This is a collaborative post.
Mountain biking is not an activity that most people would put on top of their favorite-things-to-do list. However, once you get the hang of it, it can be an extremely fulfilling experience. Thanks to it, not only will you get a boost of adrenaline, but you also have a chance to enjoy breathtaking views.
With that being said, if you have just bought your entry-level mountain bike and are at the start of your mountain biking adventure, you might be a bit intimidated. Do not worry, though, as everyone has to start somewhere. After learning the basics and some practice, you can improve your mountain biking skills faster than you might think.
To help you with this process, we prepared a list of the most common mountain biking mistakes. They include but are not limited to braking too hard, riding with the wrong tire pressure, not focusing on the trail ahead, placing toes at the end of the pedals, and sitting down too much. Read on to find out what rookie errors you should avoid doing.
Braking Too Hard
One of the most common mountain biking mistakes beginners tend to make is braking too hard. If you have never been on a bike before, you might feel a bit lost at first. However, it is worth noting that this feeling will go away with time.
First of all, you have to remember that brakes are your security net. When riding downhill, you will likely find yourself going faster than you would have liked. In such situations, you just have to apply light pressure on the brakes and slow down.
Another important thing you should bear in mind is that your tires will not be stable on rough terrain. This means that if you brake on rough terrain, the pedal will move on the rim of the wheel. This can lead to an accident, so try to avoid it at all costs.
Riding With The Wrong Tire Pressure
If you want to enjoy your mountain biking experience, you should pay attention to tire pressure. While most people think that increasing the pressure will improve their ride experience, it is actually quite the opposite. You need to remember that too much pressure will make your tires inflate more. As a result, your bike will be harder to control.
On the other hand, too little pressure will cause your tires to lose air quickly. It will also lead to vibrations that can be extremely uncomfortable. If you want to know what tire pressure is the right one, check out the manufacturer’s specifications.
Not Focusing on The Trail Ahead
Mountain biking requires focus. If you are new to this activity, you might find yourself getting distracted by all of the amazing views around you. While this is understandable, it is not recommended. For instance, if you are admiring the view, you might miss a turn or something dangerous.
To avoid this, try to focus on the trail ahead and be on the lookout for any new obstacles that might pop up along the way. Always keep both hands on the handlebars at all times and your eyes on the road. Otherwise, you run the risk of getting into an accident.
Placing Toes at The End of The Pedals
Another common mountain biking mistake that beginners tend to make is placing their toes at the end of the pedals. This is a big no-no, as it can lead to a number of problems.
While still learning mountain biking, it is crucial to remember where each part of your body should be placed. This way, you will avoid tipping over or falling off your bike. It is also important to remember that there are two elements that can help or harm your ride experience – brakes and pedals.
For instance, if your toes are at the end of the pedals, your feet might hit the ground when you are applying pressure. As a result, you will lose control over the bike and fall down. Therefore, make sure that your toes are at the center of the pedal.
Sitting Down Too Much
If you are new to mountain biking, chances are that it might take time for you to get used to the saddle position. If so, there is no need to worry! You just need to give yourself time and practice to get used to it. However, no matter how long you take to get used to it, there is one mistake you should avoid making – sitting down too much.
Sitting down too much can cause a lot of damage and discomfort in the long term and should therefore be avoided at all costs. This position puts unnecessary strain on your knees and spine and can result in pain and discomfort after a certain amount of time spent on the bike. Additionally, using your legs makes it easier to lean and shift your weight around.
The Bottom Line
Mountain biking can bring a lot of fun and enjoyment for those who love it. Just like any other activity, though, it requires practice and patience.
Hopefully, this article gave you some insight into common mountain biking mistakes beginners tend to make. If you want to avoid them, remember to focus on the trail ahead, ride with proper tire pressure, and spend time getting used to the saddle position.
If you want to get better at mountain biking and enjoy every moment, remember these rookie mistakes and try not to make them again! This way, you will learn how to ride safely and enjoyably.