Free Triathlon Clinics

January 9th, 2012 by Roxane Kippen, USA Triathlon Certified Coach

As part of our sponsorship of the 2012 Grand Rapids Triathlon, Athletic Mentors is offering a number of free clinics. All clinics will lead by Athletic Mentors coaches and staff and held in the front conference room at the David D Hunting YMCA in downtown Grand Rapids. These clinics are open to the public and attendees do not need to be registered for the Grand Rapids Triathlon.

Click here to register for any of the following free clinics:


Triathlon 101 – Jan 21, 9:00am– 10:15am

For athletes new to the sport or considering getting into triathlon

Equipment, training and racing tips, nutrition, transitions and USAT rules


Swim – Technique & Training – Jan 21, 10:30am – 11:30am

Open to all levels, but geared toward athletes looking to step beyond beginner

Swim stroke technique discussions and training recommendations


Bike – Technique & Training – Feb 11, 9:00am – 10:15am

Open to all levels, but geared toward athletes looking to step beyond beginner

Cycling technique and bike fit discussions and training recommendations


Run – Technique & Training – Feb 11, 10:30am – 11:30am

Open to all levels, but geared toward athletes looking to step beyond beginner

Running technique discussions and training recommendations, including bricks


Women’s Panel Discussion ‚Äì Mar 10, 9:00am ‚Äì 10:15am

For all ladies, beginner to intermediate

Open question and answer format with experienced athletes and coaches


Race Day Clinic – Jun 2, 9:00am – 10:15am

For all participants of the 2012 Grand Rapids Triathlon

What to expect on race day, course details, logistics, spectator info & more


New Dates Added for Swim Video & Stroke Analysis Clinic!

January 2nd, 2012 by Cheryl Sherwood

Join us for one of our 2-day sessions:

February 5th &12th
March 4th &11th.

Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Location: Kalamazoo College Pool

Click here for more info

New Year’s Run

December 31st, 2011 by Roxane Kippen, USA Triathlon Certified Coach

Who is ready to ring in the New Year by going for a run or walk with hundreds of your closest friends?! Whether you are a recreational runner/walker, mid-pack age grouper or elite athlete, New Year’s runs are always a great way to say farewell to last year and to say welcome to a new year of opportunities. Below are a few of the celebratory events in West Michigan. Grab your friends, neighbors, relatives and teammates and join the fun.

Wolverine Resolution Run (4 mile) – Dec 31, 3:30pm, East Grand Rapids

New Years Eve Run, Walk & Ramble (5K) – Dec 31, 6:00pm, Holland

John Daley Memorial One One Run (2.2 or 4.4 mile) – Jan 1, 1:00pm, Kalamazoo

Sergeant Preston, Yukon King 6 Mile / 5K Memorial Run – Jan 1, 11:00am, North Muskegon

Athletic “Mentee” Brent Tate Committed to Bowling Green for 2012 Season

December 12th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors

Athletic Mentors would like to congratulate Brent Tate on his commitment to play for Bowling Green University starting for the 2012 season. We started working with Brent last spring by developing a pre-hernia training program to keep him in the best shape possible before he underwent surgery. After a successful surgery, AM got Brent back into shape in time to do serious summer training by participating in our Elite Summer Hockey Camp. Throughout the summer Brent worked extremely hard and went into The USHL’s Lincoln Stars pre-season camp in excellent condition.

“Brent has impressed me from the first day I met him with his toughness, both physically and mentally. He showed up every day for our summer training camp prior to the start time and shot pucks and worked on his stick-handling. The kid is extremely committed to becoming to best hockey player he can be. BGU made a great decision to recruit Brent and I feel strongly that Brent will make an impact the day he shows up at BGU,” said Head AM Coach Mark Olson.

“We are really looking forward to working with Brent this coming summer to prepare him for his college hockey debut.”

Follow this link to read the Lincoln Stars Blog:


‘Get into the Swim’ at 2012 Swim Stroke Analysis Clinic

December 12th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors

Swimmers, are you ready to take your stroke to the next level? Sign up now for Athletic Mentor’s popular Swim Stroke Analysis Clinic slated for January 8 & 15th, 2012 with Coach Belco and Cricket! We’ll teach you the latest, most effective methods to develop your stroke, specific to your needs, your ability, and your body type. Our two-session clinic includes structured training, technique analysis and tips on form. You’ll learn pioneering techniques for breathing, curing cross-overs, improving body roll, shoulder injury, rhythm, timing and more to get maximum efficiency out of your stroke. Our limited enrollment clinics provide for a very personalized focus, which allows us to help you train “smarter.” The fusion of video analysis and years of coaching experience is a powerful tool that will improve your experience in both the pool and open water. Resolve to take your stroke to the next level with this highly effective clinic!

Join us January 8th and January 15th,

Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Location: Kalamazoo College Pool, 1200 Academy Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49006

Price: $250

Contact Us to reserve your spot!

Join Athletic Mentors and Team Priority Health Dec. 15 for Mel Trotter Ministries Fundraiser

December 12th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors
Mark your calendars for the annual holiday event to benefit Mel Trotter Ministries sponsored by Team Priority Health on Thursday December 15th from 7-11 PM at McFadden’s Restaurant at 58 Ionia SW.
This has become a large event where members of the fitness community enjoy an evening together while supporting a great cause. In addition to the Men’s underwear and socks that we have been collecting in the past there is a need for Women’s and Children’s underwear and socks this year so plan to bring underwear and socks and/or make a donation.
Tell your friends and family and join other members of the fitness community for a fun night that benefits a great cause. See how successful the event was last year at this link: 2010 Summary.

Where: McFadden’s Restuarant & Saloon, 58 Ionia SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Latitude: 42.964629

Longitude: -85.669214

When: Thursday December 15th 7 —> 11 PM

Facebook: Facebook Event Page



















Athletic Mentors is a Proud Sponsor of the Grand Rapids Triathlon 2012

December 12th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors

Athletic Mentors is pleased to announce its 2012 sponsorship of the Grand Rapids Triathlon. This triathlon event is a chance for athletes of all skill levels to compete on a scenic riverside course, perfect for the novice through the seasoned triathlete. This USA Triathlon sanctioned event promises heart pounding excitement from start to the finish. It will happen on June 10, 2012.

This group of triathletes are passionate about growing a healthy community. Kudos to this group for bringing a USAT Sanctioned Sprint, Olympic and Half to the Grand Rapids area! To support the effort, participate, or review training plans we’ll be posting on the Grand Rapids Tri website, please visit

Reserve now for Kelli Emmet’s Women’s Zion Camp this Spring!

November 2nd, 2011 by Athletic Mentors

Save the Date April 6-8 to join Athletic Mentor coach Kelli Emmet’s Zion Camp. Kick-start your season and hone your mountain bike skills as spring blooms in Southwest Utah. You’ll learn from arguably one of the finest all-around female riders in professional mountain biking today under the shadow of the soaring, colorful sandstone skyscrapers of the Zion National Park region.

We’ll also be joined by Elke Brutsaert, former pro downhiller for Giant Bicycles. Elke raced professionally for 8 years before retiring in 2001. Today Elke is a model of mountain bike instruction: she coaches for the Durango DEVO youth mountain bike program, the Fort Lewis College cycling team and also coaches privately.

This is an intermediate camp and women need to feel comfortable riding on singletrack and willing to challenge themselves on rocky surfaces. Rides will be anywhere from 2 to 3 hours long each day.

Program details:

  • 3 days, 2 nights in Southwest Utah
  • Singletrack and Slickrock between St George, UT and Zion National Park
  • This camp is appropriate for intermediate female riders looking to improve their overall mountain bike skills
  • Includes expert instruction, deluxe camping and gourmet meals
  • Trip starts and ends in St George, UT
  • Cost: $495 per person

For more details, or to REGISTER, visit

Team Priority Health Outing

October 28th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors
Team and Club members enjoyed a nice outing on Saturday October 22nd at the Athletic Mentors facility in Delton. A large group launched in the morning for a spirited ride on gravel roads over much of the Barry-Roubaix Gravel Road Race course. It was brisk at the start but it didn’t take long to encounter steep hills that caused some wardrobe adjustments. A special acknowledgement goes to Jeff Mira, from our Running Team, who completed the 39 mile hilly loop on his Mountain bike and then announced that his longest previous rice had been 26 miles. But Jeff was strong and moving well despite this 50% increase in mileage.
After the ride we were joined by spouses and treated to a cookout and prize distribution while we enjoyed the late October sunshine. Thanks to Cheryl Olson for arranging and hosting this gathering. A good time was had by all.

Fun Facts About Cycling…

October 27th, 2011 by Athletic Mentors

Types of races

Bicycle road races include multi-day stage races such as the famous Tour de France to Criteriums, which are races based on a circuit – usually less than a mile in length – and run for a set period of time. Criteriums, like the Priority Health Grand Cycling Classic, are the most popular form of road racing in North America. Typically the race runs through a closed-off city center.

Professional vs. amateur – what the rankings mean:

Cyclists are ranked through the U.S. Cycling Federation (USCF) based on race results calculated using the USCF Results and Rankings Program. “Category 1” refers to professional cyclists, and Categories 2 through 5 are amateur rankings. Masters cyclists are age 35 and above. For a complete explanation, see

Watching the race:

The Priority Health Grand Cycling Classic is a criterium: Cyclists circle a looped race for a set period of time. The cyclist who rides the longest distance during the specified time wins the race. Competition requires technical skills – especially the ability to take corners quickly and sharply, and riding safely with a large group in order to avoid crashing. In most Criteriums, cyclists reach speeds of up to 40 mph.

Cycling terminology:

Like most sports, cycling has its own lingo. Here’s a list of common terms to help you understand the race.

  • Attack. A sudden attempt to get away from another rider.
  • Blocking. When a rider tries to get in other riders’ way. This is a part of a team strategy to slow down other cyclists to allow other team members to get ahead in a breakaway.
  • Bridge the Gap. When a rider – or group of riders – tries to reach a group farther ahead.
  • Breakaway. When a group of riders get ahead of the pack (or peloton)
  • Cadence. Pedaling rate.
  • Chasers. Riders who are attempting to “bridge the gap” in attempting to catch the lead group.
  • Circuit. A track that is ridden more than one time during a race.
  • Criterium. A bike race in which cyclists ride on a circuit for a specified length of time or distance.
  • Drafting. Riding closely behind another rider in order to get into their slipstream. The lead rider expends up to 30 percent more energy than the following rider.
  • Drop. Getting left behind or losing contact with the group of riders.
  • Field. The main group of riders – also called the pack or peloton.
  • Force the Pace. When a rider goes harder than the rest of the pack to increase the pace.
  • Gap. The distance between groups or individuals.
  • Hammering. Steady, strenuous pedaling.
  • Hook. When riders use their wheels to hit rider(s) behind them – may be intentional or accidental.
  • Jump. A sudden acceleration, most often at the start of a sprint.
  • Kick. The final burst of speed in a race.
  • Mass Start. When all racers begin at the same time.
  • Pack. The main group of riders – also called the. field or peloton.
  • Peloton. The main group of racers – also called the field or the pack.
  • Prime (pronounced “preem”). This “race within a race” gives cyclists the chance to win a prize for being the first to complete a specific lap.
  • Slipstream. The air pocket created by a moving rider. Other riders “draft” in the slipstream to conserve energy.
  • Sprint. A burst of speed to finish the race – usually involving more than one rider.
  • Take a flyer. When a rider heads out in front of the pack, usually alone.