Three of the best mountain biking tips ever, to help you become your best on the trails:
1. Look where you want to go, not at what you want to miss.
Where you look has a huge influence over where your wheels will roll. This tip is the best mountain biking tip ever.
It’s the Golden rule of mountain biking: “Your wheels will follow your eyes”. Stare long enough at that rock you want to miss, and you’ll ride straight into it. Instead, focus on the imaginary line or path along the trail where you want your wheels to go.
From exiting a corner on the perfect line between two rocks, to riding a plank over a creek, how good you are at focusing on where you want your wheels to go is what ultimately determines your success.
There’s a deeper meaning to this Golden rule, too: “Your energy follows your eyes”.
Or in other terms: “look where you want your energy to go”.
Looking ahead along the trail helps direct your physical and mental energy forward. Even on the smoothest trails, looking too close to your wheel for too long can actually slow your progress.
Test the difference it makes in even the simplest situation: Find a climb and race up it twice. Once looking mostly down right in front of your wheel, and once looking ahead as much as possible.
Get better with this: How to Scan the Trail Ahead
2. Momentum is king.
The more momentum you can keep, while still keeping control, the easier everything becomes.
The right amount of momentum gets you through the rock garden and over the log roll-over without stalling or losing balance. It also gets you through the sand more easily, and it fires you out of the corner sooner and faster than your mates.
The more momentum you have on approach to the climb, the less you need to worry about traction. And the further you’ll get up the climb before needing to pedal. You might even be able to climb in a harder gear. You’ll arrive at the top sooner and have a little more speed and momentum to carry into the next section of trail.
3. Focus on exiting corners fast, rather than entering fast.
Set your speed before the corner, so you won’t have to brake or skid around the turn.
Focus on a wide and smooth entry, looking ahead towards the exit by mid-turn. Put power back on the pedals as soon as you can, as you look out through the corner exit and along the trail to whatever is coming next.
If your habit is to brake heavy around corners, try entering all corners a little slower and keeping off the brakes around the turn. Rather than thinking of ‘hitting the corner hard’, shift your thoughts to mid corner flow and accelerating exit speed. At first it might feel slower, but as your technique develops you will become much faster than before.
Get better with this: How to Corner Like You’re on Rails
Share this page with your friends! And keep an eye out next week for 3 more of the best mountain biking tips ever.