Have you ever tried a hike on a bike? Enjoying peaceful nature, no cars, total body workout, leg burning & lung-crushing climbing, the thrill of descent, the moments of perfect focus…. Sound interesting? Then you may really enjoy mountain biking.
Among various types of mountain biking and mountain bikes (Cross-Country, All-mountain, Enduro, Downhill…), Cross-country/Trail is a common style in mountain biking, and is the most suitable for beginners. Its terrains are a mix of smooth and rough paths, and different levels of drops and corners, on either natural or man-made trails. Cross-country bikes are lightweight with wheel sizes between 27.5”-29”, either hardtails (front suspension) or full suspension.
Here are a few basic skills in mountain biking:
- Always keep your eyes 15-20 ft ahead for obstacles, curves, slopes, etc.
- Always keep your index fingers on the front and rear brakes, and apply brakes slowly and lightly to prevent skidding.
- On non-technical trail sections, keep your knees and elbows slightly bent.
- On technical trail sections, bend your knees and elbows, and flatten your back almost parallel to the ground.
- On Uphill: Lean forward to get more traction on your front wheel, adjust your seat to a higher position, if required. Accelerate on pedaling. Believe it or not, the slower you pedal, the harder it gets.
- On Downhill: Lower the seat and lower your center of gravity. On bumpy downhills, stand on the pedals to absorb the shocks.
What do you wear and bring for mountain biking?
- Wearing a helmet is a must.
- You will also need gloves, padded MTB shorts, kneepads, and a cycling jersey for your comfort and safety.
- Sufficient water and some energy bars for the long hours of intense activity
- Repair kit in case you get a puncture.
- And don’t forget bring your cycling partners with you, enjoying good time with good friends is priceless.