Mountain biking and biking on pavement require different styles of riding. Save yourself the skinned knees you’re sure to get and continue reading. These 12 Tips for Transitioning between Pavement and Dirt at the time of mountain biking can save you from a wipe-out.
Don’t be discouraged if you still have a few accidents because mountain biking requires practice and even the pros crash at times.
12 TIPS FOR CHANGING FROM PAVEMENT TO DIRT AT THE TIME OF MOUNTAIN BIKING
1. STAND ON YOUR MOUNTAIN BIKE’S PEDALS TO HANDLE ROUGH TERRAIN
One of the most basic skills mountain bikers need to learn is to stand on the bikes pedals to maneuver. This keeps your body mobile and it’s easier to shift your weight to adjust to changes in the terrain and keep your balance.
2. DON’T OVER-BREAK
Many accidents on the trail are caused by either braking to often or to hard. When there are other bikers around this is even more dangerous because they may not have time to adjust to somebody suddenly stopping in front of them.
Braking harder than necessary is dangerous because it can cause you to wipe out. A good technique to stop over breaking is to use only one finger and don’t squeeze to hard. This also helps save strength in your forearms.
3. LOOK AHEAD TO WHERE YOUR GOING
This skill is important. Keep your eyes looking ahead and to where you’re going. Not anywhere else. Like driving a car, your have more time to adjust to changes on the trail.
This also helps your body stay focused on what it needs to do and your bike will naturally follow your lead. You’ll find that you’ll be able to tackle tougher obstacles without wiping-out.
4. SHIFT YOUR BODY’S WEIGHT FORWARD
When your climbing steep trails you have more traction if you lean your weight forward. You’ll also make sure you don’t lose balance and tip over backwards.
5. SHIFT YOUR BODY’S WEIGHT BACKWARD
To deal with steep descents you should shift your weight backwards. This helps maintain balance and control.
6. KEEP YOUR SPEED UP
Many obstacles on the trail are better met with speed so don’t slow down all the time. You’ll find-out your bike responds to changing terrain better when your going faster because you have momentum on your side.
7. KNOW THE TERRAIN IS ROUGH
You know the terrain is going to be rough and change quickly, so don’t overreact. You don’t always have to do much correcting when the tires slide a bit. Stay cool and confident in changing situations and you’ll find your performance is better.
8. PEDALS AT 3 AND 9 O’CLOCK WHEN GOING DOWNHILL
This is something many novice mountain bikers never guess. When your going downhill, you should have the bike’s pedals in the 3 and 9 o’clock positions. Doing this stops the inside pedal from scraping the ground when you corner. This really helps on blind or tight trails when you can’t see very far ahead of you and can stop an accident from happening.
9. GIVE IT YOUR ALL
Give it all your worth and you’ll perform well. If you don’t you’ll be in the dirt more than on the bike.
10. ANTICIPATE THE TRAIL
Like looking ahead of you, think about whats coming up and be prepared. Sounds like common sense but it’s something many bikers don’t do as much as they should.
Sometimes an obstacle is beyond you. It’s fine to walk anytime you need a break.
12. BE PREPARED WITH THE GEARS
Coasting means you should make sure you have the right gear selected so when you start to pedal you are close to your current speed.
Use these 12 Tips for Transitioning between Pavement and Dirt at the time of mountain biking and stay in control.