Through our Spinning® Business Success Story contest, we learned of one phenomenal instructor who launched power-based training into her facility. The end result, both for YMCA instructor Diane Macera, her instructor team, as well as her members, is nothing short of inspirational. Read on to learn how Diane converted a non-power Spinning® program to one that runs on 26 Spinner® Chrono™ Power bikes with 16 instructors.
Last year, Diane was tasked with finding new bikes for the Ocean Community Westerly YMCA facility. Based in a Rhode Island town that booms in the summer months with Spinning® enthusiasts from bigger metropolitan areas, Diane knew that whatever bike she went with would have to offer an innovative Spinning® solution for her gym. When she found the Spinner® Chrono™ Power, her search came to an abrupt end. The Chrono’s cogged timing belt and direct and accurate power measurement technology would ensure that her YMCA offered just as much punch as the bigger city gyms her riders were accustomed to.
A Powerful Roll-out
What makes Diane’s story so compelling is the way she rolled out the program to address her members’ needs. In her contest entry, Diane comments: “We feared some members might be intimidated with the idea of having true accountability when they ride. I was even nervous that some of the veteran teachers would resist using this technology.” However, in the process of debunking (both for her teammates as well as gym-goers) the common myth that riding with power is only for elite cyclists, Diane happened upon her wisest implementation and roll-out strategies.
Diane needed to ensure that all 16 instructors knew how to use the bikes to their full potential. Diane arranged to host the SPINPower® Certification for her team, and Mad Dogg sent in a Master Instructor to lead the training. The team then collaborated on how to take the science and practical skills they had learned and effectively roll it out to members. With 35 classes each week, they mapped out a gradual, steady rollout of all the knowledge they’d acquired, offering enough information in each class to engage the riders though not overwhelm them.
For the first two weeks, the team focused on having riders associate their rating of perceived exertion (RPE) to their power output, so that they would get a “feel” for training ranges. Then they implemented Personal Spinning® Threshold (PST) testing for two weeks so that riders could establish their personalized, accurate training zones.
Diane recalls what happened at this juncture: “The members were eager to take the next step (with PST testing) to see how it gets them closer to their true, effective working zones.” She adds, “Today I am happy to report almost all our members have taken the PST test and LOVE the use of zones.” By easing everyone – teammates and gym members included – into riding on power-based bikes through a well-devised plan, Diane made power accessible to all, not to mention easy and fun to work with!
|DIANE’S 3-STEP GUIDE TO LAUNCHING SPINPOWER®|
Weeks 1 & 2:
Introduce power through rating of perception (RPE).
Weeks 3 & 4:
Implement PST (Personal Spinning® Threshold) testing with riders so that they know their true training zones.
Diane recommends peppering regularly scheduled classes with tests, so that riders have numerous opportunities to partake in testing – even more than once.
Weeks 4 & Beyond:
Post a large SPINPower® zone chart in the studio so that members can learn their personalized training zones in watts.
YMCA Riders Embraced the Change
Rider Terry Hiltz’s experience with PST testing under Diane’s direction is the perfect example of facility success. A New England cyclist who rides indoors in the winter months, Terry notes, “Each year, as spring arrives and I begin riding outdoors, I am always unsure how much of my Spinning® regimen has contributed to cycling strength and endurance.” And yet this year, due to the specificity of PST testing, he’s planning to ride into the spring with confidence, power and strength. Through Diane’s methodical approach to PST testing, Terry was able to assess his personal threshold three times. That’s the beauty of the PST test. Designed specifically for the Spinning® program on a Spin® bike, the test can be replicated under the same conditions to show fitness progress. In the end, with consistent SPINPower® zone training, Terry was able to see his PST increase, and had gained the knowledge to confidently train (and recover!) in the appropriate zones. Yes, we agree, Terry. You will indeed be ready for outdoor rides this spring.
Another class veteran , Ted Spencer, also concurred that Diane’s power-based programming made the grade. He mentions, “For me personally, targeting my PST and being educated on the process in much more detail has helped my riding incredibly. Simply put, Diane has revolutionized the Spin® Program, educated new and experienced riders to be more efficient, and has prevented over-training. Moreover, Diane has not only made the Spin® classes more interesting, but has maintained great structured classes which are fun.” Awesome Ted, we are more than happy to hear it.
Creating an Enriching Riding Experience
Diane and her team are also now clear on the next step the Y will take to engage riders even more concretely with power. She’s eager to get riders set up with the Spinning Connect® App so they can officially track improvements. (Rider history is contained in the app.)
To take their efforts one step further, the gym is also exploring Spivi and PIQ leaderboard systems, whereby PST testing is integrated into the technology. Diane suggests that this will foster an elevated level of rider engagement – a completely individualized yet community-oriented experience.
Takeaways from Diane’s Success Story
Diane’s SPINPower® story inspired us. You too? Here's what you will learn with your own SPINPower® Online Certification:
1. Confidently describe the benefits of power-based training to riders of all levels.
2. Explain why Spinner® bikes measure actual power and accurate, not estimated caloric expenditure.
3. Conduct ramp tests in class to help riders identify their Personal Spinning®Threshold (PST).
With this knowledge in your tool kit, you will be able to provide the most effective way to train on the market today. Join Diane and make power training a key ingredient of your success.