updated 20th September 2019

Old school or new School

Which is best for cycling performance Old school or new school training methods methods. I have heard these terms being bandied about over the last few years in regard to coaching and training methods .

I didn’t always understand the context they were being spoken of. And to be perfectly honest I got the feeling that in a number of cases neither did the person who was saying it.


So I did what I always do in these cases.. Look it up

And according to the Oxford dictionary here’s what old school means.     “Used, usually approvingly refer to someone or something that is old-fashioned  or traditional”

And from the Longman dictionary it says New school is “using new ideas in a type of music or art:”

Coaching science and art

I suppose as Coaching is believed to be a mix of science and art we could include coaching in the above. So the big question then is which of them is the best approach to coaching?

In my experience some of the lessons I learned as a cyclist or beginner coach ( OLD SCHOOL) are still very relevant so old school is important.

However some things that I have learned even in the last year (NEW SCHOOL) I have found really useful and now use when Coaching athletes so obviously new school is also important.

So is this not confusing? old school new school old school new school which should a coach work from..

Does it work school

Well can I humbly suggest a new School and that is the  “DOES IT WORK SCHOOL”.

What I mean by this is to always follow the “Does it work school” which is usually a combination of the old and new school.

Selecting from either of them what really works well for improving athletes performance.

John Lackeys old school principle

For example an old school principle that John Lackey taught us many years ago was.. “you only get out of the sport what you put into it”

Lackey also advised on getting enough sleep and rest. Another key component of high performance fitness.

This is still so true and endurance athletes need to understand and accept these  principles in regard to training and a sporting lifestyle.

Following old school and new school training principles combined with good coaching and modern sports science programmes and can achieve great improvements.

So select the things from the old school and new school methods that work for you and apply them sensibly.

DSC_3310 Marcel Kittle before stage of Giro in Belfast. New school clothing and bikes with  Old School race Nutrition… Banana in back Pocket

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