5 Steps to get Started with Mountain Biking Right Now!

Can anyone start with the sport of mountain biking? Yes! If you can ride a bicycle, you can also learn mountain biking. If you wanted to start running, but have given up due to the strain it puts on the ligaments and muscles, biking is perfect for you. Mountain biking is much gentler on the body, the burden on your body is way less and it is more convenient for recreation.

Getting the right Mountain bike

In general, you should make sure that the bike fits you – and that does not mean the paint and varnish look good. You should feel comfortable on the bike. Consult your local dealer or ask us. We will help you not only in the selection of the appropriate material and the frame size, but also in determining the correct seating position.

$500 is the lower limit for a quality MTB. For $1000 you can get a very good bike. The weight of a fully equipped bike is then between about 25 to 26 lbs. By comparison, the bike that I ride currently cost me around $3000.

A distinction is made between hardtail (front suspension only) and full-suspension (front and rear suspension). Full-suspension is heavier but is also more comfortable.

Pay attention to good tires and correct pressure

Mountain biking is the robust version of pedaling. The tires are at least 50 millimeters wide. An important criterion to have fun in the terrain, is the tire air pressure. Mountain bikes are driven with a substantially lower air pressure than, say, road bikes on the road. Low pressure means more grip and more comfort.

Depending on the your weight, I recommend recreational athletes to inflate the tire to about 2 bar. Rule of thumb is – as little air pressure as possible, as much as necessary. This enhances driving pleasure and ride comfort.

Get your hands on the right Clothing

Just like the bike, you need to have the bike clothes that fit right. Clothing plays an important role in the overall experience. So invest a little more money and get quality clothing. Functional clothing is more expensive, but also works great.

The most important tool is the shorts. It represents the contact surface with the saddle. The so-called seat leather in step (which is no longer made of leather nowadays) must fit well. Be careful: There are differences between women’s and men’s trousers. I recommend pants with straps from experience because they do not slip so easily.

Also important is an undershirt that makes the sweat from the skin disappear quickly. When you buy a jersey be sure that several jersey pockets exist. Also look for vests with Wind stopper material on the front to protect from the air stream when going downhill.

MTB Essentials

  • Helmet (mandatory):

The helmet is an absolute prerequisite for your safety in the bike park. We strongly recommend the full-face helmet, as it easily ensures the best protection in case of falls. No question: I always wear a helmet, both in competition and in training. You should do it too!

It is important to make sure that the helmet is not only well ventilated, but your head shape adjusts optimally. Not every head is equal in shape. Just try several models and compare them. Also make sure that the helmet ensures good ventilation, and that it has an official seal of approval. If in doubt, ask us. You can get a good helmet for $50 or less. 

  • Visor:

Equally important is a visor that protects your whole field of vision.

  • Elbow and knee pads:

They protect you from cuts and scratches and also serve as impact protection at the places that are particularly exposed, namely elbow and knee.

  • Chest protection:

Not compulsory but highly recommended as additional protection for the back and upper body.

  • Shoes with good soles:

For downhill or free ride could take a simple pair of sneakers, but we always recommend shoes with a thicker, firmer sole to reduce the load while driving.

  • Gloves:

They give you more grip on the brakes and protect when falling at the same time at the same time from any cuts. In a fall, you land usually first on the hands, so you should ensure appropriate coverage.

Flats or Clipless pedals?

We will advise you to go for clipless pedals. The fact that the shoe is “clicked” by a plate on the sole of the pedals, there is a better connection between the foot and bicycle. You are much safer on the pedals and do not slip off the pedal due to moisture.

The disadvantage, however, for beginners is obvious: the release from the pedal is an unusual movement. Many newcomers have the fear of falling down fast enough. Practice it!

Become a Biking expert

You learn by mountain biking regularly. If you are biking in an area regularly, you will quickly benefit from your experience. Try, for example, once initially at low speed on the flat, how it feels when you block the rear tires by brakes and the rear wheel slips on loose ground. Drive extra slow once over a narrow line, and check your balance.

Using these little tricks you can achieve perfection. From experience I can say that this process is accelerated significantly if you take part in a skills training.

Stay careful in forests. It always depends on where you are with your bike. This means that bike only in ways that are in at least two meters wide in the forest. 

Robert Flaherty
 

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