3 Essential Mountain Bike Skills To Make You A Better Rider

by | Feb 17, 2023 | Skills, Bike, Skills & Setup, Sports

We all know that practice makes perfect but how often do we actually set aside the time to practice the basic mountain bike skills so we can improve our riding and enjoy the experience all the more? Part of the issue can be an uncertainty around what skills to practice and how to break it down. If I have limited time on the bike, which skills should I work on that will me most beneficial?

Let’s take a look at 3 foundational mountain bike skills that are easy to practice on the fly during your normal riding habits. If you really want to progress, spending dedicated time focusing on skills such as these can see much quicker progression!

Essential Mountain Bike Skill 1: The Track Stand

Often seen as just a party trick, the humble track stand is one of the most beneficial skills to practice on your mountain bike. The core of this skill is good balance and thus it can unlock more potential in everything else that you do on your bike! If you struggle with slow-speed technical sections of trail or uphill switchbacks, this is definitely one you can give some time to!

How often to practice: 2 – 5 mins before and after each ride and you’ll have it nailed in no time!

Mountain Bike Skills: How To Trackstand

Essential Mountain Bike Skill 2: Braking

This one is a no brainer. Your confidence on the bike is directly tied to your ability to brake properly and slow down effectively.

All of us know how to come to a stop on the bike but are you confident to do that from high speed? On loose terrain perhaps? How about coming down from a high speed just before you need to make a tight corner on some technical single track? Add a few things into the equation and thing get complicated pretty quickly. The key is in your body position on the bike and knowing how hard you can really pull the levers before losing traction as well as being confident to do so!

How often to practice: 1 / 2 focussed sessions per week or keep in mind whenever you’re out on the bike!

Mountain Bike Skills: How To Brake Properly

Essential Mountain Bike Skill 3: Cornering

Ah, the art of going ’round bends. Cornering is one of those skills that can never quite be perfected. The balance of traction, body position and inputs into the bike is a complex system to manage! There are of course ways and means of improving your cornering ability and as with most things, it is nailing the basics that unlock higher performance. Let the wizard Chris Nixon break it down into simple steps to help you progress!

How often to practice: 1 / 2 focussed sessions per week or keep the steps in mind whenever you’re out on the bike!

Mountain Bike Skills: Cornering

If you’re looking for more bike skills information, head over here!

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