Review: Gounded Freestyle Focus Session


Just a quick post to say how much I enjoyed the Grounded Freestyle Coaching Focus session with Dave Seeley on Saturday evening.  This was a short 3 hour session where you let Dave and his supporting coaches know what trick or tricks you want to work on and then you focus on that until you’ve got it nailed.  A slight deviation from his day courses, there’s no warm-up or basic skill work just straight into working on your areas for desired progression.

There was a nicely shaped kicker and 2 boxes out for the us to play on and 8 riders with 2 coaches available for help and guidance.  Some of the riders were working on both kickers and the boxes but I decided to stick just to the box as I really wanted to get some key tricks dialled.  The SCUK box was set up to give both ride-on and side-hits which was perfect for what I wanted.  My goals for the session were to work on side-hits and front-side boardslides.  After a couple of warm-up hits doing side on 50-50 (which I struggle with) I did a couple of nice ones and Dave moved me on to side on tail press.  I can do these alright, weirdly I find it easier to do these than I do 50:50, so we moved swiftly on to the side-on frontsides.  Dave got me to do a couple of them just by riding on to get the key positions dialled and then we moved back to hitting from the side.  I had a couple of bails and a couple of near misses but by lapping the box and just practicing the same trick hit after hit I soon managed to get the timing and feel for where my body and board should be.  Dave was on hand with the video camera so hopefully he managed to catch some of the ones where I did ok as opposed to looking like a flayling monkey.

2 hours into the course, 1 litre of water and half a banana & bran muffin later I was feeling quite confident (and a lot less scared) and am now looking forward to giving this trick a go on the gas pipes of evilness at SNO!zone MK.  I’m sure if I manage to focus on the feelings I learnt on Saturday I can overlook the slipperiness and extra opportunites for edge-catching that the ribbed pipes offer and nail this trick at my home slope.

As both Dave and I were happy with how the frontsides had gone we moved on to my next trick on the list.  Side-on boardslide/nose-slide from the right.  As I’m a regular rider this means lining up for the trick with the box behind me, which means taking off my heel edge. This is not something that comes naturally to me and so the last hour was a bit of a struggle.  I definitely need to practice ollying off my heels as I was either popping 2 footed (and then not committing enough to getting my weight over my left foot and the box) or in one instance nollying into it (again with a lack of committment).  So this is still one to work on.  Thankfully though Dave gave me enought feedback that at least I know how to do it and where I was going wrong.  As they say, practice makes perfect, so hopefully by the next time I do one of the Grounded courses I’ll be ready to work on something new.

If you’re looking for some solid coaching that ensures you have things right before you move on to the next trick in your arsenal then I can certainly recommend Ground Freestyle Coaching.  Not only do they make sure you’ve got the basics right but they make sure that you get the tricks as close to perfect as you can, thereby ensuring you’ve got good skills to build on and don’t get held back by poor technique or bad habits.

Take a look at their up-coming courses and get booked in, you won’t regret it!

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