you dive. Whether you’re excited to see this cute little fish or you just realised you forgot to check something on your equipment (hopefully your buddy will have done it for you!): slow, controlled breath. This seems easy because, well, we breath without thinking, right? Well, as any speech specialist would tell you, most of the time we breathe incorrectly. So, breathing, after all, is not so easy!
Second, the peace of mind or the quiet it brings to my mind is a great place to go back to when I’m all over the place while riding. Becoming neutrally buoyant and enjoying the dive silently. Breathe, control your mind, and ride.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, is the fact that fewer movements burn less oxygen but can also bring you further. Being agitated or strongly flapping your legs to go faster might not have the effect intended and you will run out of oxygen faster. Making sure you move with intention and control can change your dive.
Does this sound familiar? Surely this is something we can use while riding!