Introduction: Basic Bike Tricks and Skills

About: A Northern Ireland based maker with a propensity to cause trouble and freshly constructed family.

Ok this is my instructable about your basic bike tricks, so far I'm covering:

*Stoppies or Endos
*Other bits and pieces.

This instructable is likely to be added to from time to time, however since I had such a good day today I wanted to get photos and start writing away...

Written as a follow up to My guide to urban cycling

Also this is entered in the Bike month contest, please do vote or rate this 'ible if you like it...

Another Also, it is best advised to wear a helmet for cycling, was being naughty and arrogant by not, even though most of these were performed at low speed, to help the camera, I know I have no excuse at all for the jumping and I would like to make it clear that a helmet is the most important accesory a person can have for their bicycle...

Step 1: The Slide...

Ok we're starting with the most basic showing off you can do, alway fun on loose ground and wet days, also it's the easiest trick to pull off.

Basically the plan is to lock the back wheel up and get the back end to step out by turning like that so.

Going at moderate speed on loose ground or on wet ground, you can do it on any surface but it'll wreck your tyres...

See a turn you'd like to slide around...

Pull the back brake hard, once the wheel locks up you'r e free to turn whenever...

When you're turning allow the end to step out and if you get uncomfortable you simply let go of the brake and go on as normal.

You can either skid to a halt or slide around a turn and let off the back brake and continue on.

If you don't know this one already you can get more comfortable by starting on slippy ground and just going at medium speed, lock the back wheel and make small turning movements to get used to the feeling of it.

Once you get better you can start fishtailing etc. this is where you add turns in the opposite direction to eachother and swing the end about.

Sliding can come in handy in lots of situations, on forest trails when you seriously misjudge a turn sliding around it at high speed can be alot easier than attempting to brake and turn with the front which leads to washing out...

If you go too low and start to fall you can kick the ground with the inside leg to lean up or just drop down and slide to a halt, in most cases I find falling from a badly judged slide far less painful than when you wash out.

Step 2: The Wheelie...

This is an easy trick again, the objective being to lift the front wheel in to the air by pedalling hard and leaning back...

Ok so select a lowish gear, like 2nd and 2nd or 3rd and 1st On a fixie you have no choice and on a bike with a single derailleur I'd say 1st or 2nd.

Now If you want to do a high angle wheelie that wont hold for as long but is easier to do with less falling off pains I'd suggest doing them standing up.

For a wheelie you can hold for longer and travel with sitting down is better.

So start moving slowly and get ready...

When you feel good to go, pedal hard while pulling up on the handlebars and leaning back a bit, if you're standing and go too high simply hop off on to your feet.

So if you're having trouble lifting up, take a gear lower than before and work on timing, naturally if you pedal down hard all of a sudden the front end will lift, you need to combine this with leaning back and lifting the handlebars.

Don't let your front wheel turn sideways more than a few degrees, otherwise when you land you'll be bucked off the bike.

Step 3: The Stoppie or Endo.

This trick is about getting the back wheel off the ground by using your weight and the front brake, it's a little scarier than doing a wheelie but in reality much easier...

For this one you're best learning at lower speed and building up the big angles.

So coming along at a speed you're comfortable at, standing preferably to avoid the seat invading you when you come back down.

Pull the front brake in and slowly pull harder while leaning forward a bit, once slow enough to try tipping up lock the wheel and lean in a bit, no too much or you'll fall off the bike before it tips over anyway.

At any point let go of the brake or lean back to stop tipping forward.

If you go too far forward jump off the pedals and let go of the brake, let your feet land nearer the front wheel, if you forget to let go of the brake the back end will attempt to cut your leg off, not particularly painful but not pleasant.

So coming up start braking and when you're happy yank the brake and lean in, after a certain point where you feel like you're going face first, straighten your body a bit and that will slow you faceward progress...

just build up the speeds you do it at until you get it the way you like.

Once you get more skilled you can start turning around during endos I'm quite close to straight in this photo though urges are hard to resist...

Step 4: The Bunnyhop.

This one is a culmination of the leaning and lifting you learn from doing wheelies, also some people know it as a 'horse hop'.

In this the objective is to jump both wheels off the ground.

This is done by lifting the front of the bike up like a wheelie and then lifting the back to level.

So coming at any speed you're happy with.

Take a curb or something, to get used to the movements jumping off or over something is easier.

When you come to the obstacle lift the front wheel up.

***A far better explanation from ledzeppie, who also like his bikes...

push your bars forward... i lean back like **** and once my front wheel is high enough I throw my body up and push forward on my handlebars and that will level my bike out... i suggest learning these on speed bumps.

Make sure you have still got 'landing room' for your giblets, this applies to girlies aswell, that bike seat hurts either way.

once you master this it becomes a natural thing and is great for hopping curbs at speed instead of worrying about blowing the rear tyre...

I have to apologize for the bad photos in this step, try as we might we couldn't get a good mid-bunnyhop photo, I'll get the SLR and a helper and get it done soon. The first one shows me starting to take off, the second is of the 'lift' portion of the trick.

Step 5: Jumping.

So jumping, this involves most of the elements of a bunnyhop but without the work of removing yourself from the ground...

So coming up to your jump in question, speed is dependant completely on how high and far you'd like to go, start with ramp jumps or even sloped curbs, just to get used to the ideas involved, rather than land in a ditch...

So coming up to your jump at a speed you're comfortable with.

As you come off your jump, lift your legs in a bit and bring the bike to lean backward a bit, this give you a more stable position for both landing and 'flying'

When landing keep your legs bent, as you come in make sure the front wheel is straight.

Once you've landed on hard ground again you'll usually realise that jumping is not difficult as it's quite a natural maneuvre...

In the picture I'm actually shifting gears as I jump, the second one shows more landing...

Step 6: Other Bits and Pieces...

These aren't hard, to start with practice by going very slow and keeping your balance until you can do it with minimal turning of the handlebars. Find a slight slope, now the idea here is not to try and keep super still but to use your back brake and pedals to rock back and forth with the handlebars turned slightly to keep your balance, handy for lots of things, one of which is muddy places, means you don't need to keep slipping on your pedals later on...

I like to dismount both with a little grace and in a way that involves minimum effort, my favourite is definitely coming along and swinging one leg over the bike so I'm standing on one pedal and my other leg is tucked in behind me, start with both hands on the handlebars, you need to lean in to keep your balance, eventually you can get this by leaning over the bike with one hand and one foot, which is cool for saluting people and whatnot.

Future additions:

Well anything you'd like to see in here please do comment me or PM with requests, I'm sure there are tricks I'd know and others I'd like to learn.

Coming soon, ledzeppie's 'ible on more advanced tricks on you bike.

Another coming soon will be my more advanced 'ible, with some help from prometheus...

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