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.
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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.
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
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    Keep forgetting to look far enough ahead when riding

    I've been riding for two seasons now and would probably classify myself as an intermediate rider. I rarely have to walk anything but I definitely don't get down everything in style.

    I've realized one of the main things holding me back is my inability to look far enough ahead and I can't seem to shake this bad habit. When I think about it and force myself to look far ahead, riding becomes so much easier but I can only do it for a short while before I forget and start staring at the ground much closer to me than I should be.

    I have the same problem in other sports as well, such as skiing.

    Does anyone have any tips for getting better at looking far enough ahead? Any kind of drills to do etc?

  2. #2
    My little friends
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    Riding with other people who are ahead of you helps; you will get into the practice of watching them, rather than the trail in front of you. It all comes down to confidence; and that will build with experience.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by EABiker View Post
    Riding with other people who are ahead of you helps; you will get into the practice of watching them, rather than the trail in front of you. It all comes down to confidence; and that will build with experience.
    YES YES and YES....for months I always trailed in the back of the line when riding with friends group of 3-5. Not wanting to slow them down and what not since they are more experienced riders. Well 3 weeks ago they informed me that Im improving leaps and bounds but in order to improve I need to ride in the middle of the pack. My riding has gotten a HUGE boost in a matter of a few weeks due to this.

    It forces you to look ahead and be aware...It forces you to push harder whether it be on a climb, technical part, or a long flat where you have to speed through..

  4. #4
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    Practice riding curbs, if you look at the front to close you will fall off the curb you need to look ahead to stay on track.
    Giant XTC 2 29er
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  5. #5
    local trails rider
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    Hmmmm....
    Keep reminding yourself that you NEED to see what is up next.
    From dog training When you do the wrong thing, STOP. Then get your head in gear again before you continue.

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  6. #6
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    Other than the suggestions above (which are far better):

    Drive on the highway, over the speed limit enough so you're not driving with reckless abandon, but fast enough for a ticket. Keep your eyes on the horizon, watching for cars parked on the divide or shoulder.

    You could also mount a sharp knife, blade point towards you, close enough to your head so if you look down you cut yourself.. but this particular solution might suck a wee bit if you go OTB.

    I've seen an indoor cycling trainer / game setup that used the bike trainer as a controller, and the TV as the screen, this might help for habit forming?

  7. #7
    Picture Unrelated
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    It's about conditioning as pert said, you're in control of the situation so when you realize that you aren't doing what you need to be doing, correct yourself. It's a long process, one which I struggle with every ride. As you correct yourself, you will find you need to do it less and less; ideally, you'll get to a point where you no longer need to correct yourself. This is all about conditioning and it's a process that will take time no matter what you try.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    It's about conditioning as pert said, you're in control of the situation so when you realize that you aren't doing what you need to be doing, correct yourself. It's a long process, one which I struggle with every ride. As you correct yourself, you will find you need to do it less and less; ideally, you'll get to a point where you no longer need to correct yourself. This is all about conditioning and it's a process that will take time no matter what you try.
    I agree.

    One way to "force" you to condition yourself is like EAbiker said ,and I spoke from experience , is to ride with others in front of you and if possible people behind you as well.

  9. #9
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    Ride mid pack, that will help get rid of that problem and will allow you to hone your skills by watching the guy up front.

  10. #10
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    I've also been looking at gyro's for motion controllers.. but, it doesn't look like there is a shock collar that gives a jolt when it reaches a certain threshold :\

    Perhaps someone should invent something like this?

  11. #11
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    I use visual techniques from motorcycle racing. A major one is wide view. Most people will tend to focus on only what they're looking at directly. You need to open up your field of view by using peripheral vision. You wont need to look far down the trail, instead use peripheral vision to vaguely see where the trial goes while the center of your vision is left to pick up more detail for line choice.

    Obviously you can't put all of your attention on two things at once so it is a compromise and it takes some practice. Once you get it right the fast down hills feel a whole lot slower and easier than they used to. Just practice it whenever you're on an easy part of trail that leaves you with nothing else to do but practice technique. Slowly work it into all of your riding.

    Edit: I never get the chance to ride in a group. So I never thought about it but thats exactly what you need to do. Part of your attention goes to the person in front of you keeping you looking ahead while the other part goes to the trail itself. So stick with everyone else's advice .

  12. #12
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    Often when I ride, I have a key phrase in my head to focus on.

    When I'm working on looking far enough ahead it might be "look up" or "look far." I just repeat that to myself whenever I catch myself not doing it.

    On other rides I might focus on "look wide," "I am smooth," "strong core," or "long neck" (The last helps me keep my shoulders from creeping up). Of course I want to do everything right every ride, but focusing on one phrase each ride really helps, and it does carry over to rides in which it isn't my focus.

    Oh yeah, it may sound dumb, but no one can hear what's going on in my head.

  13. #13
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    You can try putting a little of tape on the glasses, right below the center of the lens, it may help. I would not put the clear sticky tape but the magic tape. You can do that riding on the paved road, it would force you to raise your gaze. The tape position can vary depending on what you want to work on, you may put it up so it force you to look up try what works for you.

    I have a habit of rubbing the back of my helmet to the top of my back pack while riding to ensure the I keep my chin and my head up not down.

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