Anyone wanting to meet Steffi Marth needs to be quick! Whether on a mountain bike, by car or plane: if Steffi isn't already on a trail somewhere in Europe, Asia, America or elsewhere, then Germany's most dynamic mountain biker is probably making her way there. Despite this, she doesn't consider herself particularly talented at mountain biking.
There aren't many people who know the precise moment that their life completely changed forever. For Steffi Marth, however, she can state this with great certainty:
it was the summer when the mayor of her small village decided to build a new BMX course for the kids in the 3000-strong community.
From that moment on, the 12-year-old at the time swapped the handball court for the brand-new BMX track. Steffi instantly noticed how much fun it was to race her bike around the course and continuously improve her skills. She was fast and soon found herself running rings around the boys on the BMX course. Steffi learned to assert herself and that BMX involved using the entire body to prevail against the 7 other riders in a race.
„Elbows out and devil may care!"
Steffi developed her own riding style early on and it's continued to evolve over time. German Championships, European Championships, World Championships: Steffi has participated in all the national and international BMX competitions and wasn't only always right at the top but even took home a few winning trophies.
However, while travelling to her many races, Steffi noticed her second major passion: discovering faraway places. She sought new challenges and new ways of testing herself. Steffi found herself frequently swapping her BMX for a mountain bike and the BMX tracks in the cities for tough mountain bike trails in the mountains.
"When I get on my bike and head down a trail, I'm focussing purely on the moment rather than anything else going on in my life."
What's more, to ensure that she didn't get bored in between all the travelling and racing, she also enrolled in an architectural degree and obtained her master's.
Steffi enjoys talking about the sport she loves and her passion for travelling, being outdoors and discovering distant lands. The mountain biker has managed to combine both well, taking her to all five continents and the world's most remote locations. One of her main highlights was mountain biking along the Great Wall of China and through the incredible expanse of Tibet. Steffi has managed to combine and live out her two main passions.
Four-cross (4X) is her latest discipline and will make her Germany's fastest mountain biker. It's a race in which 4 riders all tackle a steep, technically demanding course with bumps, jumps and steep turns at the same time. The race is mostly a knockout tournament; men against men, women against women; She is the 5-time German champion, regularly placed in the top 10 at the World Championships and won two bronze medals at the Women's Four-Cross World Championships in Leogang, Austria. It's therefore quite surprising when she says she doesn't consider herself particularly talented at mountain biking.
"Anyone who wants to be a good mountain biker has to give everything, be passionate about it and work hard. Not just on the bike, but also after the rides. Talent alone doesn't get you very far."
Steffi gives everything in her training sessions but also focusses heavily on her body and "skin", which she says "always needs to slow down afterwards". She relaxes her muscles by rolling them with the BLACKROLL®. Eating and sleeping well are also important to her for proper recovery. For mountain bikers, she recommends rolling the MINI over the wrists.
Anyone asking for techniques on passive recovery will get a clear recommendation from her. "I'm a massive fan of the RECOVERY PILLOW and also use the RECOVERY BLANKET. I take both of them with me everywhere. Anyone who travels as much as I do and needs to be fit for the following day should definitely give it a try."
And what are her next goals? "I'd like to spend winter biking in the Canary Islands again. La Palma is my island and ridiculously good for biking. Then I'd like to discover Russia by bike. I've been intrigued by this huge country for ages.
But you don't always have to look so far away.
„Cool trails are always right on the doorstep. You just have to find them!"