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9 Exercises For the Ultimate Cross Country Mountain Bike Training Plan – How to Train Like Nino Schurter

In this article I’m going to give you my cross country mountain bike training plan. And it’s not just any cross country mountain bike training plan.

it’s my goal to provide a number of doable steps I would take myself to get to the next level, whatever that may be. These steps might be used by anybody, including those with race aspirations.

I like my casual rides, and hop on the trail in the weekend. And though I tend to push myself as hard as I can, I get passed enough by riders who’re simply better and fitter than I am. And I’m man enough to say that that stings me to the point to right exactly this article.

And with the purchase of my Cannondale Scalpel Team Replica, I’ve gotten a taste of what it means to go really fast. Now I just need to be able to do that for an extended period, instead of feeling blown out after a couple of minutes. So here goes.

Looking towards Nino Schurter for inspiration

Tony Robbins has taught me to emulate those who are experts in their respective field. So for some expert guidance in the field of cross country mountain biking there’s probably no better person than Nino Schurter, the Swiss scalpel who won a record 10 world championships.

So to get me some of that Nino goodness, I’m simply going to look at what he’s doing, ditch the things I can’t or don’t want to do, and come up with my own plan.

Now obviously I can’t change my genetics, and I’m almost a foot longer than this man, but we have to start somewhere. And I don’t think there’s any other person who’s held more championships titles in any mountain bike discipline than this man. So it’s a good start for sure.

Nino Schurter Cross Country Mountain Bike Circuit Training

Apparently the entire training regimen of Nino is online. Big ‘ol thumbs up for the magic of the internet. So let’s have a look at what it tells us. Below is the entire set of exercises Nino does.

  • Nino basically focuses on his legs, core, and arms, and does 3 of those in a row.
  • He does such a set 3 times, with different exercises, so that’s 9 exercises in a row. Let’s call this a lap.
  • And he does such a lap 3 times as well, for a total of 27 exercises total.
  • Between each individual exercise there’s an active rest, which simulates a descent. The active rest in between an exercise is 20 seconds.
#exercise typedescriptionvideo tutorial
1legkettlebell leg raise; 8 kg. kettlebell on balance ball w. 3 kg. bar; 30 sec. each leglink
leg active recoveryrope jumps w. eyes closed
2coreabb rolout on balance balllink
core active recoverybalance on exercise ball w. eyes closedlink
33. armbalancing shoulder press; 5 kg. alternating dumbell presslink
arm active recoveryjuggling on exercise balllink
4legexercise ball pull inlink
leg active recoveryrope jumps w. eyes closed
5corebalancing Russian twist; 2 kg leg weight w. 6 kg medicine balllink
core active recoverybalance on exercise ball w. eyes closed
6armbalancing triceps dips; 20/25 timeslink
arm active recoveryjuggling on exercise ball
7legtwisting box jumps; 3 kg bar w. 1 foot platformlink
leg active recoveryrope jumps w. eyes closed
8coreexercise ball back extensions; 4 kg dumbell, feet against wall/obstaclelink
core active recoverybalance on exercise ball w. eyes closed
9armbalancing plank pull through; 4 kg cylinder weightlink
arm active recoveryjuggling on exercise ball

Cross Country Mountain Bike Training Plan Adjustments

It’s obvious you’re not going to pull of what Nino is doing. At least not for the first time, and for me, not ever. So there are a number of easy adjustments you could make.

  • adjust the laps: instead of 3, start with 1
  • adjust the exercise time: instead of 1 min, start with 30 or 40 seconds
  • adjust the exercise intensity: if there are weights involved, reduce how heavy they are. If there are exercise or balance balls involved, remove them. If there are a number of iterations involved, reduce the amount.