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  1. #1
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    Old People Crashes

    After 20+ years away from mountain bikes I've recently rediscovered what fun I've been missing. Problem is, during the past month that I've been back at it I've crashed twice - with the last one leaving me with a couple of very painful cracked ribs. This wasn't part of the plan!

    It seems my balance and skills are not what they used to be, and probably will never be again. At 62 years old, that reality has given me a wack upside the head. Where I used to bounce and roll I now just stick - hard!

    How do you old people (like me) do it? Have you had to slow down your riding to sedentary speeds on beginner trails? Or do you still give it hard and take some chances? I'm sure with practice I'll get a little better. At least at judging what I am capable of and what should be walked around. But in the meantime this learning curve hurts! At my age broken bones are really not an option I want to put up with.

    Or maybe it's finally time to give that golf thing a whirl.

  2. #2
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    I have been lifting weights and doing balance work in the gym to keep strong for MTB.

    I would highly recommend some good instruction as well. When I skied I would take a class at the start of every season even when I was skiing double blacks. It was always good to have someone else take a look at what you are doing.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by leaguerider View Post
    I have been lifting weights and doing balance work in the gym to keep strong for MTB.

    I would highly recommend some good instruction as well. When I skied I would take a class at the start of every season even when I was skiing double blacks. It was always good to have someone else take a look at what you are doing.
    This is what I was going to suggest. A little strength training even if its simple at home exercises with body weight (push ups, sit ups, pull ups, squats, lunges, etc.) to help prevent injury and a good skills clinic session to sharpen your out of use skills.

  4. #4
    Anytime. Anywhere.
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    58, and I don't think I have ever ridden better than now. 30 years without any long breaks and I have been hanging with some incredible riders lately. I've got what I call a safety bike, some pads, and try to focus on being smooth.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  5. #5
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    How did you crash? What kind of bike are you riding?

    53 and I still take some chances but try to stay reasonable, sometimes I have to remind myself that a really bad crash will put me off of riding. I'm on blood thinners so I'm not supposed to participate in contact sports. But I've been riding for awhile.
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  6. #6
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    Consequences of crashing get greater with age, we all know that. Ironically a friend of mine who is early 30s and a really good rider, has just discovered that for himself - something I have been warning him about for a while.

    He got a BMX for his birthday and has been going down to the local pump track. I told him you'll never be 15 again, and he's currently in hospital for observation after doing a header into the concrete. Going to visit him tomorrow to provide some gentle mocking...
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
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  7. #7
    meatier showers
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    I'm 63, been riding bikes passionately for 45 years. I made it to 60 without ever breaking a collarbone. Then suddenly on a night ride -- Bam! -- it happened. I thought it was an anomaly so once I healed, I started riding like I used to (rowdy). Eleven months later -- Bam! -- I broke the same bone again.

    Okay, I'm listening now.

    Downtime sucks. And coming back after being off the bike for months at this age is hard work (understatement). My current philosophy: don't ever stop riding.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    How did you crash? What kind of bike are you riding?
    My current bike is a Haro Fliteline Sport 29. Pretty cheap bike, and if I'm going to stick with this stuff I'll be upgrading this spring. I've been reading a lot on the plus bikes and it seems like they might be a little more forgiving of mistakes.

    First wreak was on a bumpy downhill curve, missed my line by a bit and the front wheel caught a big root at a bad angle and tossed me. Happened so fast I'm not even sure, but might have had my butt on the seat a bit being lazy, even though I know better.

    Second one was this week - I tried to ride across one of the narrow wooden bridge things. Normally I had been going around those or walking it, but on this one there wasn't another path and I thought "oh heck, I can do this one". Bad idea - it sucked me right off the edge.

    Both wreaks should have been easily avoidable, and I'll learn from that. But learning by cracking ribs hurts, and I wonder how many other lessons I need before I figure out how to not hurt myself even worse.

  9. #9
    wjh
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    54 years old. Last year front end washed out and had the first broken bones of my life. 2 ribs. 2 weeks ago hit a patch of ice resulting in broken collar bone. Both were complete shocks in that i wasn't riding fast and they happened so suddenly. I have exercised and lifted weights for years but didn't seem to help me. I will be paying more attention going forward

  10. #10
    meatier showers
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    Quote Originally Posted by wjh View Post
    ... 2 ribs. ...
    Don't broken ribs HURT?! I snapped three about 20 years ago. Prior to that I assumed if I ever had to choose which bone(s) I'd break, I'd pick ribs. Nope. Try sleeping. Or breathing. Or sneezing. Or walking. Or ANYTHING -- everything's painful. Ugh. We have so many... figured I'd never even notice a broken rib. I'm dumb.
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  11. #11
    fog
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    I will be 69 next week. The last crash I had was 3 or 4 years ago, and it was one of the top 5 bad crashes I have ever had, and I spent a lot of years competitively roacing off road hare scrambles and enduros and I had a few there too.

    Also I found that after 63 or so my body was a lot more fragile than it was in my mid 50's.

    I now ride to NOT fall. Yes I am slower but I can ride the next day or two. If it looks chancy I walk it. Nothing is worth another bad fall than will put me off the bike or totally off the bike. The more I ride during the summer my skills come back and I can do more/faster than I do early in the season.

    My goal is to keep riding for many more years, which is why I take this approach.

    Good luck, and be careful out there!
    Wayne

  12. #12
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    Big crashes hurt big, it was that way when I was young, and it's that way now that I'm older. I went over the bars at speed last Fall, seperated a rib up high, tweaked my shoulder, smashed the shite outta my knee.

    The rib and shoulder are fine, but the knee bothers me when I crawl around under the house and when I play volleyball; so last weekend I skipped volleyball and installed a soaking tub for my wife

    It takes more time to recover, it also seems to be accumulating, but in all honesty I hurt all the time except when I'm riding or asleep

    Prophylactic Tylenol and stay hydrated.

    Broken bones, etc to date:

    TMJ, Tooth x 1
    Neck/Back x 1
    Ankle x 1
    Foot x 3
    MCL x 1
    Wrist x 1
    Thumb x 1
    Ribs x 3
    AC joint x 2
    Fingers all but L pinky and R thumb, multiples on most
    Stitches >100
    But never had a concussion!

    I'm ADHD, it goes with the territory

  13. #13
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    "When in doubt....be a man and dismount - be well enough to ride the next day."
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by fog View Post
    ...I now ride to NOT fall....
    Wayne
    I've been riding like that since my late 30s when I realised that my contemporaries were disappearing through injury attrition.

    It's just not worth sacrificing your remaining bike years for an instantaneous thrill.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cayenne_Pepa View Post
    "When in doubt....be a man and dismount - be well enough to ride the next day."
    I don't know if that's ever saved me a crash, but I'm sure it's never cost me one.
    The most expensive bike in the world is still cheaper than the cheapest open heart surgery.

  16. #16
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    I was 60 when I first broke a collarbone. However, the two other guys who broke collar bones and the one hauled off in the ambulance after the pileup in the crit were all in their 30s.

    That said, I'm 4 years older now and there's been a notable decline in abilities. Heck, sometimes getting off the couch feels like I'm getting up from a crash.
    Do the math.

  17. #17
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    No need to ride slower!!!

    Keep hammering away unless your body dictates otherwise, in which case a good workout plan is in order.
    Stick around if you're housebroken...

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cayenne_Pepa View Post
    "When in doubt....be a man and dismount - be well enough to ride the next day."
    Well, having broken my fair share of bones crashing a MTB, I agree with this. Not because I'm older (53) but because crashing can hurt...and hurt for quite a while too.

    I was 35 when I broke my collar bone into four pieces. Not fun..flying over the bars at 25+ mph.

    Of course, riding slower and deciding when to dismount are both relative types of things. I still ride faster than most of my friends. Even some that are quite a bit younger.

    Rider skill can be improved with experience.
    Never be afraid to try something new.

    Remember amateurs built the Ark.
    Professionals built the Titanic.

  19. #19
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    I can trace all of my crashes the past two years to not having enough upper body strength to deal with the extra 20 pounds I am carrying over when I was younger.

    I'm losing weight and working on my upper body and also my hand strength. If nothing else, I'll have less mass behind the landing.

  20. #20
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    I had a rash of going over the bars a few months ago. 4 times in 6 rides. Last week I went OTB gain on a semi fast downhill trail. As I was going down the trail one of MY dogs ran in front of me. I T-boned her, she yelped and kept going. I hit the dirt. Somehow I've managed to roll and land on my side every time. Maybe it's from racing MX years ago? No broken bones but really sore for a week of so.
    Last edited by rorhound; 03-06-2017 at 05:01 PM.

  21. #21
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    Crashes have consequences on the body and the mind. Crashing takes away your stoke. Its also important to build yourself back up slowly. Mentally you need some time to rebuild confidence. So back down on the difficulty of what you used to be doing and work your way back up.

    I had a terrible crash a year and half ago which resulted in some very serious injuries. I got back on the bike as soon as I was cleared medically. I started back slowly and gradually rode more challenging terrain. It's good to push yourself, but don't do anything you know is beyond your ability. Your confidence will come back and your skill will improve a lot.

    As others mention: strength training (I believe I healed faster, thanks to lifting weights, building core strength and maintaining a healthy diet)
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Crashes have consequences on the body and the mind. Crashing takes away your stoke. Its also important to build yourself back up slowly. Mentally you need some time to rebuild confidence. So back down on the difficulty of what you used to be doing and work your way back up.

    I had a terrible crash a year and half ago which resulted in some very serious injuries. I got back on the bike as soon as I was cleared medically. I started back slowly and gradually rode more challenging terrain. It's good to push yourself, but don't do anything you know is beyond your ability. Your confidence will come back and your skill will improve a lot.

    As others mention: strength training (I believe I healed faster, thanks to lifting weights, building core strength and maintaining a healthy diet)
    Same for me. Broke my collarbone, cracked ribs, pelvis, sternum. Was back on the bike in a few months though, and have worked back up to riding as well or better than before. Only real difference is I don't go as fast, which is what I attribute my crash to. Have only had one crash in two and half years since, knock on wood.

  23. #23
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    I crash all the time, usually I can run it out, get a little rash, a little pedal bite, sometimes I get more. Big crashes once every season, these are usually at speed, sideways or over the bars. I should wear pads all the time, but I usually only wear them at the park.

    When I was riding mountain unicycles, the crash to mile ratio could be pretty high, especially if it was technical. In the beginning of my muni riding, I crashed so many times it wasn't worth counting. I broke my fingers multiple times, some of them aren't straight, it's hard to type.

    Crashing on snow is better, during snowbiking season I crash multiple times each ride, but I rarely get hurt even when I go over the bars; twice yesterday

    I worry most about landing on my knees, last fall I crashed on my R knee and it still hurts.

    At least biking is safe, you don't have to worry about oxygen as you would with kayaking.

    Any creek boaters out there?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    I've been riding like that since my late 30s when I realised that my contemporaries were disappearing through injury attrition.

    It's just not worth sacrificing your remaining bike years for an instantaneous thrill.
    But I have seen photo's of you descending an icy rock during some 24 hour ride thingy. Downhill on ICE - thrilling?

    OP, you descibe your bike as a low cost item. Find out what good grippy tyres the local guys ride in your area, this helps alot. OEM tyres can be slippy and compromised in specific situations as they are for general use, not all tyres are equal.
    Also, if this has not already happened, get checked out in your ride position.Being balanced within your bike with the ability to weight either wheel helps as well.

    As others have said, caution does creep in as we get older. Less racy, more adventure, take a safer route seems to be the catch cry.

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    ...Crashing takes away your stoke....
    Not necessarily. Bad ones certainly might, but it depends on the individual. Crashing tends to harden my resolve to do better and get it right. I was out doing fast group rides 10 days after I broke my collar bone. But at 60, I was still young and foolish.
    Do the math.

  26. #26
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    Just finished my first season with a dropper post on my old Trance. I was starting to slow down on descents because of a few crashes. I think flexibility and timing (reducing! and slower!) were contributing factors.

    The dropper post has drastically reduced crashing and reinstalled confidence and improved technical down hills where most of my worst crashes happen.

    I haven't gone to tubeless, yet, but I've got my tire pressure as low as it can go without snake bites. I believe this really helps, as well as a well tuned suspension system.

    All this doesn't help the worst crashes I had last year. On one, I wrecked my right thumb, falling sideways, at no speed, after waiting for a bud, then too nonchalantly trying to clip in. What an idiot! The next was a super slow mo endo that while chatting, I landed alright but my big ring caught my shin, just above the ankle, for a total of 11 stitches, another brilliant execution!

    When I think back to all my injuries, most if not all are brain farts. What's that say??

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Malcolm View Post
    But I have seen photo's of you descending an icy rock during some 24 hour ride thingy. Downhill on ICE - thrilling?...
    Oops! Yes, just realised my avatar is showing just that - slightly sideways on an icy slab, no studs. I was on my Pugsley and they have very good handling in that sort of situation.

    But in my defence there was a photographer there and I was damned if I was going to be photographed walking down it.

    The same spot claimed my daughter on her first lap in that race a few years later - she was ambulanced out.
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  28. #28
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    53 and ride like I did when I was racing mx. A tip for the op,look where you want to go. Most of my get offs are due to conditioning. Once I gain conditioning the tech areas are easily riden and get offs decrease.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    Oops! Yes, just realised my avatar is showing just that - slightly sideways on an icy slab, no studs. I was on my Pugsley and they have very good handling in that sort of situation.

    But in my defence there was a photographer there and I was damned if I was going to be photographed walking down it.

    The same spot claimed my daughter on her first lap in that race a few years later - she was ambulanced out.
    I ride with cycling shoes locked on to Egg Beaters. If I got off to walk I am sure I would have slipped over on that rock anyway - no win.

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  30. #30
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    One time, when I had just picked myself up from tipping over and falling down an embankment [QUOTE=Cayenne_Pepa;13066410]"When in doubt....be a man and dismount, I decided to play it safe and walk a loose rocky switchback. I put my left foot down and the back wheel swung out causing me to hyperflex my left knee. I was 1 year out from a knee replacement on that knee. It swelled up immediately, and hurt like hell. I drove shuttle for the next 2 days while on vacation. It actually turned out well as I had torn some scar tissue that needed to release, but that was a switchback that I could have rolled through 9 times out of 10.

  31. #31
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    At 69, I don't want to crash at speed or onto rocky trails, if I ever did want to. Yes, I am a bit slower than I have been in the past but not too much. I'm lots slower uphill and push the bike uphill a lot mostly because of respiratory issues. I'm walking rocky sections that I have ridden in the past. Some of my new found caution is due to the fact that most of my skiing and biking friends are now down with bad knees, hips, shoulders, or there's golf to play or a big game on the TV. Not me. I live for outdoor action.

    The same applies skiing. I still climb pretty quickly on skins, but I'm skiing less steep terrain if the snow is at all nasty. I agree 100 percent that I do not want to break anything other than the bike at this age.

    However, both skiing and biking, I'm still probably going more than a bit faster than experts would recommend for old farts.

  32. #32
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    I'll be 70 next month, still riding tech trails in CT 3-4 times a week. Combined with my previous off-road motorcycle habit, I've had numerous injuries over the years, including a broken arm, ankle, severely bruised kidney, 2 lower back surgeries, a shoulder separation, and too many cracked ribs to keep count of. Right now, I'm nursing a "significant" rotator cuff tear that made me buy a hitch rack because I can't lift a bike onto a roof rack anymore. Luckily the rotator cuff doesn't seem to effect my riding. Despite it all, I'm still in the top half of Strava times for many of our local segments (I'm too cheap to get the premium Strava to see where I stand vs. my age group). We have a group of retired guys who ride once or twice mid-week, although several are on IR right now recouping from various ailments. Planning to keep at it as long as possible.

  33. #33
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    55, one thing I haven't seen mentioned is that we don't improve as fast as we used to, just like we heal as fast. So you should advance your distance or technical riding slower than you might think. Your tendons and ligaments, as well as your balance and reflexes will take time.

  34. #34
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    After 20 years away + being 62 you are definitely riding trails beyond your capabilities. Try different (beginner) trails - there are plenty out there - to develop skills and cardio as well as needed muscle groups. Ride often enough on trails within your capabilities and you will be injury free and actually enjoy riding once again. Cheers!

  35. #35
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    I'm hitting 50 next month. 20 years of bmx and 25 years MTB. I've crashed many times, but always managed to get back in the zone quickly. This time it seems different. I head planted severely doing a nose manuel. Suffered a good concussion and been off any kind of activity for the last 8 months. Like many, it was not my first. Just started training mildly. It's winter over here and for the first time I'm worried of holding back when the season starts up. I think you might say "I'm afraid". (I said it). Responsibilities (said that too!)
    It has taking a toll on me and the family not to mention financially. I know that my reflexes are not going to be what they were. Hopefully I can work my health and skills back up.

  36. #36
    meatier showers
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    Quote Originally Posted by spiro440 View Post
    ... I head planted severely doing a nose manuel. ...
    That accident would indeed leave a mark on both body & ego. Best of luck to you.
    --sParty
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    That accident would indeed leave a mark on both body & ego…
    and that’s exactly what happens when a 70 year old tries to act like he’s a 20 year old


  38. #38
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    Is that you levity?


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  39. #39
    meatier showers
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    Quote Originally Posted by levity View Post
    and that’s exactly what happens when a 70 year old tries to act like he’s a 20 year old
    On that smashed face I detect a glimmer in the eyes and more than the faintest of grins. I'm guessing the crash must have been worth it.
    =s
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  40. #40
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    I'm 62 and don't have any problems like that.

  41. #41
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    Here is Chazpat on the 3rd lap of a recent 6 hour race...


    Old People Crashes-slip-fall-attorney.jpg
    Stick around if you're housebroken...

  42. #42
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    Fifty years ago I took a class on how to fall. It was called "Tumbling for Tots" - I was four years old. That instruction has served me well over the years: instinctive head-tuck-and-rolls, conservation of momentum, and making falling fun. The class probably could not be taught today for liability reasons. We dove onto thin gym mats and made giant toddler pyramids that collapsed into great heaps. I continue to crash biking and snowboarding just like I have been doing all along with no noticeable difference from aging.

    That said, I know where the OP is coming from; I gave up big ramp skateboarding in the '80's and then taking it up 30 years later - I could not fall like I did in my 20's. I attribute it to flexibility and loss of muscle memory. I believe these things could be gained back, the mind could relearn and the muscles could stretch and relax. I haven't pushed myself to gain these skills as much as I would love to ride the skate park the town built in my old stomping grounds - concrete is such a cruel and unforgiving teacher!

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cayenne_Pepa View Post
    "When in doubt....be a man and dismount - be well enough to ride the next day."
    That's no fun....
    When I was 53 / 54 I was a Pro bike patrol at a resort. I only had 2 crashes there and that was goofing off going where I shouldn't. For the most part I kept with the younger (early 20's) patrollers.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    On that smashed face I detect a glimmer in the eyes and more than the faintest of grins. I'm guessing the crash must have been worth it.
    =s
    Hard to tell if he's thinking 'totally worth it' or 'hooray morphine'.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Rager View Post
    Heck, sometimes getting off the couch feels like I'm getting up from a crash.
    LOL, I'm only 58 but I can see that day coming too!

    My attitude has always been, if you start saying "Maybe I'm getting too old for this sh**", then... you ARE.

    OP, try yoga to improve your balance and flexibility. I've had a couple of serious crashes but never any broken bones. When I was 42, I t-boned a car (that suddenly pulled off the shoulder of the road right in my path) at about 30mph and went sailing over it. I have no memory of what happened next but bystanders said I executed a perfect tuck-and-roll. Bad case of neck trauma, it hurt like hell for months but no broken bones.

    Also, a couple of years ago I took a 3-day trail skills class. You'd be surprised at what you think you know that you don't.

    And finally, some equipment upgrades might help. Since I got a 29+ I never ride anything smaller. Lots more margin for error. Also consider a dropper post.

    Also, to the poster who has broken every finger twice and both collarbones and seventeen ribs and maybe his dick, but never had a concussion, I'm thinking, "don't be so sure". It sounds to me like you're not playing with an exactly full deck.

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    OP, gets some skill classes. Get a full sus bike, easier on the back and more forgiving. Got gloves, knee and elbow pads? I'm big fan of yoga, core strength and flexibility are a great plus. And don't push beyond your skill set, at least not at first.

  47. #47
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    Worst I can brag about is cracked and broken ribs a couple different times and some 2nd/3rd degree road rash, all of which kept me off my bike for weeks to months at a time.
    But my friend, who is older, crashes regularly, some spectacular, but all slow motion and into rocks, trees, creeks, down hillsides, you name it, and he has yet to be hurt. Tore the seat out of his riding shorts once falling into brush, and rode the rest of the ride without even realising he'd done so. Didn't find out until he got up from a snack break and wiped his ass off with both hands and felt his bare ass where his shorts should have been. None of us had noticed, but all got a good look at his cheeky smile that day.
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    Here is Chazpat on the 3rd lap of a recent 6 hour race...


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    What? How did I get pegged with this?
    There are two types of people in this world:
    1) Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data

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    StickBowWhip, i hear what you are saying! as some others have mentioned i would definitely sign up for a skills clinic. it is amazing what they can teach you and what bad habits they can quickly point out that we, as riders, don't see ourselves. Then, practice practice practice the drills to make the moves second nature. I had a nasty spill trying to learn to manual, while being clipped in, bozo move for sure! if i had practiced the cover your brake drill then it likely would not have happened. I also think that stretching and strengthening your core muscles are very important. You can find some free exercise info on the BikeJames website that i feel has helped me with my strength and made my rides more comfortable (and i feel better the following day as well!). A bike upgrade may be very helpful as well, it is amazing how well a better bike will ride and handle and my azz and i really enjoy full suspension!
    Good Luck and check out if any skills clinics are coming to your area. I am in the southeast and can share the name of a guy out of Alabama that has helped me a bunch, just PM me. Mulberry Gap mountain bike 'resort' also hosts some various skills camps throughout the year so you can go there and stay for a few days learning and riding some great trails, plus the staff there are super cool and the food is good too! There is also LeeLikesBikes that does some clinics around the country. Good luck to you and tight spokes!

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    What? How did I get pegged with this?
    Chazpat, we have posted on many of the same threads and i think you are based out of Georgia (i am as well) but i somehow had a more mobile and fit picture of you in my mind! plus, i don't see any suspension on that walker, and just where is your helmet??

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    What? How did I get pegged with this?
    DJ tells me you are an endurance athlete with the needs of an elderly fellow.
    Stick around if you're housebroken...

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by gratefulron View Post
    Chazpat, we have posted on many of the same threads and i think you are based out of Georgia (i am as well) but i somehow had a more mobile and fit picture of you in my mind! plus, i don't see any suspension on that walker, and just where is your helmet??
    Yes I am in Georgia.

    My helmet fell off during the swim leg and that was one hell of a hairpin turn where that photo was taken.
    There are two types of people in this world:
    1) Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    DJ tells me you are an endurance athlete with the needs of an elderly fellow.
    I'm a youngster in this forum but if you want to send over a pretty young nurse to look after my needs, that would be awesome.
    There are two types of people in this world:
    1) Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data

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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    Yes I am in Georgia.

    My helmet fell off during the swim leg and that was one hell of a hairpin turn where that photo was taken.
    double Lol. i have found that adding a couple of tennis balls to the legs of the walker really helps cornering.

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by empire_builder View Post
    Also, to the poster who has broken every finger twice and both collarbones and seventeen ribs and maybe his dick, but never had a concussion, I'm thinking, "don't be so sure". It sounds to me like you're not playing with an exactly full deck.
    Dick is fine, no worries

    That said, after a crash last weekend that sliced open my shin, I had to tell my wife to go easy cuz my shin was sore

  56. #56
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    I'm 71. I take terrifying falls and never seem to get a scratch. My friend gets big injuries from any fall he takes. Over the past few years he has had a concussion and stitches to the head, broken humerus, a broken clavicle, and a cracked pelvis, all from different crashes.

    Couple of days ago, I'm riding a trail where recent rains have eroded a ditch across the trail, and a six-foot deep chasm on the downhill side. Riding through the ditch, I pulled out of my clipless pedal and stalled, fell to the downhill side, into the chasm. My friend shows up a few seconds later, can't believe where he finds me, asks whether I'm okay. Sure, just let me hand up the bike to you and I'll climb out.

    A little mud on me, not a scratch.

  57. #57
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    50 here, been riding for the last 10-15 years. Nothing serious, had a couple crashes, but no broken bones so far (knock on wood).
    Decided to go try an indoor bikepark. First time on a dirtjumper: 11 stitches
    I lasted about 45 mins.....
    Was just a stupid washout, not like I was getting any serious air.. I was still on the 'intermediary' section ffs...
    Anyway, I will go back. Ordered a new (better) helmet and pads though

    'Maybe I'm getting to old for this" : Like the doc said: if you are coming in here for the 3rd time, maybe consider NOT going to that park

  58. #58
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    Repack...that sounds just like me and my 71 year old riding bud who falls all the time due to Parkinson's and never gets hurt. I'm talking slow falls, often while he is just standing there. He wears knee and shin guards and elbow and forearm guards for protection. Last year may have been his last year of riding. We'll see when the snow melts and the trails dry out from the winter - we're all chomping to get back on the bikes.
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by vtdavey View Post
    Fifty years ago I took a class on how to fall. It was called "Tumbling for Tots" - I was four years old. That instruction has served me well over the years: instinctive head-tuck-and-rolls, conservation of momentum, and making falling fun. The class probably could not be taught today for liability reasons. We dove onto thin gym mats and made giant toddler pyramids that collapsed into great heaps. I continue to crash biking and snowboarding just like I have been doing all along with no noticeable difference from aging.!
    There's a local class at the public library titled 'Rolling for Retirees' to address the needs of us 50+ cyclists.
    Stick around if you're housebroken...

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Malcolm View Post
    I ride with cycling shoes locked on to Egg Beaters. If I got off to walk I am sure I would have slipped over on that rock anyway - no win.

    Eric
    I switched to flat pedals after my last crash that sprained my shoulder.
    Rear tire slid out too fast to recover on moist trail, and had I not been locked into the pedals I could've easily saved it moto style.
    Flat pedals along with dropper post allowed my 53 year old self to keep riding like my younger self, albeit a little slower on uphills.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strafer View Post
    I switched to flat pedals after my last crash that sprained my shoulder.
    Rear tire slid out too fast to recover on moist trail, and had I not been locked into the pedals I could've easily saved it moto style.
    Flat pedals along with dropper post allowed my 53 year old self to keep riding like my younger self, albeit a little slower on uphills.
    Yeah, I knew someone would chime in with that one. Not ready to change though, I still maintain a higher cadence, and locked-in controls the 'bounce' of pedal/saddle for me.

    Eric
    If I don't make an attempt, how will I know if it will work?

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Repack Rider View Post
    I'm 71. I take terrifying falls and never seem to get a scratch. My friend gets big injuries from any fall he takes. Over the past few years he has had a concussion and stitches to the head, broken humerus, a broken clavicle, and a cracked pelvis, all from different crashes.

    Couple of days ago, I'm riding a trail where recent rains have eroded a ditch across the trail, and a six-foot deep chasm on the downhill side. Riding through the ditch, I pulled out of my clipless pedal and stalled, fell to the downhill side, into the chasm. My friend shows up a few seconds later, can't believe where he finds me, asks whether I'm okay. Sure, just let me hand up the bike to you and I'll climb out.

    A little mud on me, not a scratch.
    i got lucky like that a few years ago: riding clipless down the Boyd Gap trail and got a little too close to the right edge, panicked a little, hit the brakes, and preceded to unclip and step off on the right side of the bike (like i always do...) and stepped.....down....onto....nothing! real dumbazz move there! i think i rolled a couple times on some big boulders and into some briar bushes. really lucky to not snap my leg or something. was okay as was the bike but really scratched up and dented my little thumb bell though!

  63. #63
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    Was enjoying a long no fall streak until yesterday.

    Old People Crashes-17359371_10155030893160502_5244614504664791940_o.jpg

    The good thing about crashing in snow is that almost always is a soft landing, all I had was a helmet full of snow and a bruised ego.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiRt DeViL View Post
    Was enjoying a long no fall streak until yesterday.

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    The good thing about crashing in snow is that almost always is a soft landing, all I had was a helmet full of snow and a bruised ego.
    Did you pose for that?

    I crash in the snow often, at least once every ride, not a big deal since it doesnt hurt; yours looks painful

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    Did you pose for that?
    Stayed down for the photo

    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse Ben View Post
    I crash in the snow often, at least once every ride, not a big deal since it doesn't hurt; yours looks painful
    The only thing that happened was a small bruise on my right shin by hitting the top tube on the way down.

  66. #66
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    53 and still ride some knarly stuff. I have been riding a long time. Busted many bones along the way. Ankles, wrist, shoulders , ribs, yada yada yada. I probably ride harder now than I did in my 30s and 40s. But that is mostly due to the advancement of the bikes. Remember the 70-72 degree head angles. I was over the bars on a regular basis. Now I usually have one or two hard mandatory get offs a year. Usually a pedal or crank strike on a rock hiding in the tall grass next to the trail while trying to set a land speed record.
    The 65.5 degree head angle on my Mach 6 keeps me from endoing often. And the stiff Fox 36 and DT Swiss wheels help me keep my lines. The 175mm dropper post gets the seat out of my way to lower my center of gravity. But even with all the new fancy rigs and gizmos, once in a while you'll still find yourself getting off the ground in a daze taking stock of all of you own moving parts and wondering " What the f*** just happened"? It's just part of the sport.
    Early last season I busted the side of my foot when I went over the bars after a crank strike on a hidden rock while flying downhill. Considering the sharp jagged rocks around me I was lucky. A few weeks later back on the bike I shattered my big toe when landing a hip jump and my foot came off the pedal and drove into the ground. Same foot and the side of my foot still was not healed. It took forever to heal. the toe still hurts and it wont bend any longer.
    And after 30 years of injuries, sometimes on a cold winters morning just getting out of bed I feel as if I fell down a flight of steps.
    But I wouldn't trade it for the world. Mountain Biking is my one true love.
    Ya gotta keep moving, there is no other choice.
    Last edited by CUP-TON; 03-24-2017 at 01:38 PM.
    Hello, my name is human and I came down from the stars.

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    Interesting thread, for every one "ride not to fall", "thrill not worth the risk" and "walk/slow down when necessary", there seem to be 10 posts proudly itemizing falling injuries.

    I suppose it all really comes down to your priorities. If mountain biking thrills define you, then just accept crashes and injuries as the price of admission. If you fall into the "I really, really can't afford an injury" camp, then slow down, walk when necessary, pick your trails carefully, work on your ride position/balance/strength and figure out how to optimize your ride to minimize OTB.

  68. #68
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    Last crash (Thursday) was just a crappy section of sidewalk. Open fracture of the elbow, ugh. Spent 6 weeks in Colorado riding the mountains almost every day but then I get clipped by bad city maintenance.
    The most expensive bike in the world is still cheaper than the cheapest open heart surgery.

  69. #69
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    These things have helped avoid and/or deal with crashes.

    1. No multi-focal glasses. I learned to wear contacts at age 54 and wear single focus contacts or single focus prescription sunglasses.
    2. Flat pedals and skate style (Five Ten for me) shoes.
    3. Dropper posts.
    4. G-Form knee pads.
    5. Some concentrated efforts or practice with jumps, track stands and cornering.

    I'm not sure if this is good or bad or her being smarter but my wife's become more cautious and remembers her falls more. What she does is just stop, walk or avoid what could be a crash vs slow or hesitate. I find MTB to be like skiing where hesitation buys you nothing. My wife's just avoiding it when she thinks the risk is high seems much better than the way I see many people slow down and get messed up. Put another way my wife won't let herself get caught too slow in a berm or get in trouble if she thinks she won't make a crossing or rock garden.

    I know it's mostly about your bike engine but gear plays a role in my not crashing. Weight weenie is out the window. My wife and I moved to modern style bikes that are trail/AM type or fat bikes. When I get on our classic Fat Chance or an older suspension bike with heirloom type wheels it feels like hiking an icy path in dress shoes by comparison.

  70. #70
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    And learning how to manual helps greatly for hitting jumps and drops without OTB.

  71. #71
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    Lol...58ish (July)...crashed a couple of endovers lately riding above my skilset on tight trails...worth the new front rim and the bear clawed back from the Texas scrub oaks that have limbs that could withstand a direct nuclear blast and not even distort or bend...but have had an adventurous life and not stopping now or in the near future...sorry about your cracked ribs, had a friend lately thats 61 yrs young "bulldog" a donkey to the ground on a whim and he broke a rib as well...
    We had all better take supplements and workout every other day with some cardio in the routine as well, otherwise we are asking to lose our core balance and activeness....

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by TooSteep View Post
    I suppose it all really comes down to your priorities. If mountain biking thrills define you, then just accept crashes and injuries as the price of admission.
    It doesn't define me but thrills are a big part of mountain biking for me. I think like a lot of people I don't accept crashes but am more in denial of them. Over time you tend to forget the last bad one and once more feel invincible, somewhat anyway. I'd like to think I've learned a few things though and hope my good fortune continues.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stickbowhip View Post
    After 20+ years away from mountain bikes I've recently rediscovered what fun I've been missing. Problem is, during the past month that I've been back at it I've crashed twice - with the last one leaving me with a couple of very painful cracked ribs. This wasn't part of the plan!

    It seems my balance and skills are not what they used to be, and probably will never be again. At 62 years old, that reality has given me a wack upside the head. Where I used to bounce and roll I now just stick - hard!

    How do you old people (like me) do it? Have you had to slow down your riding to sedentary speeds on beginner trails? Or do you still give it hard and take some chances? I'm sure with practice I'll get a little better. At least at judging what I am capable of and what should be walked around. But in the meantime this learning curve hurts! At my age broken bones are really not an option I want to put up with.

    Or maybe it's finally time to give that golf thing a whirl.
    Hard to say what you might be doing wrong or different because we all have our own level of risk tolerance or thrill-seeking tempered with mitigation. I was never much of a daredevil in my younger days and when I got my first mtn bike in 1991, I was 30 years old and there were no risky areas to ride in my immediate area - mid Michigan. At least none that I pursued. That bike was used for little more than a hybrid type path bike until moving to CO a few years later. That indeed opened up a world of possibility but again, I kept it pretty tame.

    Taking it hard and taking chances is something you can and maybe need to dial back. These concerns you have are not subtle hints - lol. Were it me getting a rash of painful injuries, I'd have no problem keeping within some margins of ability or at least speeds to quell damage and pain. I'm a wimp on the pain threshold meter.

    I moved onto a hard tail bike in 2003 and have another recently purchased bike now but over those past 24 years of CO life, I've had some very active riding seasons and some that were somewhat on the back-burner meaning my ownership / riding days really doesn't fit the definition of 26 years experience in the way it does for many others.

    Simply put, I ski the mountains and ride the bike much the same way. Been known to push it a bit too fast and boogered up -tail over teakettle- a number of times on the slopes or the bike trails with magnificent success for a guy who never brushes the edge of dare-deviling.
    As I age, I'm finding my brain is a bit slower at processing as I drive, ski, bike or run. We have to process hundreds of things in very short order to take in the line that is best, decipher other dangers or surrounding actions, obstacles, threats etc...
    ie; If I can't speed up my processing, then I need to mitigate perception, decision, reaction - PDR- with applicable or reduced speed allowing more time.

    Worst biking related issue was a downhill run on the rigid bike in 1998 or 99 distracted for a sec then front tire in a rut slamming me and bike, -Ground versus right shoulder. Numbed arm temporarily immobile for a while. Separated shoulder and no surgery needed or at least wanted.
    An OTB once on a day I forgot my gloves and that tore up my hands good on a rocky waterfall looking drop.
    OTB in a park full of cacti - landed on my back and thankfully the camelbak saved me from a pickery mess.
    One spectacular OTB that felt so slo-mo, it seemed I was watching someone else do it. No injury at all. That's a pretty lame list of things considering the time span but I'm happy to see it a short list and without broken bones. A few spills here and there in recent times/years but all those above go back 10 years or more.

    I returned to motorcycling after a 20 year break and I've found some safety related stats and a few forums that were very helpful keeping it all in perspective for me. Surviving the ride is of utmost importance. Injury and fatality stats (FARS) follow a trend as well. Aged riders won't often bounce back nearly as well or as quick, or some at all.

    Slow speed riding and maneuvers will really help with fine motor skills and balance. Even a figure 8 type of riding in loops of both directions. Looking through the turn as you are riding also.
    Some of the guys I ride / rode with did PLP - parking lot practice like these slower speed patterns, and warm-up time for 20 minutes before a big ride. We've all seen some that look like the motorcycle handles them versus them handling the bike. It's often these simple little details that make the difference. Work on the things that give you trouble, think of it as homework.

    Travis said it early on; "... hanging with some incredible rider's. " As with your trying golf idea, many times I ride or ski with people that allow me to 'play up' my game.

    ~b
    Last edited by bachman1961; 04-29-2017 at 10:46 PM.
    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

  74. #74
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    I can definitely feel the effects of a crash longer now at 55 than I did even a couple years ago. Hit a small dirt jump on my local trail this morning that I normally get a small amount of air or just wheelie the front tire down off of but I guess I hit it with a little more speed and a little too much weight transferred back and the bike just launched straight up off the lip. I was not prepared for this and the ground made its presence felt quite quickly. My butt landed on the back tire, spinning the still-airborne front wheel to the right sending me and the bike off the side of the trail. My throat hit the stem and I'm not sure what my chin hit but its got a deep gash in it. I think I got a handlebar rammed into my right thigh resulting in a deep thigh bruise. I'm sore and still not sure what went wrong. I rode a little more cautiously (slowly) the rest of the trail. But I'll be back out there as soon as my work schedule allows. And riding just as hard as before. The thrill of the ride and the fun experienced is what keeps me going after the crashes.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by orvil View Post
    I can definitely feel the effects of a crash longer now at 55 than I did even a couple years ago. Hit a small dirt jump on my local trail this morning that I normally get a small amount of air or just wheelie the front tire down off of but I guess I hit it with a little more speed and a little too much weight transferred back and the bike just launched straight up off the lip. I was not prepared for this and the ground made its presence felt quite quickly. My butt landed on the back tire, spinning the still-airborne front wheel to the right sending me and the bike off the side of the trail. My throat hit the stem and I'm not sure what my chin hit but its got a deep gash in it. I think I got a handlebar rammed into my right thigh resulting in a deep thigh bruise. I'm sore and still not sure what went wrong. I rode a little more cautiously (slowly) the rest of the trail. But I'll be back out there as soon as my work schedule allows. And riding just as hard as before. The thrill of the ride and the fun experienced is what keeps me going after the crashes.
    See, when I read that type of a description of what hit what, a gash to the chin and stem to throat, I think of the forces at work and what could have been just slightly more energy to put a rider in serious shape.
    I have no problem going on after any of my former crashes but I'm not sure my problem was riding too hard. Just a bit wonky, sloppy or tired.

    My mistakes on the trails (lots of my mistakes don't mean a fall or crash) make me wonder if there isn't something a bit more intuitive when riding solo and the added opportunity for more focus and practice. When I ride with others, (almost all my riding) we are gabbing away and I'm not tuned in like I might be if out for practice. I guess i should go try it. Always been a bit more of a small group rider.

    The other day on some flat single-track moving at a good pace, I found the new bike going a bit long/late into the turns. (By that, I mean I know it wasn't "the bike" but the pilot)

    I'm on a newer frame geometry and went from 26" to 27.5 plus. I know my riding position relative the the headset and rear wheel is a bit different so I imagine it's just getting myself more experienced and acquainted with the new bike. I have maybe 50 miles on it and that was one of very few times I got it up to speed into flat turns.
    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Malcolm View Post
    Yeah, I knew someone would chime in with that one. Not ready to change though, I still maintain a higher cadence, and locked-in controls the 'bounce' of pedal/saddle for me.

    Eric
    58 here.

    I cracked a rib my 1st time out on clipless pedals about 10 years ago, but I stuck with it (including getting out of the woods that day). Now when I bail, I'm out of the clips without realizing it until I'm picking myself up & dusting off.

    Last fall I had an OTB event & face-planted into some soft forest loam. A few inches in any direction would have encountered roots or rocks. All I had was a bloody nose & cut lip. It could have been missing teeth or worse. (I was out of the clipless pedals though.)

    All because I was trying to pick up speed through a section I had ridden many times successfully. It increased my awareness of trail features spaced precisely one wheel-base length apart.

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    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.... (Ecclesiastes 9:10)

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by TooSteep View Post
    Interesting thread, for every one "ride not to fall", "thrill not worth the risk" and "walk/slow down when necessary", there seem to be 10 posts proudly itemizing falling injuries.

    I suppose it all really comes down to your priorities. If mountain biking thrills define you, then just accept crashes and injuries as the price of admission. If you fall into the "I really, really can't afford an injury" camp, then slow down, walk when necessary, pick your trails carefully, work on your ride position/balance/strength and figure out how to optimize your ride to minimize OTB.
    Yeah, crashing is what happens when you don't care enough.

    Since I last posted I picked up a gnarly shin laceration that got me on antibiotics, then I clipped a tree and picked up a shoulder "gouge" that took forever to go away, then last week I washed out on a lunch run above my house and trashed my knee ...
    big telfa pad under the khakis keeps the blood from seeping through

    Yeah, I need to stop crashing, not sure how, but it's on my mind. I suppose it's a good thing I can still earn a living while hobbling about.

    At least I haven't broken any fingers lately; it makes typing harder.

  78. #78
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    Safe to say we all would do well to find that perfect zone of fun, fitness and adventure or challenge so we get out of it (recreation of choice) what we are looking for. Coming home a little scraped-up sometimes can make you feel more alive. Coming home every day banged up might be something else altogether.... lol. Not everyone needs that thrill of skidding the bike along the rails of a thin gravel trail with big drops to the side. I did that a few times the other day and backed right off. I knew I wasn't feeling my norm nor had the control on my newer bike. I'm still getting to know it. This learning curve and individual risk tolerance reminds me of skiing.

    Been skiing for a bit over 40 years and I went though a few contexts of thrills or peer pressure versus sanity and margins of safety or sensibility. It's really a personal thing about finding / defining that "bliss".
    Some enjoy the scenery, can take it all in at a moderate or slower pace and have the byproduct of less fear or stress and soaking in more of that experience. I imagine photographers can take forever and a day getting down a mountain - lol.

    At some point, I realized many of the people I'd met or skied with along the way had a sense of pride about no spills or falls and at the time, I doubt I'd given it a second thought but later on, I came to realize some of these were people who likely progressed to a certain point and were happy. They were either not interested in advancing or they were more ego-sensitive and falling just wasn't worth some cost of pride.

    On the other hand, many I knew and skied with seem to grow and improve and it was the occasional pushing the limits a bit beyond or the eventual crash that let them test the margins, find limits and move on to troubleshooting errors to enjoy the challenge and progress from intermediate to advanced or expert. I imagine they had times when out with family/friends of lesser ability they took "a day off" just to ramble around and have fun with group.
    That's where I'm at with skiing and have been for a good many years. I can go have fun with the kids or the advanced skiers, yet I truly have just as much fun bringing friends or family to the sport and spending a day on the bunny slopes much like doing lessons.

    With biking, I need to advance myself and get back to the homework of skills, balance, coordination and intuitive nature .... mostly because I've gotten lazy but partly because I feel I've lost a bit of ground by having a new bike ie: I need to dial myself in.
    Lots of biking for the past few years had been the camaraderie factor and the guys are a bit more path or hybrid oriented. I'm almost 56 and two others are 65 and one my dads age, 78. Lately, I've found another group to ride with and they are about 15 years my junior. I can ride other days with them so this is helping me in fitness and getting me back to the trails that offer adventure and challenge. Exactly where I'll get more accomplished.

    On the old bike, I felt more control and centered so I know this new one is just me getting to know it and the newer bike geometry ,, bigger wheels, riding position and such. I'm as excited as ever about biking and feel like my focus should have me riding better, safer and more adventurous than anytime in the past 10 years.


    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

  79. #79
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    55, in my third year of mtb. I enjoy it too much to think about slowing down or giving up. Had my fair share of crashes. I think the key to lessening injury is to go with it. Tuck and roll as a rule. Use caution when you can. I try to keep my bike on the ground for the most part.
    I race 6-10 times a year in the over 40 class. Never had a DNF, came in second for the season last year. There are some guys I ride with that are older than me. My "crew" is mainly composed of 30 something guys that are better riders than me. I do my best to keep up. I'm not quite as fast as they are. That's okay. They aren't as old as me...
    It keeps me sane and in shape so I'll keep pedaling until I can't.
    Rock on fellow old guys!

  80. #80
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    Just turned 55. Had my worst crash in a long time the other day. Pretty stupid too.
    I had just ridden a directional trail the wrong way by mistake (signage was not clear on direction) then rode it in the correct direction and it was a blast! while continuing up the access trail to find the real drop in, I was absent-mindly looking for the trail when I hit a slightly off camber part of the trail and took a tumble down an embankment and whacked my left arm pretty good just above the elbow. Thought I had broken it and still had a mile and a half to ride out to the parking lot. Urgent care visit x-rayed and determined there was no fracture but soft tissue damage. Turns out after I got home I followed up with PCP and he thinks I might have partially torn my left bicep. Now waiting for referral for MRI to see whether I'll need surgery or not. Doc said no riding until everything gets figured out.

  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dougr View Post
    Just turned 55. Had my worst crash in a long time the other day. Pretty stupid too.
    I had just ridden a directional trail the wrong way by mistake (signage was not clear on direction) then rode it in the correct direction and it was a blast! while continuing up the access trail to find the real drop in, I was absent-mindly looking for the trail when I hit a slightly off camber part of the trail and took a tumble down an embankment and whacked my left arm pretty good just above the elbow. Thought I had broken it and still had a mile and a half to ride out to the parking lot. Urgent care visit x-rayed and determined there was no fracture but soft tissue damage. Turns out after I got home I followed up with PCP and he thinks I might have partially torn my left bicep. Now waiting for referral for MRI to see whether I'll need surgery or not. Doc said no riding until everything gets figured out.
    Ugg, being off the bike is my worst fear.
    Took my 64 year old brother, who doesn't ride often, out riding last weekend to the new trail system down in Canon City. We mostly stayed on the lower trails- Mutton Bustin and Recycle. But I wanted to climb Hard Time again. So I asked if he was up for it and he said yes. But about halfway up I was waiting on him to get through an easy section and as I was watching him he went over the edge. I was like "YIKES". There is no easy place to go over the edge on the Hard Time climb. I rode back and he was dragging his bike up all while laughing his ass off. The only injury was a brand new WTB seat I had just put on for him the day before. I was so afraid he was going to get hurt and my sister-in-law was not going to let him come out and play anymore. He usually comes home a little bloody when he rides with me but usually no long term damage..Those old(er) guys are tough.. lol
    Hello, my name is human and I came down from the stars.

  82. #82
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    I'm only 66, but on a blood thinner ("rat poison"), so I dare not crash, bruise, or cut myself. This is due to my heart condition (arrhythmia, AFIB) which supposedly increases my risk of having stroke. I have to avoid anything which might cause internal bleeding.
    I also suffer from veinous insufficiency in my calves, and must wear knee-high compression socks.
    I crashed on the beach last Nov when I didn't put enuff oomph into jumping a very small ditch. To my surprise, my front wheel stopped and I went over the bars in the wink of an eye. Lucked out and didn't get hurt. I landed on sand and my helmet absorbed the shock as I ploughed a furrow with my visor. A cheap lesson from the Universe! Much thanks!
    So now I go slow. I even stop to enjoy the view now and then. I am not going to crash.

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by PlutonicPlague View Post
    I'm only 66, but on a blood thinner ("rat poison"), so I dare not crash, bruise, or cut myself. This is due to my heart condition (arrhythmia, AFIB) which supposedly increases my risk of having stroke. I have to avoid anything which might cause internal bleeding.
    I also suffer from veinous insufficiency in my calves, and must wear knee-high compression socks.
    I crashed on the beach last Nov when I didn't put enuff oomph into jumping a very small ditch. To my surprise, my front wheel stopped and I went over the bars in the wink of an eye. Lucked out and didn't get hurt. I landed on sand and my helmet absorbed the shock as I ploughed a furrow with my visor. A cheap lesson from the Universe! Much thanks!
    So now I go slow. I even stop to enjoy the view now and then. I am not going to crash.
    I'm also on rat poison due to being susceptible to blood clots (I'm 53). I've got good fitness so I try to be on the fast side on climbs and flats and don't worry if I'm slower descending. But I also go slow when I'm tired or just want to relax and I try to always take the time to enjoy the view.
    There are two types of people in this world:
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  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stickbowhip View Post
    After 20+ years away from mountain bikes
    Twenty years? My first mountain bike was a 2001. By today's standards, it was just AWFUL. I may be older now, but with my strength, experience, and today's modern bikes, I can kick ass over anything that was rolling twenty years ago.


    Quote Originally Posted by Stickbowhip View Post
    It seems my balance and skills are not what they used to be, and probably will never be again.
    I don't buy into that. My skills are aways improving. I've had serious setbacks over the years, but always rebound and emerge better than before.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stickbowhip View Post
    Or maybe it's finally time to give that golf thing a whirl.
    😲

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyIron View Post
    I don't buy into that. My skills are aways improving. I've had serious setbacks over the years, but always rebound and emerge better than before.
    That's great (not sarcastic!) but it's unrealistic to think that will always be true, time waits for no one.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  86. #86
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    Crashes oh boy!

    I started mountain biking at 56 years old. I was cocky, had a plan of managed risk and was coming to mountain biking from the background of being well into the top one percent of alpine skiers. I thought all of these things were going to serve me well.
    I got Lee McCormacks books and set up practice. I quickly got so I could put the handlebars within inches of the pavement in tight turns and do a half way decent manual. My senses of dynamic balance are superb. So, how'd I do! Well I lacked a few senses and some things from alpine skiing did not translate as well as I expected.
    One of the first problems was biking with stu and pid; two characters I should never bike with. Hubris will bust your ars every time. I could easily sense the point of dynamic balance over the cranks and throw the bike into a tight high speed flowing turn but seemed to have a total lack of any reasonable sense of fear and with it, common sense. The minute I could feel that powerful flow I was on skis not a bike. Six times, SIX TIMES and I still could not get it through my head that you cannot clear a GD tree by simply moving your inside hand in. Them fk'n handlebars are NOT ski pole and are still out there.......BAM! Forearms and thighs through the pickers, gravel and poison ivy. Damn boy! you ain't on a pair of skis. I had a permanent case of poison ivy and looked like I tangled with a cat in a gunny sack.
    Each crash I have had was not injury serious so, I would check myself out quick, rubber neck around to see if I might end up on You Tube and then sit and contemplate how I should have seen it coming.
    I have backed off as I still have not developed a healthy enough sense of fear.
    During crashes, I don't seem to have any inclination to eject and land of my feet and I don't seem to have any tendency to brace with my hands. Nope, its the tumble slide, spin, self arrest response to crashes. I once even managed to tuck and kayak roll the bike back up onto the wheels down a steep embankment. Given my response to crashes I have also found in necessary to temporarily abandon the clip in pedals.

    Crashes aside, I have had far worse problems from over exertion. I tap into that flow and forget I am not using gravity as a means of propulsion.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by PierreR View Post
    I started mountain biking at 56 years old. I was cocky, had a plan of managed risk and was coming to mountain biking from the background of being well into the top one percent of alpine skiers. I thought all of these things were going to serve me well.
    I got Lee McCormacks books and set up practice. I quickly got so I could put the handlebars within inches of the pavement in tight turns and do a half way decent manual. My senses of dynamic balance are superb. So, how'd I do! Well I lacked a few senses and some things from alpine skiing did not translate as well as I expected.
    One of the first problems was biking with stu and pid; two characters I should never bike with. Hubris will bust your ars every time. I could easily sense the point of dynamic balance over the cranks and throw the bike into a tight high speed flowing turn but seemed to have a total lack of any reasonable sense of fear and with it, common sense. The minute I could feel that powerful flow I was on skis not a bike. Six times, SIX TIMES and I still could not get it through my head that you cannot clear a GD tree by simply moving your inside hand in. Them fk'n handlebars are NOT ski pole and are still out there.......BAM! Forearms and thighs through the pickers, gravel and poison ivy. Damn boy! you ain't on a pair of skis. I had a permanent case of poison ivy and looked like I tangled with a cat in a gunny sack.
    Each crash I have had was not injury serious so, I would check myself out quick, rubber neck around to see if I might end up on You Tube and then sit and contemplate how I should have seen it coming.
    I have backed off as I still have not developed a healthy enough sense of fear.
    During crashes, I don't seem to have any inclination to eject and land of my feet and I don't seem to have any tendency to brace with my hands. Nope, its the tumble slide, spin, self arrest response to crashes. I once even managed to tuck and kayak roll the bike back up onto the wheels down a steep embankment. Given my response to crashes I have also found in necessary to temporarily abandon the clip in pedals.

    Crashes aside, I have had far worse problems from over exertion. I tap into that flow and forget I am not using gravity as a means of propulsion.
    Man, that was like reading about a bad day for Superman...




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  88. #88
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    Crashing sucks! I took my Pugsley out for a beach and dune trail ride on Monday, but heard its headset talking to me. It squealed and groaned a little, begging for an overhaul. So I took it back home and loaded my old '75 Motobecane (cheesy mid 70's road bike) that I had reconfigured into a squirrelly-handling single speed pavement cruiser. It was windy (15-20mph with higher gusts to 25+). I was tooling down a 10' wide cement-paved beach path, and the section I was riding was protected from the wind by a dune that ran parallel to the path.
    I'd just dined at a local eatery, and was carrying a small bag full of leftover French fries in my left hand, while still holding the grip, and the bag started developing a tear in it. I simply wrapped my hand securely around the bag and continued on, riding one-handed.
    My car was parked about a half mile away.
    A very strong and sudden gust hit me as I pedaled past a gap in the dune, and I lost control, but managed to get my left hand back on the grip...but too late! Down I went, at about 8 mph. My left side took a hard hit in two places: my pelvic/hip area, and the back of my shoulder. I have a big ugly bruise on the hip/pelvic area, but my rib cage really took a hit. I have 5 broken/crunched ribs, 4 of them with two breaks in them...all in a group on the upper rear side of my rib cage.
    Two days and nights in the hospital, much pain, and more to come as my ribs heal.

    "What happened to the French fries?" They spilled all over the trail, with me in the middle of the pile. The Crows were already circling and cawing. Not quite a "murder" scene, but I looked up again to make sure that there were no Vultures in the flock.

  89. #89
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    Crashing sucks, part 2:
    My Bell "Stoker" worked like a champ, absorbing the shock to the left side of my head, which was the last part of my body to hammer the cement. The foam didn't get crunched too badly (just a few shallow dents), but the plastic shell has a crinkle, some scuffs and abrasions in it. My eyeglasses didn't even get knocked off.
    I got to talk with some of my friends who work the ER at the hospital, with whom I hadn't conversed with in recent months.
    Ah...I gave all the beers and ciders that were in my fridge to the friend who drove me home from the ER. I'm on prescription painkillers for the duration.

  90. #90
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    For certain, that is a combo "hooray morphine, thoroughly worth it, happy to have survived" grin!
    My frowning grimace morphed into something similar, but only after the ER crew finally got around to X-raying me... after waiting on a gurney for 7 hours for my turn to come around. ER was backed up with 5 patients more seriously injured than myself, and the hospital short on staff. I was feeling really dehydrated by the time I got X-rayed and okayed to receive the morphine, and given some water to drink. After that, I was grinning' like a skunk!

    Quote Originally Posted by mattyice View Post
    Hard to tell if he's thinking 'totally worth it' or 'hooray morphine'.
    However, my crash wasn't worth it. The %$@*& Crows got my French fries.

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by PierreR View Post
    I started mountain biking at 56 years old. I was cocky, had a plan of managed risk and was coming to mountain biking from the background of being well into the top one percent of alpine skiers. I thought all of these things were going to serve me well.
    I got Lee McCormacks books and set up practice. I quickly got so I could put the handlebars within inches of the pavement in tight turns and do a half way decent manual. My senses of dynamic balance are superb. So, how'd I do! Well I lacked a few senses and some things from alpine skiing did not translate as well as I expected.
    One of the first problems was biking with stu and pid; two characters I should never bike with. Hubris will bust your ars every time. I could easily sense the point of dynamic balance over the cranks and throw the bike into a tight high speed flowing turn but seemed to have a total lack of any reasonable sense of fear and with it, common sense. The minute I could feel that powerful flow I was on skis not a bike. Six times, SIX TIMES and I still could not get it through my head that you cannot clear a GD tree by simply moving your inside hand in. Them fk'n handlebars are NOT ski pole and are still out there.......BAM! Forearms and thighs through the pickers, gravel and poison ivy. Damn boy! you ain't on a pair of skis. I had a permanent case of poison ivy and looked like I tangled with a cat in a gunny sack.
    Each crash I have had was not injury serious so, I would check myself out quick, rubber neck around to see if I might end up on You Tube and then sit and contemplate how I should have seen it coming.
    I have backed off as I still have not developed a healthy enough sense of fear.
    During crashes, I don't seem to have any inclination to eject and land of my feet and I don't seem to have any tendency to brace with my hands. Nope, its the tumble slide, spin, self arrest response to crashes. I once even managed to tuck and kayak roll the bike back up onto the wheels down a steep embankment. Given my response to crashes I have also found in necessary to temporarily abandon the clip in pedals.

    Crashes aside, I have had far worse problems from over exertion. I tap into that flow and forget I am not using gravity as a means of propulsion.
    Dude, EPIC!!
    Sometimes, you need to go fast enough that the trail is a blur to find clarity. -- Wild Bill

  92. #92
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    1st. Crash (of many i'm sure )

    back on the 11th. I'm riding a little single track, running thru a sharp, flat curve ( that I have ridden countless times ) and all of a sudden, both wheels just shot right out from under me. so fast I couldn't even react before hitting the ground. turns out, I broke 3 ribs and damaged my Sternum and shoulder blade. so, just riding easy now but, looking forward to getting back at it.

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uwibami View Post
    back on the 11th. I'm riding a little single track, running thru a sharp, flat curve ( that I have ridden countless times ) and all of a sudden, both wheels just shot right out from under me. so fast I couldn't even react before hitting the ground. turns out, I broke 3 ribs and damaged my Sternum and shoulder blade. so, just riding easy now but, looking forward to getting back at it.
    Ouch, wishing you the best in your healing.
    There are two types of people in this world:
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  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    Ouch, wishing you the best in your healing.
    Thanks man.

  95. #95
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    Over the bars, steep rocks and roots....

    My arms were totally pumped, and I had just slowed down a bit.

    Fork dove into the rock....and over I went...

    Hit my chin on a rock...it is a little bit sore...rolled out of it and into the trees...

  96. #96
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    Yesterday I had enough brain power to put my G Form knee pads on. Too often they're with me and not worn.

    That dirty scuff on the outside of the pads was a lot better than a cut and bruised knee.
    ƃuoɹʍ llɐ ʇno əɯɐɔ ʇɐɥʇ

  97. #97
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    Not much good can come from a 25mph otb but the one I had last week ended up about as good as one could hope for. My handlebar tagged a desert tree (yucca) on a high speed corner and I was launched 20 or 30 feet where I mostly face planted into the dirt, thankfully (and luckily) it was soft dirt.

    I got up right away and could hardly believe my good fortune, which seems strange but that's what it felt like at the time because mid-air I assumed something was going to get broken for sure. My buddy came up a minute or so later and I was trying to explain how I went down but couldn't quite remember and figured I must have washed out a front wheel or something like that. It wasn't until about an hour or so later that I remembered the yucca was the culprit and I just assumed I didn't recall that at the time because of the adrenaline and all but later my friend pointed out that I probably had a minor concussion, which is kind of scary if that's true.

    Also I was feeling really good at the time and chasing a KOM, which happened to be mine. Just so you all know the level of intellect we're dealing with here.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stickbowhip View Post

    How do you old people (like me) do it? Have you had to slow down your riding to sedentary speeds on beginner trails? Or do you still give it hard and take some chances? I'm sure with practice I'll get a little better. At least at judging what I am capable of and what should be walked around. But in the meantime this learning curve hurts! At my age broken bones are really not an option I want to put up with.
    I used to be a super athlete running 10-15 miles a day and knocking out 25-30 miles on the bike on top of it. Not counting weight training. Then I got injured in an accident. Spinal injuries. I never recovered. Game over.

    Just go back into MTB after 5 years of rest and had to put the ego aside and slow things down. The competitive side of me screams when casual riders go blasting around me, but ya have to know your limits. We don't heal like 20 year olds. A fall can have major consequences.

    It's hard, but slowing things down and selecting the right line really counts. If something looks iffy then get off the bike and walk it:-)

  99. #99
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    Riding some rooty single track that I've ridden a million times. It goes across the face of a hill - uphill on my left, down to a creek on my right.

    I knocked my bars on a tree, lost my balance and teetered right with nothing but air to step on... tumbled about 12 feet down through brush, a fallen tree, and landed in the water (only an inch or so). Got myself and the bike out of there while the adrenaline was still flowing and rode the 7km home...

    Hopefully I can be in the saddle riding at least fire/forest roads in another 3 weeks.

    Geesh... it's really screwing up my riding season

    Old People Crashes-img_1553.jpg
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    [WTB] 1987 Cannondale SM800, 20", Pink with airbrushed graphics.

  100. #100
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    Nice job on the arm!

    Never broke an arm, got my wrist, all my fingers many time, AC joint a couple times.

    I picked up some more stitches, machete to the thumb while clearing trail. Note to self, do not try to use two machetes at the same time; that shite is for the movies!

    Interestingly, my back has been remarkably pain free for the past few months, always nice to have a little more flexibility without muscle spasms.

    Chronic pain, esp back pain, will resolve to a degree with continued use. The old adage about rest is possibly the worst thing you can do. It's not a cure all, but building tolerance to discomfort, building suporting cose muscles, combined with remapping those nerve pathways seems to be the best bet to resolve pain.

    Got a new big hit bike coming, it's nearly guaranteed I have some pain coming my way

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