Two daredevil siblings, Zoe and Jayden Flemming, are BMX champions who regularly represent New Zealand in overseas competitions. In August 2014, they approached Glen Innes Pool and Leisure Centre managed by YMCA, looking for gym sponsorship to help them train. In their mission to build stronger kids, stronger families and stronger communities, Glen Innes Pool and Leisure Centre were excited to help Zoe and Jayden achieve their goals, and offered them a 12 month membership to the gym.

Since then, the fearless duo has been training hard, working alongside several personal trainers. As you might imagine, the Flemming siblings already have some training equipment at home, but they needed extra strength training to give them an edge in competitions, and weren’t sure how to get it without additional assistance.

Adrian Shepherd is one of the personal trainers who has been working alongside the siblings, and has helped to create a 12 week programme that has built up their strength. “They already have the cycling technique down, but need to understand how to use their body movements and muscle activations to improve their power output,” explains Adrian. “We’ve done a lot of explosive strength training, which involves lunges, squats, and some pretty heavy weights. The programme has been pretty much identical for both siblings except for the weights, and other small tweaks here and there.”

In the months that the Flemmings have been training at Glen Innes Pool and Leisure Centre, Adrian says that he has definitely noticed a difference in how they get on in the gym now, compared to when they joined. “They’re faster out of the gate now, and that will serve them well in the competitions.”

Surprisingly, Adrian hasn’t actually had a chance to watch the pair race (possibly because BMX competitions aren’t so common in New Zealand). However, att he time of writing this, they’re currently competing at the Australian National Series, where BMX racing is more popular, and Adrian hopes that they bring back a medal or two. In fact, this is the peak BMX racing season, and Jayden is proud to have been selected as captain of the New Zealand team abroad. Says Adrian “I’ve seen their confidence build as they’ve gotten stronger, and I’m sure they’ll do well and get a good result.”

There won’t be much downtime after the Australian National Series, as Zoe and Jayden will be heading to Belgium for the World Championships! That’s why the 12 week programme has been so important in terms of getting good, quick results for the Flemmings - a lot is now riding on them.

Zoe is enthusiastic about the support that she and her brother have received from YMCA. “The support and encouragement we have already received is something we could have never expected. The trainers have taken us onboard and done everything possible to ensure we can achieve to the best of our ability. The one-on-one sessions with their brilliant personal trainers means we already know their support is going to get us to where we want to be. We’re both beyond thankful!”

No matter how the Flemmings do in their competitions, YMCA is proud to have been able to help these community heroes. Their training will continue in the upcoming months, and it’s hoped that all of their hard work pays off.