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Thread: Shredding Berms

  1. #1
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    Shredding Berms

    Hey guys, whenever i ride, i can never quite shred a berm how i want to. Can you guys give me any tips? Should i be braking into the berm, braking before the berm, not braking? If anyone can give me any pointers i would appreciate it greatly, also feel free to post any pictures of you guys flattening berms!

  2. #2
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    Drop your shoulders and lean your whole body to the inside of the berm while keeping your head straight up and down and looking thru the turn. It's tricky because good form on flat corners is the opposite where you lean the bike and not the rider. Funny thing is I was better at berms when I was using poor form (always leaning into turns) and now have to focus to rail berms! If it's a sizable berm, no brakes. Shallow berm, brake hard and short before entering only and stuff the tires into the berm using your outside foot and outside bar pressure and don't lean your body over as much as you would in a large berm.

    Have FUN!

    G MAN
    "There's two shuttles, one to the top and one to the hospital" I LOVE this place!!!

  3. #3
    bikeaholic
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    If you can just remember to weight the outside pedal and push on the inside grip that will do wonders for your cornering in general, especially with banked turns. Keep looking through the turn and point your hips where you want the bike to go.

  4. #4
    Locs on Spokez
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    The big ones here are how far ahead you're looking through the corner and body position. Try to find a pumptrack nearby, that'll be your best bet to get the technique down.
    Ground Steeze. @iggy_strbac

  5. #5
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    Cheers guys, also, should i be braking at all? Like on most freeride video's i watch guys seem to pull hard on the back brake to make it sort of slide and throw loads of mud up?

  6. #6
    bikeaholic
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    You're always better off getting all your braking done before initiating a turn. Brake, turn, then power out of it. If you come in too hot and have to scrub a little bit of speed mid-turn, just feather the rear brake. Worst case you skid the rear a little and over-steer, which actually can help as long as you're ready for it. Using the front brake mid-turn makes the bike want to go straight, making it more difficult to turn.

    Throwing dirt around with your rear wheel is one of the best feelings, just do it sparingly and in the right spots. Depending on where you ride, people that care about trail erosion may rightly get on your case otherwise.

  7. #7
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    Also- make a conscious efrort to push your seat against your inner leg during a berm.

    Example- while entering a left hand berm, seat should be up against your left inner thigh.

  8. #8
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    just point your hips - if you point your hips in the direction you want to go, your momentum will naturally carry you in that direction, your technique for angling the bike will change depending on the corner but your hips will never lie...

    that being said, for berms i...

    1) dont brake, its a berm... just go fast (if you do have to brake, do it in a straight line as hard and as late as possible but almost never in the turn itself, the goal is momentum out of the corner so entry speed is much less important than exit speed)(as mentioned above though, you can trail brake the rear through the turn to tighten your apex but i only use that as a last resort or if i need to get to a sneaky inside line)
    2) weight the outside pedal
    3) countersteer and point your hips in the desired direction
    4) allow the bike to "fall" into the corner and then try to get on the power as soon as possible, (you can try to match the lean angle of your body and your bike to the angle of the berm but that can be a lot to think about when your learning, just get really comfortable and confident with leaning and "falling" into the corner, using the g-force of the corner to pop yourself back fully upright at the end

    dont ever lean your body more than your bike or "hang off" the bike, you're just asking for trouble...

    good luck! id find some berms your already comfortable with and just slowly ramp up the speed until you feel more confident with the skillset, point your hips!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by chup29 View Post
    just point your hips - if you point your hips in the direction you want to go, your momentum will naturally carry you in that direction, your technique for angling the bike will change depending on the corner but your hips will never lie...

    that being said, for berms i...

    1) dont brake, its a berm... just go fast (if you do have to brake, do it in a straight line as hard and as late as possible but almost never in the turn itself, the goal is momentum out of the corner so entry speed is much less important than exit speed)(as mentioned above though, you can trail brake the rear through the turn to tighten your apex but i only use that as a last resort or if i need to get to a sneaky inside line)
    2) weight the outside pedal
    3) countersteer and point your hips in the desired direction
    4) allow the bike to "fall" into the corner and then try to get on the power as soon as possible, (you can try to match the lean angle of your body and your bike to the angle of the berm but that can be a lot to think about when your learning, just get really comfortable and confident with leaning and "falling" into the corner, using the g-force of the corner to pop yourself back fully upright at the end

    dont ever lean your body more than your bike or "hang off" the bike, you're just asking for trouble...

    good luck! id find some berms your already comfortable with and just slowly ramp up the speed until you feel more confident with the skillset, point your hips!
    Ok cool, thanks a lot, just one more question, if i want to throw dirt about with my back wheel, what do i do?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by DHMTB View Post
    Ok cool, thanks a lot, just one more question, if i want to throw dirt about with my back wheel, what do i do?
    the cheating way to do this is just to lock the back wheel as you initiate your turn, but people will make fun of you for this and it just ruins turns and trails, what i would do is find a flat stretch of dirt and make 4/5 flat corners, just kinda mark them out with sticks or something and then get used to weighting your front wheel through the corners and allowing the back end to slide around a little, the more you practice, the more comfortable you'll get with the sliding feeling and soon you'll be pulling kovarik-esque drifts around long corners. You can also break the back end loose with a "cutty" and essentially this is what you've been asking to do, basically your doing a very quick sharp turn, weight the suspension, point your hips and push the back end with your legs while turning the front and youll feel the back slide and then catch and a bunch of dirt will fly everywhere, very useful for blowing up piles of mulch and sand around school campuses or next to your friends, and way cooler than skidding haha

  11. #11
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    get hold of a copy of flowtonic, on dvd, from simon lawton, it's full of great info on correct techniques, also consider tuition from a certified/qualified coach. it's the best money you will ever spend to improve your riding.

  12. #12
    Yes, that's fonetic
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    Quote Originally Posted by DHMTB View Post
    Ok cool, thanks a lot, just one more question, if i want to throw dirt about with my back wheel, what do i do?
    Why? If you're throwing lots of dirt you've usually broken traction. The glory shots you see of dirt in the air are for dramatic effect. If you "throw loads of mud up" you're most likely screwing up berms.

  13. #13
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    The glory shots of dirt spray aren't just for dramatic effect (tho there certainly is a lot of that in those vids), it is an essential skill for changing direction rapidly in tight corners at mach speeds (not a beginner move). Chup has it right - they are NOT skidding nor braking. You pull off the maneuver by unweighting the pedals and kicking the back of the bike out with your hips while sharply countersteering. It can be a lifesaver in a tight situation and takes lots of practice. That's why I like straight 60a hard compounds for my rear tire as the really sticky ones are harder to drift.

    Have FUN!

    G MAN
    "There's two shuttles, one to the top and one to the hospital" I LOVE this place!!!

  14. #14
    Yes, that's fonetic
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    True, cutties are a learned and valuable skill, but it sounds like the OP just wanted to know how to throw dirt/mud.

  15. #15
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    The good time to use brakes is when you will crash without them.

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