Ask the Expert: Should You Ride at the Intensity of Your Students?

This is a video shot in 2012 while on location in Kauai filming for a Global Ride virtual ride. At the time, Tom Scotto was working with Cycling Fusion (shortly after that he came to work for ICA for a few years). Tom Scotto is one of the true masters of this industry, and while I had him at my beck and call, I took advantage of the situation and filmed three Ask the Expert videos.

The topics we cover in this video series are all very important to all instructors. In this first one, we discuss when it is appropriate for an instructor to ride at the intensity that is being asked of the class and when it’s better to back off. Video #2 will provide tips on how to “fake it” while teaching (you will find that one rather humorous!). In video #3 we get a little more serious and discuss ways to increase your confidence when working in an environment where you are the only instructor (or one of few) who adheres to correct cycling principles of “keeping it real.” This final video will hit home with many instructors these days.

Should You Ride at the Intensity of the Class?

Some programs suggest that you should never, or rarely, ride at the intensity of the class so you can devote all your time to coaching. While there is truth to this, especially for very high-intensity classes or for new riders, there is a time and a place for working as hard as you are asking of your riders. It’s important for you to know when that time and place is! In this video, Tom and I provide our advice and experiences. I think you’ll find some real gems in this video that will help you become the true coach that you are! 


  1. It was so good to view this video again!

  2. Ditto to the above comments…THANK YOU!

  3. Great video; loved hearing your thoughts and agree with them! =)

  4. Thanks guys! As always your guidance is helpful and strategic.

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