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TourDeLanta - Urban Single-track Mt.Bikes - Atlanta Pages


Drop-offs Start small and work up. The basic drop-off technique is to approach at a medium speed, pedals level, freewheeling, good foot forward. As you near the drop compress your forks a little while shifting your weight back all in one motion – almost a small manual off the edge. Aim to keep the bike level by shifting your weight forwards or backwards and pulling up or relaxing with your arms. Try to land both wheels together and match the transition you are landing in. Absorb the landing using your arms and legs. Try adding tricks once you’ve nailed it, to spice it up a little.

Wheelie drops

Wheelie drops Find yourself a small flight of stairs outside your work, college, home, wherever. Start practicing your wheelie drops safe in the knowledge that you can ride them out if it goes wrong and you end up dropping the front wheel by mistake.

Big curbs

Big curbs. You can find some pretty cool stuff to jump off if you’re prepared to look for it on your way to work. Big curbs can feel like drop-offs when you simply pull-up off them, but hit them flat-out and you’ll meet the ground a lot smoother.

Speed bumps

Speed bumps To practice your distance judging, go and find some decent-sized speed bumps. Treat them as doubles or tabletops and jump them. There’s an ever-increasing number of them around town centers now, so you shouldn’t find it too hard to locate some to jump.

Riding steps

Riding steps In the urban jungle stairs make a great substitute for roots so try to practice on as many as possible. Stairs generally have square edges that attract pinch punctures, so make sure you’re running fairly hard tire pressures before you give this a go.

Wall ride

1.)Approach the wall or bank at a moderate speed – you may need a couple of test runs to make sure you get that right. Set your pedals level, get your good foot forward, covering the brakes, as you freewheel. Focus on the wall and visualize your line. 2.) Prepare As you come into the wall shift your weight centrally, slightly biased towards the rear. Lift the front wheel slightly by pulling back on the bars and start moving your weight away from the wall and concentrate on getting the tires to get as much bite as possible. 3.) Angle/lean As you’re on the wall, you want your bike wheels to be at least 45 degrees on it. While you are pushing into the wall, concentrate on riding along it rather than coming off of it at this stage. The most important thing is the angle of the bike. Really commit to it or you’ll be faced with a wall slide. 4.) Wall ride Try to make a smooth arc onto and along the wall. Smoothness is the key here. It’s also important to learn which way you naturally wall ride as opposite wall rides are fairly hard to learn. As a rule of thumb, if you ride right foot forward you wall ride to the right and vice versa for left foot forward. 5.) Landing As you exit the wall ride look at your landing and adjust the bike accordingly, with weight shifts fore and aft. Sometimes you may have to pop a small hop off the wall to get the bike in the right position for landing, again touching down with both wheels for the smoothest landing. Absorb the shock with your arms, legs and lastly the bike’s suspension. Sorted!

Bunny hop

1.) The approach the object at the required speed to clear it easily. Then get your pedals level, good foot forward, freewheeling into your approach. A good way to practice this and judge distance is trying to take off on the white lines of car parking spaces. Place something that won’t wreck your wheels to gauge the height. 2.) Prepare for take-off As you near the object, start shifting your weight away from your front wheel while compressing your body using your arms legs and back – practice this by compressing your suspension and getting used to the rebound and the bike’s ‘light’ spot. This is where the magic happens. 3.) Take-off Once you have found your bike's ‘light’ spot you explode this movement upwards, by squatting down with your arms, legs and back, and uncoiling yourself like a spring by pulling hard upwards on the handlebars. At the same time scoop down, back and upwards on your pedals to lift the rear wheel. Pointing your toes towards the ground helps with this. 4.) Flight Once you’re airborne focus on keeping the bike level in the air and looking at your landing for any hazards. Keep the bike level by adjusting your weight fore and aft, keeping a tucked position on the bike. Now you want to start thinking about touch-down, adjusting your weight accordingly. 5.) Touch-down As you come into land try to get both wheels to match whatever transition you’re landing on. Slightly back wheel first helps if you are landing on flat ground. Absorb the landing with your arms and legs then lastly your bike’s suspension, focusing on the run-out. Manuals The manual forms an important part of riding, be it over a puddle, roots, rocks and more. Learn it at different speeds and add it to you trail riding. Once it’s dialed you can manual for as long as you want given the right hill.

The Wheelie

Difficulty: 1-3 (easy to pop, hard to roll) Dazzle Your Buds: Feel like a kid when you pop one; look like an old pro when you roll along on one wheel. How It’s done: Find a slight incline; the resistance will help keep your front wheel up. Use flat pedals for easy escape, or don’t clip in. Pedal in a low or medium gear, then push down on one crank while pulling up on your handlebar. Slide back on the saddle so your weight is over the rear wheel. You’re up. Once that’s easy, pop up and keep pedaling, using your rear brake for control.

The Nose Wheelie

Difficulty: 5 (it takes guts) Dazzle Your Buds: This trick tells the world, “I know how to handle this bucking alloy bronco!” How It’s Done: Build up speed, then shift your weight back and gently feather the front brake, lifting the rear wheel upward. Let your body weight roll forward as the back end lifts. The key is control: Too much brake and you pile-drive yourself, too little and you just slow down. Don’t lock up the front wheel; let it keep rolling. Done perfectly, you’ll stop just as your weight reaches the balance point. Hold for a second, and enjoy the cheers.

The Flick

Difficulty: 3.5 (it’s all in the lift) Dazzle Your Buds: Be a hero as you clear debris with a quick flick. How It’s Done: This trick works best on baseball- to softball-sized rocks and pinecones. Ride to one side of the object, as close to it as possible without touching it. Just as the part of the front tire in contact with the trail passes the object, slightly unweight the front end of your bike and flick the handlebar toward the object, in one smooth motion. Lift too much and the wheel rolls over the target; lift too little and you’ll end up in the bushes as the front tire grabs and darts to the side. Just right, and the tire’s rotation will fling the object up and to the side. Note: Pinecones and rocks can rip tire sidewalls. Bottles and trash? Flick ‘em for fun, but pick them up off the trail afterward.

On-the-Fly Whiz

Difficulty: 3 (requires multi-tasking and male parts) Dazzle Your Buds: Pee without braking, and they’ll proclaim you ready for a Grand Tour. How It’s Done: On a slight downhill or with a (good) friend pushing you, drop your right crank arm to 6 o’clock and pivot your hips to the right, for a clear shot over your shoe and drivetrain. Hold onto the center of the bar with your left hand; with your right, roll down your shorts, relax and have at it, keeping an eye out for road obstacles. Note: Most Euro pros let fly to the non-drive side, but we like staying on the right shoulder, away from passing cars.


The manual forms an important part of riding, be it over a puddle, roots, rocks and more. Learn it at different speeds and add it to you trail riding. Once it’s dialed you can manual for as long as you want given the right hill.

1.) Approach the manual at a medium speed, freewheeling, good foot forward, pedals level, fingers covering the rear brake. The ideal place to learn the manual is an empty car park with a slight downhill slope as it makes the move easier once you’ve got yourself in the right position. 2.) Prepare. When you feel you are at a comfortable speed focus ahead and give the front suspension a little bounce as you shift your weight back, while pulling up and back hard on the handlebars. Aim to nearly sit on the rear tire. The rear axle is your pivot point, so get behind that. Remember the back brake is your best friend in this maneuver. 3.) Weight movement/brake. The most important part of the manual is weight position and brake modulation – it’s a very fine balance. When I manual I tend to have my hands in line with my shoulders and my feet always pushing forwards while balancing it out with the pull of my arms pointing my feet up at 45 degrees. 4.) Brake. The rear brake will always save you from looping out and lying on your back. Don’t grab at your brake – learn to feather it and only use it if you feel like you are going to loop out. Sit on your bike stationary and put it on the rear wheel, raise the front end until you feel the back wheel wanting to roll out from underneath you – this is the sweet spot that your bike needs to be in to do the manual. 5.) Pump, riding out of the manual. Once you have the bike sat in the manual get used to pumping it along with your arms and legs, pushing the bike forwards and learning when to lay off the brake to increase your speed, and when to add some brake if it all starts getting out of shape.

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About TourDeLanta - Urban Single-track Mt.Bikes - Atlanta April 11, 2014 2:39 PM anonymous

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