Most people can ride a bike for exercise but not everyone can ride a bike down the side of a mountain. It takes strong riding skills and the proper equipment to downhill mountain bike.
Due to the risk of this sport it is important to have the proper bike and protective gear for riding.
One needs to make sure ones bike is suitable for downhill riding. Bikes are built for different purposes so one should make sure their bike is built for downhill riding. Some features of downhill bikes are advanced suspension, more weight, disc brakes, etc. Verify that your mountain bike is equipped with a set of reliable brakes preferably disc because they provide better stopping power over other types of brakes.
Make sure one wears the necessary protective gear. For example riding gear consists of a downhill helmet, goggles, knee/shin guards, elbow guards, chest/shoulder and back protector, etc. This is not meant to be an exhaustive list of required equipment but this list will give you an idea of what is needed to protect yourself from injury.
Downhill biking is a sophisticated adventure sport requiring specific advanced biking skills. Even though it all starts with basic bike riding one must hone their biking ability and build up to downhill biking. From jumping over rocks, descending from extreme heights, and navigating sharp turns one must be prepared to maneuver the bike through the course. For the first-time downhill rider, here are a few tips to consider (keep in mind that situations are different and these items might not apply).
- Put your seat down so you have room to maneuver the bike.
- Stand on the bike and stay flexible.
- While riding and when needed pulsate the brakes rather then locking them up.
- Try to find the line in the trail with the least obstacles.
- Maintain enough speed so you don’t lose your balance.
Many more advanced technical skills are needed in order to ride downhill. This is just a list of ideas to consider.
Where to ride:
Some ski slopes have been enhanced for downhill biking to take place in the summer. Check out Google to find downhill trails in your area.
Check out YouTube and search for downhill mountain biking to get a taste of the action. Watching videos is a great way to learn more about the sport.
So what ever trail you choose to ride have fun and be safe. See you on the trials.