Mountain Biking Tips and Advice
Mountain biking is a great sport, and new people are taking it up all the time. It gets you out, pushes you physically, and you can enjoy nature. Before you begin mountain biking, however, it’s worthwhile consider a few tips to make sure you have the best possible mountain biking experience.
Sitting comfortably on your mountain bike is important. You need a comfortable saddle, as you’ll be going over some rough ground. Spend the money and treat yourself to a good gel-filled saddle for mountain biking.
Having the saddle at the correct height is vital, too. It will help you exert the greatest pressure on the pedals so you’ll go further from each stroke and expend less energy. To do this, have the saddle at a height so that your leg is around 90 percent extended when at the bottom of the stroke. This will give you the power you need to propel you faster and harder.
Know Your Gears
With mountain bikes averaging 20 gears, you need to know how to use them. Although there’s no substitute for real experience, some basic knowledge beforehand is good.
It’s harder to pedal with the higher gears, but each stroke will go further, while the lower gears are easier to pedal and will help you go up hills more easily. Practice shifting gears until you know which gear is best for which terrain. This will vary from bike to bike, but it’s an important part of mountain biking, where suddenly shifting ground can require frequent changes of gears.
There are different types of pedals. A number work with normal shoes, some require special cycling shoes with clips that hook into the pedal so you can’t slip, making your pedalling much more efficient.
There are also those with a trap on the front, called a rat trap, and the foot pushes against this so you can exert more pressure. What you choose depends on you. Each has its own advantages. Don’t decide immediately. Become used to the bike and to mountain biking and see what will work best for your cycling.
You’ll spend plenty of time coasting downhill when mountain biking, and you need to know the right way to do it. You shouldn’t sit back on the saddle. Instead, stand on the pedals and stay close to the saddle but not on it. Don’t lock your knees, but do have your arms bent. In mountain biking terms, this is called the attack position. It will give you the freedom to move, but you’ll also be very aerodynamic.
The Mountain Bike
Anyone who’s gone shopping for a mountain bike will know you can spend anywhere from $100 to thousands for a bike. Buy the best bike you can afford. The cheap ones won’t be very good. For serious mountain biking, you need good suspension. The more research you do on bikes before you buy, the better the bike you’ll find in your budget.