Bikejames Podcast



The Podcast for the MTB Strength Training System, the world's original and best strength and conditioning system designed exclusively for mountain bikers.


  • In Defense Of Dumbbells, Breathing & Functional Movement and How Narrow Is Too Narrow With Handlebars

    12/09/2022 Duración: 42min

    I’ve got a new podcast for you today covering some important topics to help improve your training and riding. In it I’ll be sharing my thoughts on dumbbells for MTB specific training, the findings of a study that looked at breathing patterns and functional movement, plus I’ll answer a rider’s question about how narrow is too narrow when it comes to handlebars. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ You can also check out the notes below in case you don’t have time to listen to the podcast. Training - In Defense of Dumbbells I’ve used both tools extensively over my training career and while kettlebells are a great tool, there are some things that I think the dumbbell does better. Here are 3 things I think dumbbells are still a valuable tool for the mountain biker to use. The DB Cheat Curl is a better power movement than KB Swings By using a narr

  • Medical Preparedness For Mountain Biking With Brian McLaughlin

    28/02/2022 Duración: 57min

    While most riders understand the need for better technical skills to ride with more confidence and improve their safety on the trail, few understand the need for basic medical skills to improve these things as well. There are a lot of reasons for this lack of understanding, including lack of coverage in the mountain biking media and misunderstandings about what you need to learn and carry. But the end result is that, as a group, we are woefully unprepared to handle a traumatic injury situation. I know because up until  a year or so ago I was one of those riders. Ignorant about how easy it was to learn what I needed to know and how inexpensive it was to have a few tools to help, I went on countless rides where if something had gone wrong it could have been a disaster. Luckily I came upon some great resources to help me improve my medical preparedness, including the company Mountain Man Medical ( Their mission is to help prepare as many people as possible to be able to pro

  • Better Breathing As Easy As LSD

    31/01/2022 Duración: 44min

    Last week I gave a talk about better breathing at my friend’s chiropractic office. He runs a comprehensive wellness center along with his chiropractic practice and had asked me to share some of the things I had been telling him about how breathing can impact your health, performance and mindset.   And while I was excited to do it I was also a bit nervous because it had been a couple of months since I had stood in front of a bunch of people and talked about the impact of better breathing. I knew the material but I had to check my notes bunch and I didn’t feel like the material flowed.   So I decided to practice my presentation on FaceBook Live from the MTB Strength Training Systems page. I’ve always enjoyed the chance to share stuff with people who may tune in live and so it seemed like a good way to practice my presentation while also sharing some great info with my fellow riders.   In this webinar I explained how your breathing can impact you both positively and negatively. I also shared some ways you

  • Lessons From 2021 - A Recap Of My Best Posts And Takeaways From Them

    30/12/2021 Duración: 52min

    Well, another year is just about in the books. I think that most of us have had another interesting year with the on again/ off again pandemic and all of the changes it has brought to our lives. However, as much as some things change, others stay the same and I kept bringing you posts and info you couldn’t find anywhere else to help you improve on and off the bike.   In this last post of the year I wanted to finish with a podcast recapping the best lessons I learned over the last year. Taking some time to reflect on these things is a great way to get ready for the new year and I wanted to share my reflections with you.   You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌  ‌ USE‌ ‌IN‌ ‌NEWSLETTER:‌ ‌ Click‌ ‌Here‌ ‌to‌ ‌Stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌Download‌ ‌This‌ ‌Podcast‌ ‌Episode‌ ‌   If I’ve been able to help you in any way this year it has been my honor. Coa

  • Chemistry and Consciousness: How Breathing Is The Key To Improved Performance and Mindset

    20/12/2021 Duración: 30min

    In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast I look at how your internal chemistry affects your consciousness and how you can use breathing to affect both. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ As much as we hate to admit it, our internal chemistry will affect your consciousness - which affects your performance on the bike and in life - and without having an understanding of this and a plan for how to control it then you are leaving it to chance. Getting a better understanding of this and the tools to do something had made a big impact on my performance and mindset and while I know that it isn’t something that everyone will connect with, I know that some of you need this type of info more than you need another core training exercise or workout routine. I hope this podcast is the spark that you need to start paying more attention to this forgotte

  • Do You Know Fear? Interview with SPEAR System Founder Tony Blauer

    19/10/2021 Duración: 59min

    In this podcast I interview Tony Blauer, who is the creator of the SPEAR System of self defense. As part of his system Tony has done a lot of work in helping people to understand the psychology of fear and how it can be used to help them overcome it. Something that a lot of people don’t realize is that the same mental tools you need to survive a self defense situation are the same mental tools you need to improve on your bike and even to succeed in life. This makes knowing how to stop fear from holding you back a vital tool for your success.  In this podcast interview we discuss why people who are “anti-violence” should still think about self defense, the Cycle of Behavior that fear causes and practical steps you can take to become better at managing the Fear Loop. You can find out more about Tony and his SPEAR System at You can also download his free report Making Friends with Fear at 

  • Better Braking for Faster Riding - Interview With Brake Ace Creator Matt Miller

    28/06/2021 Duración: 01h45s

    In this podcast I interview the creator of the Brake Ace system Matt Miller. Matt is the only person I know who literally has a Ph.D. in mountain biking and during his research for his doctorate he gained some really interesting insights into what it takes to be a faster rider. While the main topic we cover is how focusing on your braking efficiency can be the missing link for a lot of riders, we also cover a lot of other topics that can help you improve. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ You can find out more about Matt at, the Brake Ace system and check out his podcast at BTW, there are a couple of spots where I lost my train of thought while I was on a tangent based on some interesting stuff Matt talked about. I was going to edit them out but then I realized that it

  • Mountain Bike Injury Study - What We Can Lean From The Stats

    21/06/2021 Duración: 54min

    In this podcast I review the findings of a 2017 study on mountain biking injuries and give you my recommendations based on them for avoiding the most common injury patterns. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ Some people look at injury studies like this with a fatalistic approach of “that’s just how it is and there is nothing we can do to significantly change things”. I look at them and say “if people are getting hurt at a higher than normal rate, is there something we are doing wrong that is leading to it”? Running Shoes is a good example of this - small changes to the status quo vs. a paradigm shift in how we look at running. Is the industry getting it all wrong with the equipment and techniques we promote along with how we promote mountain biking to new riders? Here are my big takeaways from the study linked to below: https://journal

  • Are You Ready For The Unexpected? - Interview with Wilderness Survival Expert Kevin Estela

    14/06/2021 Duración: 35min

    In this podcast I interview Kevin Estela, who is the author of 101 Skills You Need to Survive In The Woods and the Director of Training at Fieldcraft Survival. He is also a martial artist and combines lessons from that area with his extensive background in wilderness and survival skills to give a unique perspective on what it really takes to be ready for the unexpected. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ You can find Kevin online at @estelawilded on Instagram or through the website. In this interview we go over a lot of things that riders should think about when venturing into the wild. From skills and tools to the mindset you need, you’ll come away from this interview with a new perspective on what it really takes to be truly “ready”. Here are some of the questions I asked him... What got you into the whole “

  • Self Defense and Stress Management With Dr. Rodney King

    31/05/2021 Duración: 01h06min

    In this podcast I interview the founder of The School of Crazy Monkey Self Defense, Rodney King. Having both a Doctorate and personal experience on the streets of Johannesburg, South Africa, Coach Rodney understands interpersonal violence from both an academic and personal experience point of view. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ Some of the things we talked about include: How Rodney became a Real World Self Defense expert. Origins of The School of Crazy Monkey. Coach Rodney’s philosophy of self defense Why a lot of what you see on YouTube won’t work. Common mistakes people make in self defense scenarios. Detecting and Avoiding violence. Neurology of Interpersonal Violence and how this affects us physically. How the mindset and tools needed to survive a self defense situation are the same you need to become a better rider. You

  • Performance Breathing for MTB - Taking Your Cardio To The Next Level

    24/05/2021 Duración: 37min

    In this podcast I cover Performance Breathing for MTB and how you can use specific breathing methods and workouts to improve your endurance and ability to focus in high stress situations. You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms. Here are the notes from the podcast: In a previous podcast I covered the basics of Better Breathing for MTB and why you need to focus more on this important part of health and fitness. The 3 Keys to Better Breathing are: Nasal Breathing Breathing with the diaphragm Matching your breathing to your effort level In this podcast I want to focus more on High Performance Breathing and how you can improve your endurance and ability to focus in high stress situations. To do this there are 4 methods you can use: Breathing Gears If you look at your breathing patterns as “gears” then you can see how to use them more effectively. You have 3 basic breathing patterns: Easy: Nose-Nose with a

  • Fear - What's Your Relationship With It.

    17/05/2021 Duración: 39min

    In this podcast I talk about fear, or more specifically, your relationship with it. Learning how to deal with fear is an important part of improving as a mountain biker and understanding how it works and what you can do about it can improve your riding and your life. You‌ ‌can‌ ‌stream‌ ‌or‌ ‌download‌ this episode ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌link‌ ‌below‌ ‌or‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌on‌ ‌‌Itunes‌,‌‌ ‌Podbean‌,‌‌ ‌‌Spotify‌‌ ‌‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌other‌ ‌major‌ ‌podcasting‌ ‌platforms.‌ ‌ Here‌ ‌are‌ ‌the‌ ‌notes‌ ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌podcast...‌ ‌ This last weekend I went to a workshop put on by Tony Blauer, creator of the SPEAR System for self defense. While I learned a lot of easily applicable tools for dealing with a bad guy, I also learned a lot about dealing with fear. Tony uses a flowchart to explain what he calls The Fear Loop and explains how managing it is the key to success. In a self defense situation, getting caught in the Fear Loop will cause you to hesitate or fail to react at all when your life is on the line. In

  • Rider Q&A - Ebikes & Maintaining Your Gainz

    10/05/2021 Duración: 40min

    In this podcast I answer a rider question about e-bikes and another question on how to maintain muscle mass and strength while riding. You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms. Here are the notes from the podcast... Q: “Are e-bikes good or bad for mountain biking?” This isn’t about whether you should get an ebike or not, simply what my opinion of them is. I get a lot of riders who assume I must dislike them since they make things “easier” but that isn’t the case. Like almost everything else in life, when you start talking about ebikes you need to first give your opinion some context. While some people see ebikes as the next best thing to the invention of the “safety cycle” itself, others see it as a sign of the coming apocalypse. It seems to me that the problem is that two people can be talking about the same word and yet be talking about two totally different contexts. On one hand you have the people who se

  • Medical Training for MTB - Dealing With The Inevitable

    03/05/2021 Duración: 34min

    In this podcast I talk about medical training for mountain bikers and why you need to know how to help yourself or a fellow rider. The truth is that what we do is a dangerous sport that usually takes place away from civilization and knowing how to stabilize someone who has suffered a traumatic injury until the real help can arrive is an important skill in the MTB Warrior’s toolbox. You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms. Here are the notes from the podcast... If you ride long enough you are going to crash. If you crash enough eventually you or someone you are riding with is going to get hurt. What we do is dangerous and a lot of the time we are doing it away from civilization where help can take some time to get there. I’ve personally been around a few bad injuries, including a broken neck and kid who fell off a cliff, and I’ve known some riders who had bad puncture wounds, including the femoral artery with

  • The Science of Coaching and Learning Mountain Bike Skills

    26/04/2021 Duración: 01h01min

    In this podcast I explain what makes for good coaching cues when trying to teach and learn skills on your mountain bike (or anywhere else for that matter). There is some fascinating research behind the language you use when thinking about or talking about a movement skill and I hope that you’ll learn something that can make your journey towards improving your skills faster and easier.   You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms.   While I go into these things in a lot more detail in the podcast, here are the notes from it:   One of the most important things you can do as a rider is to invest in your technical skills. The better your skills are the safer you will be, the faster you can ride and the less energy you will use.   However, not all methods of coaching are created equal and some methods are demonstrably better than others. There is some fascinating science around the subject of cueing and teaching

  • Better Breathing for MTB - Improve Your Performance, Recovery & Mindset

    19/04/2021 Duración: 38min

    In this episode of the podcast I explain what makes for better breathing and how it applies on and off the bike. Breathing is something that we take for granted but it can make or break our health and performance. The good news is that while improving your breathing is transformational, it isn’t rocket science once you understand a few basic things.  You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms. In case you can’t listen to the podcast here are some of the things most important things you should know (these are some notes from the podcast): Top 3 Benefits of Better Breathing Better Performance: Increased muscle oxygenation, Improved movement efficiency, Decreased breathlessness during training and performing Better Recovery: Better sleep, decreased inflammation, improved blood pH Better Mindset: Better control of stress, Better focus and concentration, Less performance related anxiety Importance of CO2 for Bett

  • Becoming The MTB Warrior

    12/04/2021 Duración: 44min

    In this podcast I talk about becoming an MTB Warrior, or someone who is able to “bring the others back”. Being the kind of person who can help yourself and others both on and off the trail is something that the world needs more of and something I think we should talk about more as a sport. You can stream or download it from the link below or you can find it on Itunes, Podbean, Spotify and all other major podcasting platforms. The truth is that mountain biking is a hard, dangerous activity. And while the cycling industry keeps working harder and harder to soften the edges and make it as appealing to as many people as possible in an effort to sell as many bikes and accessories as possible, you can’t get rid of all of these elements. Wrecks on the bike and mechanical failures can put you in a position where you will need to know more than the geometry and specs of your bike. You also have to look beyond just the trail and make sure you are prepared to deal with potential issues like vehicles getting stuck in

  • Why You Don’t Want to Use Your Ankles to Absorb Shock on Your Mountain Bike.

    14/09/2020 Duración: 32min

    In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast I tell you why trying to use your ankles to absorb shock on your bike is a bad idea and actually makes it harder for your lower body to absorb shock properly. The notes for it also turned into an article, which you can read below if that works better for you... One of my biggest surprises with bringing the Catalyst Pedal and the mid-foot position it allowed to the MTB world was the push back I got from the skills training industry. It turns out that the vast majority of skills coaches and organizations have bought into the false logic of needing the be on the ball of the foot to move properly on the bike. The logic goes that you need your ankles to help absorb shock and that if you use the mid-foot position then it is like landing a vertical jump with flat feet, which is very jarring and obviously not the way to land a jump. The idea is that the range of motion of the ankle that is giving you the extra shock absorption that is making the difference in the two landing

  • Rider Q&A Podcast - Feet Turned Out On Pedals, Strength Standards & Situational Training

    07/09/2020 Duración: 52min

    In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast I answer some rider questions that I’ve gotten over the last few weeks. They include: Q: Is it alright to turn your feet out on the pedals? Q: What are your new strength standards for MTB? Q: How can I use intervals to train myself to keep pushing past the top of a climb? You can download or stream this episode, as well as see the show notes, by clicking the link below. If you have a question for me send it to and I’ll be happy to help. Nothing is more frustrating than not knowing what to do to help you with your problem and I try to help as many riders as I can avoid that frustration.  Until next time… Ride Strong, James Wilson MTB Strength Training Systems

  • The Power of Better Breathing with Chuck McGee III

    31/08/2020 Duración: 01h16min

    In this episode of the BikeJames Podcast I interview Chuck McGee III, a breathwork specialist from Northern California. Chuck is featured in the book Breath as the man who introduced the author James Nestor to the WIm Hof Method and someone has helped me a lot on my own breathwork journey. In this interview I share some of my own breathwork journey and what got me started down this path and Chuck tells us what most people don’t realize about better breathing, why nasal breathing is the way we were meant to power our efforts, how you can assess your own breathing and the transformational power of taping your mouth at bedtime. We also talk a lot about the Wim Hof Method, which has had a profound effect for both of us and something I now do on a daily basis. You can learn more about Chuck and sign up for his free Monday evening breathwork session at You can learn more about the Wim Hof Method at  Like I say in the beginning of the podcast, in many ways this