Durham University Cycling Club is an umbrella organisation for all disciplines of cyclists at Durham University. Whether you’re just looking for a casual ride around the countryside on a Wednesday afternoon, or a structured training program and access to the University’s physiology labs, there’s something for you in the club.
Coaching & Athlete Support
The club is classed as a ‘Tier 1b’ club within the Team Durham club structure, and this gives our riders access to a variety of benefits. Our British Cycling qualified coach runs club training sessions mainly focused on improving the BUCS TTT teams and our road race tactics. Development riders are coached in house by experienced club members, who give up their time in return for the opportunity to get British Cycling coaching awards.
Away from cycle specific coaching, Team Durham provide strength and conditioning support. This is provided through a weekly session, led by a qualified coaches. The coaches work closely with the cycle specific coaches, as well as benefiting from a cycling background themselves. This means that instead of just doing ‘beach weights’ we follow an effectively periodized plan that fits with each rider’s targets and deficiencies. The sessions involve mixes of lifting and bodyweight exercises that target strength, power, core stability and flexibility.
Team Durham also provide physiotherapy support free of charge to our performance athletes. This results in far fewer athletes carrying ‘niggling’ injuries just because they can’t reach a physio through the NHS, and can’t afford private treatment.
As we are part of a University, we also like to try and have something of an education slant on the athlete support. With this in mind, our coach runs a series of seminars on a variety of cycling performance related topics such as nutrition, recovery, pacing, warming up, periodization, training with power etc. This will be with the aim of producing athletes who are not only competing at a high level, but are also able to take ownership of their training and lifestyle better once they’ve left Durham.
You’ve just bought a bike, it isn’t a pro-level carbon machine, you’re slightly worried about donning overly tight clothing and just fancy meeting up with like minded people and going for a ride? Don’t worry, you’re not alone, there are plenty of people in the club like you! The club is unique within Team Durham clubs in that as well as having a very successful performance team, we also are here to cater for anyone that enjoys the sport.
So if you just want to ride socially, get in touch and join the club. You can benefit from free British Cycling Bronze membership that gives you third party cover, and you’re more than welcome to buy the team kit (or just the jersey if the shorts scare you!). There will be organised social rides (MTB and road), and we encourage all our members to post on the forum whenever they’re heading out for a ride. Its always good to have company when you’re riding!
Women’s cycling is going from strength to strength in the UK and the girls at DUCC have had a successful few years!
If you want to be competitive on the bike, you can get involved with some serious training, daily rides, strength and conditioning sessions and turbo training. Equally, if you want to be a more casual member, that’s great, you are welcome to join us on any of our rides, road cycling or mountain biking. Don’t worry about the pace; there will always be someone to help you out!
Unfortunately, cycling can seem like quite a male dominated sport, so we are always keen to encourage girls to get involved. Whether you are a total amateur or practically a pro, get in contact with our President (Kat Broadbent)!
Club road rides take place every Wednesday (2pm), Saturday (10am) and Sunday (9am) starting at the New Inn. Its best to get in touch with the Captain before coming along to one, as sometimes the time will differ slightly. Anyone is welcome to come along to these rides, there is usually a spread of abilities and we sort out groups based on ability on the day.
County Durham is an excellent area for road riding. Heading out West from Durham you quickly enter the Pennines where you won’t be short of gratifyingly long climbs and 50+mph descents. For rest days where you’re trying to avoid 15% hills (completely avoiding hills isn’t going to happen…), heading out to the East brings you quickly to the coast. We are also lucky to have access to Hetton Country Park, a technical closed circuit perfect for developing race skills away from the traffic.
The weekly training structure is roughly:
Monday – Turbo session 8-9pm (Maiden Castle Aerobics Room)
Tuesday – Small morning group ride
– Strength and conditioning session 7:00-8:00pm (Maiden Castle weights room)
Wednesday – Club ride 2pm
Thursday – Small morning group ride
Friday – Small morning group ride
Saturday – Club ride 10am
Sunday – Club ride 9am
Durham is a BC and CTT affiliated club with a strong racing scene so there is plenty of opportunity to race, whether you are an established higher category racer, or just looking to start out. The BUCS (British Universities & Colleges Sport) competition is our main focus as a University Team, and traditionally has consisted of a Hill Climb, Cyclo-cross, 10mile and 25mile ITTs, a 3-Up TTT, a Road Race, a Track event and a crit. The BUCS programme is the primary focus of the club with race and travel costs covered by Team Durham!
Outside BUCS there are lots of other opportunities to race. There are a number of road races and circuit races through the Lent term, and in the summer there are BC and TLI races just about every week. This includes a series of BC Crits for our developing 4th and 3rd Category racers; 50% of these will be run at the circuit at Hetton Country Park which is only a 7 miles ride away from Durham.
The TT scene around Durham is also very strong. There are a number of midweek club series within reach of Durham, and lots of Open TTs at weekends. If you’re feeling particularly hardcore the Tyne and Tees SPOCO events are definitely worth a look, although sadly the particularly epic T405 course tends to be used on the same weekend as a BUCS event.
Welcome to Mountain Biking at Durham University. We try to offer something for everyone and during the year trips will be run ranging from actual mountain ascents (and descents!) to the University Championships as well as trail centre visits and smaller races. The local trails around Durham are our staple, but with inter-club races and freeride training there’s plenty of variety. This year there will also be a little more focus in training for those who wish to compete, with the aim of sweeping up silverware at the BUCS event. But its not all about high speeds and adrenaline, if you’d rather tour the beautiful Durham countryside with good company we do that too!
Where we meet
We meet outside the New Inn, opposite the main Library.