The Infamous Bunny Hop- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    The Infamous Bunny Hop

    I recently got my first mountain bike from a friend for real cheap, an 05 specialized hardrock, I used to BMX when I was younger so I like doing freeride types of stuff and hop and jump over anything and everything for the hell of it. I know I'm a beginner but I was wondering if this bike and its weight is the limiting factor or more my skills. It feels relatively heavy to me, and I can hop up curbs and maybe a few inches higher but that's it. Would a lighter bike/components help me out or should I just work on the whole user error sort of thing.

  2. #2
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    There are a few things going on here. First of all, the bike is bigger relative to your size compared to your BMX bike. The riding position is different and the front suspension fork works against you when you try to push off to get any kind of air. You have to relearn how to do it and then keep doing it until you can get the kind of air you think you should.

    When I got my full-suspension bike I could not bunnyhop that thing to save my life...

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    Yeah all good points, can you do it now or still a no go? I guess like everything practice makes perfect.
    Last edited by calikid22; 02-23-2008 at 07:31 PM.

  4. #4
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    You need to preload the suspension and then continue with the same technique you always use. Seatpost getting in the way is going to be the biggest limiting factor by far as you can't really tuck the bike up under you as you would on a BMX bike. So curb height+ is good enough for trail riding with saddle in pedaling position.

  5. #5
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    There is a you clip out there which is fairly helpful as well. Just can't seem to find it right now.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by crux
    There is a you clip out there which is fairly helpful as well. Just can't seem to find it right now.
    This one? http://youtube.com/watch?v=QiIunH47qew

    Originally posted in this thread: http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=74422

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by calikid22
    can you do it now or still a no go? I guess like everything practice makes perfect.
    I can only do it when I'm clipped in. If I'm trying it not clipped in then I might get an inch or two at the most.

  8. #8
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    clipped in = easy.

    On my STP = easy.

    On an xc bike you can't put your weight back like you can on a bmx or STP. It prevents you from getting the typical height. If you drop your seat, it'll help, but the longer chainstays will still hinder you.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by calikid22
    It feels relatively heavy to me, and I can hop up curbs and maybe a few inches higher but that's it. Would a lighter bike/components help me out or should I just work on the whole user error sort of thing.
    Definitely NOTHING to do with weight. I can bunny hop my 48 lb DH bike at least 2' vertical and I'm only 150 lbs. And you don't need clips. BMX flats are where it's at. A search may help you find better advice on the BMX bunny hop technique because it's been discussed many times before. I'll try to break my approach down (I'm sure many others do things a bit differently so check their advice out too - it may work better for ya). I learned watching young Thomas Vanderham in Kranked 3 bunny hop his recycling bin in slow motion. I jogged it back and forth for 10 minutes analyzing his body position frame after frame. Maybe you'll find a similar clip to help make sense of this move.

    Roll in at a nice easy pace - like 5 mph or a bit faster. Squat down hard with your legs and arms through the center of your bike, maybe kicking a bit forward. You've got to get your weight back momentarily behind the saddle and pull your front wheel up. The max height of your front wheel dictates the apex of your trajectory. As you pull your front wheel up, drive your body weight forward with your hips toward your stem (obviously taking care not to go too far) while tucking your legs up underneath you. This weight transfer forward is very key as it will help unload weight from your rear wheel and allow it to rise and follow the natural trajectory initiated by your front wheel. Then throw your handlebars forward to project distance. Your ass should move from in front of the saddle and end up way behind it as you prepare to land.

    Speed bumps can really help get the feel for the mechanics of a bunny hop. It naturally lofts your front end up and then you can play with the timing and dial your motion in. I think the hardest part is just getting the front end up and lunging your weight forward. After that, the rest comes naturally. It takes a while to get the feel so don't expect to become Jeff Lenosky overnight. Height comes with smoothness and refinement. Keep practicing on the trail and have fun with it to take the tedium out of "drills". It's a really useful skill and can get you out of trouble. Good luck!

    EDIT - hey that video link is a great demonstration! I should have watched it first . . . then I could have saved 10 minutes.
    Last edited by Dave99; 02-25-2008 at 09:07 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave99
    Definitely NOTHING to do with weight. I can bunny hop my 48 lb DH bike at least 2' vertical and I'm only 150 lbs. .
    but i bet i can hop my 20lb bike for much longer before my arms fall off.

    my bmx hop is over 44 inches. weight helps if your riding just for fatigue, you can hop a heavy bike high,you just get tired fast.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hand/of/Midas
    my bmx hop is over 44 inches. weight helps if your riding just for fatigue, you can hop a heavy bike high,you just get tired fast.
    Nearly 4 foot. So you can hop a young child. I want to see a video of that before I'll believe it.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hand/of/Midas
    but i bet i can hop my 20lb bike for much longer before my arms fall off.

    my bmx hop is over 44 inches. weight helps if your riding just for fatigue, you can hop a heavy bike high,you just get tired fast.
    For sure. My point is you can bunny hop a lot higher than 3" with a really heavy bike. I'm confirming dude doesn't need to spend a dime to improve his vert. It's all technique.

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  14. #14
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    Soooooo many bunny hop threads it makes my head spin. Don't waste your time on here asking how to get better, just go practice. Its the only way

  15. #15
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    I thought it was an Easter Bunny thread...

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