1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    4th ride: Totally ate it over the weekend

    Hey everyone, new member here. Just bought a bike a month ago and have been on a few trail rides. Over the weekend, I was going down a nice, wide fire road, and was deceived on how fast I was going (compared to a tight, steep cliff trail). I had to make a sweeping right turn, and braked too late, and leaned too much to the right and the bike slid out from under me, resulting in some nasty scrapes.

    I feel like I'm getting more comfortable on the bike but not necessarily getting more competent. I suppose this is how one learns. Might be time for some padding...

  2. #2
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    There's also a moto method for cornering.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the post. I actually did see this video, but need to practice it. It's unnatural for me to stay upright and lean the bike...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dusadus View Post
    Thanks for the post. I actually did see this video, but need to practice it. It's unnatural for me to stay upright and lean the bike...
    Lowering your seat while you practice will help. If you to back and watch the video closely, you see that his seat is far lower than you're likely to have it set for trail riding. What you'll see him do time and time again is weight the seat the back of his thigh, or even in the crook of his knee, of the inside leg. You want to drop the seat fora enough to have enough room to do this comforatably; you'll find having that added interface gives you a better feel for what the bike is doing, and also helps you drive it into the turn. I'm surprised he didn't mention it actually - once you're looking for it, you'll see how much it plays into things.

    Once you've got the feel for it, you'll find you can use the same technique with your saddle up higher, but of course the higher you have it, the more it limits your ability to move around on the bike. Everything's a trade - off.

    Decent tires and the right pressure also make a huge difference - some tires in some conditions are downright treacherous. Too high of a pressure makes it even worse. And sometimes, there's just not enough traction for a bunch of speed no matter what. Only cure for that is to slow down a little.

    I've used various levels of armor many times, particularly when I used to push my limits more, and it's paid off a million times. Not a bad investment for someone starting out IMO.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    If you to back and watch the video closely, you see that his seat is far lower than you're likely to have it set for trail riding. What you'll see him do time and time again is weight the seat the back of his thigh, or even in the crook of his knee, of the inside leg. You want to drop the seat fora enough to have enough room to do this comforatably; you'll find having that added interface gives you a better feel for what the bike is doing, and also helps you drive it into the turn.
    I think I understand, so basically are you saying to use the saddle / frame as a "threshold monitor." Based on the contact pressure on the knee / thigh will tell you how far your leaning and how much further you can go?

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    Quote Originally Posted by shawneeboy View Post
    I think I understand, so basically are you saying to use the saddle / frame as a "threshold monitor." Based on the contact pressure on the knee / thigh will tell you how far your leaning and how much further you can go?
    Yes - you get that feedback and also the additional contact point with bike adds control over weight distribution, balance, traction, etc. Try it and it should start making sense pretty much right away. You can do it right in your driveway.
    Sinister Bikes
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  7. #7
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    You can practice all you want on a grassy hill with hardly any consequences. And have fun.

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