Tribesports Tries BMX
The Tribesports team are no strangers to cycling - we've taken on loads of Challenges this year from long distance road biking to velodrome cycling, we feel pretty confident in the saddle. This month, we took on an entirely different genre of cycling - BMX.
Our instructors James S and Andy works with Sustrans which is a UK charity all about smarter travel options - enabling people to travel by foot, bike or public transport for more of the journeys we make every day.
The first thing James told us was that riding BMX is a totally different experience to 'normal' cycling - there would be no sitting on that saddle of this bike, so us regular roadies would have to put our legs to the test by standing on the pedals! We also learned the difference the BMX's short stem handlebars made when it came to steerage.
The session started on the flat car park where we could get used to the different riding style required for BMX riding. We were taught the attack position and the best way to stop (as demonstrated beautifully by Joe C in the photo above!). Here's the top advice on stopping your BMX:
- there is only ever a back brake on a BMX
- squeeze the brake firmly but try not to lock your wheel entirely
- move your bodyweight over your back wheel this will keep your BMX under control as you stop and makes it less prone to skidding
As well as learning the basics, we also performed an exercise to practice controlling the BMX when it was moving slowly - James and Andy set up a circle of cones in which all 18 of us cycled around, at a slow pace. The circle got smaller and smaller so we had to ride close together and stop at times without touching the floor - it's a great exercise to learn to track stand!
After that is was off onto the real track to take on the jumps, berms and drops - and we were bricking it!
Check out these 3 guides to help you with your first BMX session:
We had a couple of falls, some slight over-shooting and a whole lot of fun! Here's some photos to wet your BMXing appetite.
Here James demonstrates how to exit a berm at speed - riding up the camber and looking at his exit point means his shoulders will naturally turn the BMX to the right and out of the berm.
If you do not look at your exit point and are looking at the track ahead of you, you run the risk of over shooting!
Not only was it awesome fun - it was a real adrenaline buzz and a great workout.
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