Robert Ericsson at Stena Group IT does a lot of downhill skiing in the winter, but one spring as the season was drawing to an end, he felt he needed something else. He chose mountain biking (MTB).

Why MTB?

It’s a sport that has it all. Getting out into nature, pulse, technology and adrenaline, and you can choose what you want to focus on. When I was growing up as a teenager in Dalarna we always used to bike in gravel pits, and I’ve always missed it. So it felt natural to get into MTB.

What kind of MTB do you do?

MTB is very broad. From cross country and the Cykelvasan races to pure downhill riding. I seem to have ended up somewhere in between, I’d say. 

Do you practice any other sports?

In addition to skiing, there’s also lots of hockey. Although I played hockey three times a week last season, it was almost like running into a wall the first time I joined a bike group here in Gothenburg. Two hours with maximum heart rate! It took a few days before I was human again, you could say. But you get into it surprisingly fast. When biking in varying terrain, it becomes like an intensive course in interval training. And as we know it, this is what produces the quickest effect on fitness.

How often do you bike?

I am a hobby cyclist but I try to get out 2 to 3 times a week when it isn’t the season for any other sport.

What should you consider if you want to start?

I’d recommend renting a bike the first few times. You then have the opportunity to test a few different bikes and see which form of biking you think is the most fun. That’s how my wife and I started. We booked an MTB weekend at Högbo Brukshotell at the beginning of the year. And it was absolutely fantastic. Since a bike can cost quite a bit, it’s a good idea to rent or borrow one before buying. If you want to ride with family and friends, it’s most fun if you have reasonably similar bikes. And if you want to get out into nature on larger gravel roads and better paths, it’s enough with a bike with front-wheel shock absorbers. But for more muddy terrain, you should invest in a bike with shocks both front and back, which both me and my wife have. Hers is more for cross country riding and mine more for downhill. In other words, she’s faster than me going uphill but I fly past her going down.

Favourite place to ride?

There are lots of good places in Gothenburg. Änggården, Delsjön, Lackarebäck, Sisjön, Hisingsparken and Vättlefjäll are just a few examples. If you like downhill biking, Vallåsen at Hallandsåsens is really good.

Do you compete?

I’ll be in the Cykelvasan race for the first time next year. And I’m thinking about joining the ESS (Enduro Sweden Series) as well. But we’ll see how much time is left over for that. My wife and I are expecting our second child and I suspect there won’t be much time left over for my sports.

NAMERobert Ericsson
TITLEStena Self-Service, Stena Group IT
FAMILYWife and one child

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