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30
June
2015

Athlete Service

Whilst visiting the Henley Highwayman event a couple of weeks ago, we met with Athlete Service who were offering triathlete support during the event. Impressed by their helpful approach, we went to visit them at their Henley-on-Thames premises and met up with co-founder Rob Griffiths.

 

 

Originally a rower, Rob began to race triathlon and Ironman events, competing in places such as Monaco, Nice, Switzerland, Lanzarote, South Africa and qualifying for Kona. He found himself tinkering with friends’ bikes, fixing them when broken and setting them up so the riders could become more efficient. He discovered he quite enjoyed this aspect of things.

Rob is partnered by Laurence Plant, a qualified chiropractor, and together they moved into new premises at the end of 2014 with a business plan to offer “everything for the triathlete”.

Walking into the premises you are welcomed by the KOM Café area, which serves great coffee. There is a seating area where you can sit and chat to Rob and Laurence or one of the many other triathletes who use the facilities. On the ground floor there is a bike workshop, cycle display area and racks of clothing and equipment.

 

But Athlete Service is more than just a shop. Walk through the front displays and you will find the endless pool™ fitted with video cameras; this is the domain of Clive Alderson, a qualified swim coach with over 20 years of experience working with swimmers from beginners to Elite level. He also helps swimmers with their technique using the VASA swim trainer located on the first floor. This swim trainer allows Clive to demonstrate the swimming action in greater detail. Clive will also take sessions in the pool or out in open water.

 

There are wet suits of different brands and sizes, which you can try in the pool. So if you were looking to purchase a wet suit, this is a good opportunity to find which wet suit best fits you.

On the first floor you will also find the running machine equipped with dorsaVi™ movement sensors which are used to help running gait analysis along with biomechanics analysis across a range of sports. This is a system that the Australian Institute of Sport uses, and its particular strength is that you can take it out on your run with you, so changes in your technique as you tire can also be addressed. Laurence’s main goal is to help injury prevention but the feedback can also be analysed by Tom Sturgess to help improve running speed.

Rob works with the CompuTrainer™ to make positional modifications to improve both comfort and efficiency. Rob will oversee any bike purchases you make to ensure you are getting the best frame suited to your needs and ensure the bike is set up to maximise your performance.

Athlete Service sponsor Tri Training Harder’s triathlon racing team with Felt IA bikes and running apparel. The Athlete Service team made sure all the bikes were set up for each individual and some of the team used the EndlessPool™, CompuTrainer™ and dorsaVi™ running sensors.

Whilst Athlete Service offer technical advice to improve efficiency and reduce the risk of injury, they have teamed up with both Surrey Sports Park and GB Age Group triathlete and Ironman gold medallist Sophie Whitworth to provide physiological testing and training plans.

As well as the running machine and VASA swim trainer, the first floor also has several weight training machines and an array of weight training equipment.  This is not a gym in the normal mould, as the whole atmosphere is of calm, focussed movement under the watchful eye of a personal trainer and, as always at Athlete Service, with the emphasis on rehabilitation or injury prevention.

Adjacent to this training area is a studio where Yoga and Pilates classes are run under the watchful eye of trained instructors.

Completing the team are Tony Robinson who is a qualified sports therapist and Charlotte Wright who is a qualified chiropractor, whilst Tom and Sam are the Strength and Conditioning Personal trainers who mainly work 1:1 with athletes.

Athlete Service seem to cover all the bases, from a welcoming coffee and cake, injury prevention and rehab, equipment and clothing through to performance enhancing technical and physiological improvements. If you are after an all-in-one package, this seems the place to investigate.

Visit Athlete Service | Twitter

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Categories: All topics, Athletics, Cycling, Swimming, Triathlon

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