We all want to be better riders. Weather it’s railing corners faster, learning to jump, muscling up steep technical climbs, or simply reacting to terrain in the blink of an eye and making better line choices. The end game is to keep improving and have a blast doing it.

But just like any physical pursuit, practice alone won’t make perfect. You need to train, because being stronger and fitter will make every other aspect of riding easier. And while we’re all happy to spend hours on the bike working on specific skills, or simply riding around hoping to improve, a more focused approach can bring more rapid results.

If you want to improve your riding but only get the opportunity to ride once or twice a week, keep reading.

It’s a common misconception that top level riders spend all day in the gym and therefore have an advantage over the rest of us who can’t afford the time to train for hours every day. But this simply isn’t true.

In as little as two hours per week, you can do as much off-bike training as some pro riders. By training sensibly you can fill in strength and intensity deficits in a short space of time each week, eliminate areas that are holding you back and reap massive benefits on the bike. We’re not saying it’s going to be easy, but it won’t take the hours of monotonous gym time you might think.

Not only will pull-ups help increase your ability to hold on, they will dramatically improve your riding in other ways too.

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Interval training is hard but it’s the simplest, quickest and most effective route to becoming a faster rider. Coach to the pros Alan Milway shows…