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Exercise - Sports - Mountain Biking

Mountain biking is riding a bike on different types of off-road trails.

Mountain Biking

What is mountain biking? 

Mountain biking is riding a bike on different types of off-road trails. This requires technical skills, balance, speed and endurance to effectively navigate across rough terrains. It can be a challenge as you view the world as a natural playground of winding trails. There are tree roots, water crossings, loose rocks, steep ascents and vertical downhill sections which are all an opportunity to test your abilities. 

Mountain biking can be such a fun activity to get yourself into, you get to spend time outside in nature and get to see it all from a different perspective. It’s nerve wracking and exciting but before you get started there are some things you should know to keep yourself safe. 

Tips for mountain biking

Keep the momentum: it may seem confusing but when you come to difficult terrain, it can be beneficial to speed up rather than slow down. Keeping momentum is key. 

Stay loose: you need to let your bike do what it needs to do. So keep your own body loose and leave the hard work to the bike. Hover off the seat slightly when you are riding over different obstacles such as rocks or roots. If the terrain is more technical then the more your bike will have to work, don’t fight it. 

Shift your own weight: you will without a doubt meet some rough terrain which includes declines and inclines. When building up to a difficult pitch, move your own weight forward, lean forward and keep the center of gravity forward to ensure traction is maintained. 

Exercise – Sports – Mountain Biking

       Mountain Biking

Mountain Biking FAQs

What is mountain biking?

Mountain biking is riding a bike on different types of off-road trails.

What are the benefits of regular exercise?

Regular exercise can help with weight loss, boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and can have many benefits on your emotional health too.

Is Cycling Good For Weight Loss?

Cycling is an effective form of cardio exercise. It can help you burn fat, calories, and lose weight.

What are some tips for getting into mountain biking?
  • use all of your gears
  • learn basic maintenance skills
  • take it easy with the brakes
Can An Exercise Bike Help You Lose Weight?

The exercise bike is an excellent indoor cycling option for boring calories. Whilst not as effective as a treadmill or cross trainer, you can burn 600 calories or more per hour depending on intensity.

How you should climb difficult terrain

If a trail goes downward, then you should shift your weight in the opposing direction. Moving your weight over the back wheel and behind the seat, this helps ensure that you don’t go head first over the handlebars. 

Take it easy with the breaks

At one point you may be tempted to pull on the brake and hard but you need to try and resist doing this. The brakes on mountain bikes are already very powerful and so at a high speed you don’t want to be pulling on the brakes suddenly. Instead modulate the speed slowly. Before getting too technical, ensure you have learnt how to adjust the speed effectively and how to maintain it also. 

Use all of your gears

Mountain bike trails often change terrain, you may go from a smooth surface to uphill to downhill. Therefore, it’s always important to anticipate any changes that may occur and be ready to change gears if needs be. This will help with your momentum and keeping you on track. 

Set the suspension

The majority of mountain bikes have suspension forks as well as shock absorbers. These help to stop large bumps impacting your ride, but the correct active positions will need to be set so that this can work properly. It’s crucial to get to know your bike so that you can prepare yourself and understand how to open and lock up your suspension if it ever needs adapting. Therefore, no matter what you trail you end up on you will be ready to tackle it. 

Decide on your target path

You often go where your eyes go so try not to fixate yourself too much on the places that you don’t want to go such as a rock in your path. Instead, try to look past these obstacles to avoid going towards them. Keep your eyes looking forward and look as far down your trail as you can as well as using your own peripheral vision, avoiding any obstacles directly around you. 

Know how to do basic repairs

Due to the rugged terrain, often mechanical issues occur more than on pavement routes. Brushing up your basic repair skills can minimise any risk of being stuck in the woods with just your bike. If something breaks, you will then have the knowledge to fix it. Good skills to master include;

  • Fixing a flat tyre
  • Repairing broken chains
  • Replacing a cracked or bent derailleur hanger

Pack the essentials

Often in deserts or forests there are not many shops and sometimes you may be biking for longer than you first thought, this may be due to getting lost, a mechanical issue or bumpy terrain slowing you down. So, pack extra water and food for your journey. Also make note that sometimes in some of your locations there may not be much phone signal so make sure that someone knows where you are and you have the tools to get yourself sorted if an issue arises. Knowing you have everything you need, you will be able to enjoy your ride a lot more. 

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