Friday, July 11, 2014
[Cycling Tips] Develop Your Riding Technique With 15 Easy Tips
1. To avoid muscle soreness and fatigue, don't hunch your shoulders. Tilt your head every few minutes to stave off tight neck muscles. Better yet: stop to admire the scenery
2. If you don't have a chance to slow for an obstacle such as railroad tracks or a pothole, quickly pull upward on the handlebar to lift your front wheel. You may still damage the rear wheel, or it might suffer a pinch flat, but you'll prevent an impact on the front that could cause a crash.
3. Relax your grip. On smooth, traffic-free pavement, practice draping your hands over the handlebar. This not only will help alleviate muscle tension, but also will reduce the amount of road vibration transmitted to your body.
4. Periodically change hand position. Grasp the drops for descents or high-speed riding and the brake lever hoods for relaxed cruising. On long climbs, hold the top of the bar to sit upright and open your chest for easier breathing. When standing, grasp the hoods lightly and gently rock the bike from side to side in sync with your pedal strokes. But always keep each thumb and a finger closed around the hood or bar to prevent yourself from losing control if you hit an unexpected bump.
5. As your effort becomes harder, increase the force of your breaths rather than the frequency.
7. On descents, your bike is much more stable when you're pedaling than when you're coasting.
8. Always ride with your elbows bent and your arms and shoulders relaxed. This prevents fatigue caused by muscle tension. It also allows your arms to absorb shock instead of transmitting it to your body.
9. When riding one-handed for any reason, grip the bar on top, next to the stem. If your hand is farther out - such as on the brake-lever hood - the bike is more likely to veer dangerously should the front wheel hit a rock, bump, or pothole
10. Get more life from your tires by switching them from one wheel to another. The rear wears more than twice as fast as the front, so swapping every 500 miles or so significantly extends their longevity.
11. Break up long rides with a 15-second sprint every 30 minutes or so- adding variety to a monotonous pace is better training, relieves saddle pressure, and stretches and relaxes your body.
12. After you grab your water bottle, don't tilt your head to drink. Tilt the bottle and squeeze the water in. You'll have more control.
13. The key to smooth, reliable, non-damaging gear changes when you're pushing hard is to ease your pedal pressure at the instant you move the shift lever. You need to lighten the load on the chain for about one revolution so it won't balk, crunch, or possibly break. Then hit the power again.
Read Our Post About Pedaling Efficiency
14. For optimal handling with 20 pounds or more of cargo, put approximately 60 percent of the weight in the rear panniers or on a rack, 35 percent on the front rack or panniers, and 5 percent in a handlebar bag.
15. Two easy and most overlooked ways to improve your bike's performance: Inflate the tires before every ride, and keep the chain lubed.
Finish Line Bikes
8850 Stockdale Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311