Whenever you’re learning a new skill, such as swimming, dancing, or playing drums, there’s a beginner level that you need to know before moving on to more advanced and highly technical skills. It’s quite similar to mountain biking.
You need to learn basic mountain biking skills since this will be the foundation as you trek towards unknown and unchartered biking territories.
You might ask if professional mountain bikers are born, well, I don’t think so. Start with baby steps before conquering Mt. Everest.
Here are some basic mountain biking skills you need to start.
The first thing you should check is to make sure the seat has a correct position in proportion to your height. The seat height should be in level with your hip bones.
Mount Your Bike
First-time bikers have certain awkwardness climbing their bike. To get over the stiffness – hold the bike at a lower angle before stepping through the frame.
Step On The Pedal
A basic skill in mountain biking is to practice how to pedal. Start by depressing the brake levers, with a pedal positioned at the top. Stand up then lean forward as you release the brakes, then slowly start pedaling before sitting back on the saddle.
As you pedal, your arms should be bent, with your leg around eighty percent extended on your every stroke. Sit relaxed, with your body lose and practice pedaling around, without having your knees and elbows getting locked.
Get used to shifting the gears on your mountain bike as you ride along different roads and terrains. Low gears let you pedal much easier, which you should use to climb. You should shift the gear before you hit the climb, rather than in the middle of steep ascend. High gears let you pedal harder, though it let you run faster which you can use on smooth and flat surfaces.
Body Position Standing
For your primary standing position, stand up and practice standing on the pedals, while it’s in a straight horizontal position. Also, try switching your body at the rear of the frame (while standing). Practice on this position, as you learn to clear some rough patch or rugged trail. When you stand, bend your knees slightly, with the saddle between your legs.
Pedal While Standing
Practice pedaling while standing on your bike. Get off the saddle, and then on your primary standing position, start pedaling, changing gears, from low gears on a climb, and high gears on flat surfaces.
Jumping On A Curb
An essential skill you must develop is to practice standing while cruising at different speeds off a curb, taking in the shock of the jump on your legs and arms, until you feel comfortable.
Another skill to build is to practice pushing down on handlebars to put a spring at the front tires, then you push your body from your arms, in return pulling the handlebars with your hands, lifting the front wheel as it approaches the curb.
Try to lighten the weight on the pedal, letting the rear come up the curb, absorbing the hit on your legs. Get comfortable while doing this.
There are more skill-building techniques that we will share, for now, practice the basics of mounting, pedaling, gear shifting, standing, pedaling, and curb jumping.