7 Important Ways To Improve Your Mountain Biking Skills
There are many ways to improve your mountain bike climbing skill, but to be honest there are only two things you need to know.
If you are looking to improve your cycling performance you need more than just strong legs. While a strong lower body is essential for power, as you begin to ride longer, more challenging trails, you will soon realize the importance of also having strong back and core muscles. A weak back and mid-section will limit your stability, balance and control on your bike. In this article, we are going to suggest 7 basic tips that can go a long way in improving your mountain bike climbing skill:
Climbing hills On Your Mountain Bike:
Traction is the key to successfully climbing hills on a mountain bike, this can be hard to achieve on loose rocks, roots and mud as is common place in most mountain biking areas. The biggest problem to overcome is the rear wheel spinning and slipping as you climb, or the front wheel lifting and you ending up doing an unforced wheelie. To get the right traction, you just need to learn how to distribute your weight evenly across the bike whilst feeding power to the right areas of the bike.
Here Are Some Tips To Improve Your Mountain Biking Skill:
Be Strong and Flexible
When you’re climbing or pedaling a smooth trail, you often want to stay in the saddle. But when you’re riding technical terrain, especially descending, stand on your pedals with a slight bend in your knees, waist, and elbows. It’s an athletic stance that helps absorb bumps in the trail. And it creates a frame to prevent you from getting pushed around in the process.
Focus On Long Distance
If you concentrate on things that you need to avoid on the trails, most likely you will be hitting those rocks or trees instead of skipping them, especially on tracks with lots of roots and rocks. There is a scientific explanation to this phenomenon and concentrating on long distance known as target fixing helps you in smoothly avoiding obstacles on the track. Just concentrate on long distances along the track line during your ride for a smoother riding experience.
Maintain A Good Cadence
A higher cadence on a lower gear is more efficient over the long haul than a higher gear with a cadence that is too low. Trying to power your way through a taller gear might seem faster, but it will drain your energy reserves more quickly. When you maintain a higher cadence and stay in the aerobic zone, your muscles can clear out the lactic acid to prevent a buildup. But if you push a really high gear at a slower cadence, chances are you’ll go anaerobic and your muscles won’t be able to clear out that lactic acid. Consequently, you’ll burn out too soon.
Try to not slow down too much for turns and obstacles during the climb. Repeatedly getting yourself back up to speed uses up a lot of energy. This also means picking up speed before you hit the steep sections, so that you can carry more momentum into them.
The good rotation of the cranks or so-called cadence determines your performance on the trail. The professional riders devote considerable efforts to develop the habits of good spin. Your jerky downwards stroke or square pedaling will waste your valuable energy by shifting your balance. Good spins help you in maintaining traction on loose terrains and provide efficient riding.
The good cadence habits involve full circled pedaling with the right gear. High gears will make it difficult to accelerate your bike while very low geared pedaling will just jerk your bike without effective acceleration. So, choose the right gear to synchronize with 70-100 pedaling RPMs and you will easily ride through the rough terrains and climb hills.
Keep Your Brakes Dialed
Hydraulic brakes are pretty low maintenance, but when there’s air in the line they are no fun. Keep an eye out for decreased performance and explore different pad options. Metallic pads are powerful, wear slowly, and generally make more noise. Resin pads are softer, wear quicker, and are quiet. I prefer resin pads on my front brake and metallic in the back.
Focus on Where You Want to Go
When you are on the trail, look where you want to go, especially on trails with plenty of roots and rocks. If you look at the rock or tree that you are trying to avoid, you will probably hit it. Instead, focus on the line that you want to take.