Reddit Reddit reviews Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition

We found 35 Reddit comments about Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

Extreme Sports
Sports & Outdoors
Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition
Human Kinetics
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35 Reddit comments about Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition:

u/hugeyakmen · 8 pointsr/MTB

My two favorite resources to learn better technique and habits that you can study while off the bike:

There is a really good skills video by Fabien Barel that is geared towards all mountain riding but really applies to any and all riding. Not sure the best place to download a new copy, I believe it was originally on a DVD that came with a magazine

The book "Mastering Mountain Biking Skills" by Brians Lopes and Lee McCormack.

A skills clinic can be expensive esp if you don't leave too close to a good one, but that is a quick way to learn a lot and get personalized coaching. It's probably on every mountain biker's wishlist

u/teholbugg · 7 pointsr/MTB

woah woah calm down. calmmmmmm.....

okay, first, and i'm sure you predicted that someone would say this, but


now, there are basic (some are cheap) upgrades everyone should do on their bike - the contact points - where your body meets the bike

  • pedal like wellago MG-1 or nukeproof proton ($30-70)

  • grips like ODI yeti / rogue ($30)

  • saddle (more expensive, get your sit bones measured at a shop, get the right saddle for you) ~$100

  • grippy shoes like five tens ~$100

  • full finger gloves $30

  • most importantly, upgrade the rider

    After that, don't just buy things to buy things. What do you want to do with your bike? what annoys you about it? fix those things, but remember that at a certain level of expense, it just makes more sense to save that money toward a new bike
u/RaginCajun1 · 6 pointsr/MTB

that book is an incredible resource. if you dont want to drop the cash, google 'mountain bike attack position', then work on bike/body separation, then look up GMBN on youtube, they have tons of video tutorials. droppers are useful but not necesarry. your seat does need to be low enough to let you bounce on your legs a bit

u/[deleted] · 6 pointsr/MTB

RobbyKing kept recommending a book Mastering Mountain bike skills, by Brian Lopes. Finally after sheer curiosity I picked it up. It's actually a really great book that deals with these issues. I would highly recommend that you check it out. Even decent rider's will learn a few things that they didn't realized about their riding style.

u/MuscleMilkMike · 5 pointsr/MTB

Start off by reading this book:

u/WildW1thin · 5 pointsr/MTB

Attack Position

When I first started riding, my friends kept giving that same tidbit about get your weight back as far as possible. No matter what. Drop? Weight back. Steep descent? Weight back. Rock garden? Weight back. I think it's one of those good intention mantras for mountain biking. But I prefer showing someone the proper attack position along with "heavy feet, light hands."

I picked up this book and quickly became one of the better riders in my group. A couple of them might climb faster than me, but they all let me go first on the descents. Highly recommend it.

u/Casper29 · 5 pointsr/MTB

Also, since you are new to dirt - I recommend reading this.

Hopefully it will keep you from all the stupid mistakes I made. I am still not a very good rider, but I am better than where I started at due to that book.

I am incredibly jealous that you live so close to work. I live 35 miles away from my office and I would love to ride to work every day.

u/robbyking · 4 pointsr/MTB

There's a really good section on climbing in that stupid book I keep recommending.

Your height to weight ratio is fine, so don't worry about that. If you're a flabby 98, just keep riding and your body will get to where it needs to be. Don't worry about.

As for the climb, a couple things to remember are:

  • Keep your weight over your bottom bracket
  • If your rear wheel loses traction, try sitting down; the extra weight focused on your back wheel will keep it from spinning out.
  • Pedal like a hummingbird: for really steep climbs, stay seated, shift to a low gear, lean forward (weight over the bottom bracket), and pedal with a fast, consistent cadence.
  • Don't stop until you fall. I have friends who struggled with steep sections of trails for months, only to make them the first time I rode behind them and kept on them to not give up until they fell over.

    As for SPD (clipless) pedals, I love them, but it's mostly rider preference. Professional XC racers use them, and professional downhill racers don't, so you can use that as your guide. For me (XC racing with some freeride), I love riding clipless; you never have to worry about your foot position (which is great for climbs and rooty/rocky downhill sections), so all of your pedaling energy is focused where it should be.

    Of course, if you're a DH or DJ rider, clipping in will probably result in a broken collar bone. It really depends on how you ride.

    One quick note on terminology: "Clips" are the basket things you put your foot into. (It's short for "toe clip.") The pedals that attach to your specially made shoes don't have the basket (clip), so they're called "clipless," even though you clip into them. (So yes, you clip in to clipless pedals.) It's confusing if you don't know the history behind the terms, but pretty easy to remember once you do.

    Good luck!
u/jmblur · 4 pointsr/MTB

Buy Lee McCormack/Brian Lopes' "Mastering Mountain Bike Skills".

Seriously. It's a GREAT book. Get it. Read it. Ride it.

u/The_Spaghettio_Kid · 4 pointsr/MTB

If you think so highly about this book, you really need to link to where the authors can get paid for their work. Amazon

u/ubetterbelieveit · 3 pointsr/MTB

It's just a moto-turn. Kinda like this:

Basically shifting your weight forward and low, keeping weight on your front wheel so it tracks while the back does what it wants. They talk about it in Mastering Mountain Bike Skills:

u/manuelacon · 3 pointsr/MTB

Bite the bullet and get mastering mtb skills

u/Lelldorianx · 3 pointsr/MTB

At the expense of feeling your pain over-and-over, I watched that sequence a few times to look for what you did wrong. I can't really see the jump from the quality/angle, but in terms of posture, your elbows looked pretty stiff as you went into that launch. As a result of this, I think you ended up distributing too much of your weight forward (putting weight on the bars, it looks like), which caused your front wheel to hit the ground at a non-preferential angle.

I'd suggest starting small: Find roots, moguls, dips, hell, even curbs. Manhole covers can also make a good small starting spot, but roots tend to be the best -- generally things that are only a few inches high.

Get yourself used to riding up to them and popping over them. Once that's comfortable, start learning how to launch off of them. Don't pull too hard on your bars, it should come fairly naturally once you're used to it -- you'll sort of loosen up your elbows, position yourself in 'attack position,' then naturally glide over the roots and get a few inches of air. It should feel reaaally natural once you're used to it, which is why I'm having a hard time explaining proper positioning. I'm sure someone can jump in with more technical advice.

As for how fast to go... that's a call that you'll have to make when there. It should sort of feel right when you're going a good speed - I can't really tell what the configuration of that huck is from the angle, though.

I learned everything I know from getting hurt ... a lot, but someone bought me this book last year and it taught me a lot. It's nothing revolutionary, but the book is loaded with timelapse photos that show exactly how a rider is positioned during corners, drops, hucks, jumps, etc. and should help you get started! Hope that helps!

Where was this, by the way?

Edit: I asked about 'how to fall' in this subreddit a while back. I found this video to be helpful, albeit tougher to do in a real scenario.

u/nwvtskiboy · 3 pointsr/MTB

Just think, 20 years ago people were riding harsher trails on rigid 26'ers. Simply run what ya brung. As for jumps and drops, find smaller easy ones and do them over and over and over until you hate them then do them some more. Get super confident on the small stuff so you can get familiar with how your bike (and your self!) handles jumps and landings. Gradually work up to bigger air and harder hits. Your bike can handle a lot more abuse than you might expect, so long as you don't case it.

Also, consider reading this:
Mastering Mountain Bike Skills

u/sns1294 · 3 pointsr/MTB

You might be leaning forward and putting more weight on the front than the back. It's one of those things that your brain tells you to do, but is opposite of what you need to do. You want to keep yourself centered over the cranks and your weight on the pedals.

It sometimes helps you get out of the saddle in corners, put most of your weight on the outside pedal with it at the 6 o'clock position, and lean the bike while keeping yourself vertical.

Going downhill you want to keep most of your weight centered over both pedals only using the handlebars and seat as control points. Depending on the steepness of the trail your butt might be just over the back of the seat or completely behind it.

This book by Lee McCormack and Brian Lopes is a good read and they do a good job explaining the techniques. The point they constantly talk about is heavy feet, light hands.

u/bspill1 · 3 pointsr/MTB

I'm sure you can get great advice here and there is always costly clinics. But I would definitely check out this book. Really well written, for anybody to understand.

u/fedaykin3dfx · 3 pointsr/MTB

I have a 2008 Gary Fisher Marlin Disc, which is similar to your bike in a number of ways, though most of your components are higher-end. Though I got the bike 6 or 7 years ago, I didn't really start riding much until recently. So I'm still a noob, but I'll let you know the handful of changes I've made, and why, in case it helps. I do XC riding in the PNW for what it's worth.

Pedals - the platforms that came with my bike were not great. Trek's specs for both bikes list "alloy pedals" so I assume they're the same. I recently switched to clipless pedals (SPD) and it made a huge difference for me since I'm not sliding all over the place. Better platforms and good shoes are a good choice too.

Tires - Trek's site says we have the same tires, assuming you haven't changed them. I'm still rocking the original tires since they do the job, but they don't get good traction in wet and muddy conditions. Others online say similar things ( So picking up a set of new tires that match your riding style and trail conditions may be good. I will probably do this when mine wear out (soon).

Drivetrain - All I've done is dump my largest chainring, since I never use it, and put a bash guard in its place to protect my legs and help roll over logs and such more easily.

edit: you know what, I may have misinterpreted your question. If you're looking more for how to improve your skills I found this to be very helpful: The tips in the threads toomuchdolphin linked are great resources as well.

u/theduckpants · 2 pointsr/MTB

Light hands, heavy feet. Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition (not sure why the sidebar has the original 2005 edition linked..) has a great section on this.

Otherwise google attack position.

As for the back pain, I get lower back issues a bit when i'm doing a big ride. I find focusing on my posture when I'm not riding can make a big difference. Maybe see a physio?

u/studentjones · 2 pointsr/MTB

Here are a few good tutorial vids to shape up your technique:

How to climb

Techniques for drops

A lesson on riding downhill

And the always popular book, Mastering Mountain Bike Skills. I don't have this book personally, but I really want to get it. I can attest to its greatness because there was a sample on google book previews recently that featured 15 pages or so. Great stuff.

u/arcticrobot · 2 pointsr/MTB

Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by x4 times MTB world champion Brian Lopes. After 5 years of single track riding I've decided to polish my skills and what a good book it has been so far! Available as a digital download Kindle edition.

u/hirschmj · 2 pointsr/MTB

Find a group of guys faster than you and ride with them. Lose weight if you want. Look for group rides on MTBR. Don't keep riding with them if they're jerks about you not being as fast. DO keep riding with them if they wait patiently at trail intersections and offer encouragement. Get a big fat light and ride at night. Ride on the weekends. Ride to work. Ride for fun.

Speaking from experience, all of those things helped my stamina. Next weekend I'm riding with a big group of MTBers, 21 miles, 3500 feet of climbing, starting and ending at 6000 feet elevation. I did it last year too, finished in 5 hours after 4 months of MTBing. This year I hope to do it in 4 hours.

Take a skills class in your area. Buy a skills book. Learn the basics. Practice them. Don't assume mountain biking will just come to you, there's a lot to it that's not intuitive.

My favorite trick of the trade - on downhills or techie sections get your butt off the seat. Bend your elbows at 90 degrees and point your elbows out to your sides. Get your torso low. Shift your weight back until you feel your body balanced perfectly on the cranks, belly button over your feet, should be no weight on your hands or wrists. GET YOUR TORSO LOWER. Loosen up, shake your arms a bit, bend your legs at the knees. Keep your weight at that point where there's no weight on your hands. Going down? move your weight back a bit. Going up? Move your weight forward. Braking? Move your weight back again, keep that balance. Keep your arms loose. Now, when there's a drop (12-18 inches), push the front end down into the drop. Since your arms are bent, your torso doesn't get yanked down with the bike. Your arms move the bike down, and your head stays flowing smoothly along its path. Your bike may have 3, 4, 6, 8" of suspension? Your arms have 18" of suspension. Use them.

Rock? Suck that front end up, pick up that front wheel so you're not just smashing into it, move the wheel over it. Big stairstep waterbar thing? Throw your torso up and back, use that momentum to pick up the front wheel and place it on top of the stairstep. QUICK throw your torso forward! Suck your legs up so your rear wheel doesn't smash into the waterbar and rob you of your precious momentum you've worked so hard to collect.

Move your body and your bike around the trail, don't let the trail work you, it'll steal your precious momentum and buck your head around. Stay loose, stay low, keep those arms bent and unweighted.

Look farther down the trail. FARTHER THAN THAT! The higher you keep your eyes the more time you have to react to the trail and process the best route.

On climbs? Just do them a lot. All this skills stuff goes out the window when you're exhausted.

not a shill for Lee, I just read his book and took his class and got a lot from the experience

u/ChristophColombo · 2 pointsr/MTB

There are a couple different levels to this question.

  1. Do you need a new bike, or is it just your technique holding you back? If your bike is similar to this one, you should be ok. Just work on your technique - GMBN on youtube is a good place to start, as well as this book. If it's more like this one, then you're on the right track looking for something new for off-road riding.

  2. Should you get a fat bike? Personally, I'm not a huge fan. They're on the heavy side, the tires act as undamped suspension (meaning that you bounce a lot), they accelerate very slowly, and they require constant effort to keep moving (i.e. they don't coast well at all). However, I ride with a few guys that love them. The main benefit is traction. Because you have so much tire in contact with the ground and the tire is run at such a low pressure (often under 10 psi), you can ride up stuff that an ordinary 2.0-2.4" tire would slip out on. You can also ride on surfaces like sand and snow that are unrideable on skinnier tires - some of my fatbiking friends have ridden between towns by following the river and staying on the sandbars. In general, they seem to be popular among riders who are into mountain biking for the adventure aspect rather than the go-fast aspect. If that sounds like you, then a fat bike might be just what you need.

  3. Should you get a mid-fat/plus bike? I don't have a ton of experience with them personally, but the few rides that I've had have been positive. They offer more traction than a standard tire without the weight penalty and less of the rolling resistance penalty of a fat bike tire. Currently, most plus tires are a little on the thin side, which makes them more prone to sidewall tears and pinch flats than a standard tire, especially when riding in very sharp rocks, and they can feel a bit vague under heavy cornering load (mostly an issue for very fast/aggressive riders), but I think they strike a nice balance for a beginner rider between rideability and capability.

    I would lean away from getting a full suspension given your budget, and would STRONGLY recommend riding several different options before buying. If your shop doesn't offer trail demos/rentals, look for factory demo tours from Trek, Specialized, Giant, etc. They're usually going around the US this time of year offering free bike demos at trails all over the country. You may not get to ride the exact bike you're looking at, but it should give you at least an idea of what to expect.
u/Koofoodoo · 2 pointsr/MTB

Hello there, I'm relatively new as well but I can hopefully help! Firstly, on the sidebar is a very helpful book, Mastering Mountain Bike Skills This is the second edition, the first one is cheaper, I'm not sure how much has changed but it has a ton of helpful things, such as a few answers to your questions. They recommend deadlifts as a great exercise to build strength, I can imagine that would help a lot. Conditioning is also a big part of it, long rides focusing on pedal stroke and perfecting form to make sure there is no wasted effort.

As far as a trail bike, depends on how rough the trails are. I'm currently riding 2014 Giant Talon 4 and it's holding up fine on easy-moderate trails without too many large bumps or big rocks, I've done some pretty rough accidental off-roads and nothing has broken yet, so I'd say for your price range a hardtail would be the way to go, though for rougher trail a full suspension bike is recommended, though good ones of those start around $1600-$2000 range.

Also for what it's worth, I'm 220 pounds and ride with a 8-10ish pound backpack so I imagine you'd be a lot easier on the bike in that regard

u/thissit · 2 pointsr/MTB
u/CloggyDutch · 1 pointr/MTB

Here's my list:

First Aid Kit - just handy:

Some sort of sunglasses / windglasses:

Bike maintenance book:

Mastering mountain bike skills book:

Arse saver pants:

Cheap lights:

Tool kit:



Inner tubes,
Spare chain,
Chain tool,
Water bottle and cage,
Decent pedals (AND shoes)(,
Strava App,
Decent bag, maybe a camelback one or one with spine protection?

And lastly: A willingness to get muddy regularly. With that in mind, keep your bike clean! No pressure washing, just a hose and a brush, and some stuff. I got this kit free with my LBS membership:

That's it. All you really need is your bike!

u/swaits · 1 pointr/bicycling

I highly recommend Mastering Mountain Bike Skills (2e) by Lopes. This book will make you a better, faster, safer, more confident mountain biker.

u/moneybags0 · 1 pointr/MTB

As far as position goes, you typically want to go "long and low" or "short and high." You can change your stem out for something longer/shorter and more/less rise, or you can swap out bars for something wider/narrower or more/less rise.

I'm pulling the following numbers and information from this book: If you're more XC and like to climb, you may want to go long (90-120mm) and low (0-10 degrees rise), but if you're more into descending and jumping, short (40-70mm) and high (10-15 degrees) may be better for you.

In addition to the stem, you can get a bar with rise if you'd like. For "long and low" XC, flat or 1" rise is good. For "short and high," 1.5" to 2.5" is better.

As far as bar width goes, it really depends on your build. If you have wide shoulders, you'll probably need wider bars. Basically, it should feel comfortable.

Since you say your frame is small, you'll probably need to go to the edges of the ranges above (e.g. if you like "long and low," you might try a 120mm stem rather than 90mm). I don't know enough to give you specifics for your bike, but it does sound a little small for you. Your LBS probably has hundreds of different stems in a drawer and could fit you pretty well.

u/nico_hig · 1 pointr/MTB

Just ordered my brand new Rocky Mountain Altitude 730. Il should have it in the next week. Thanks everyone for your help.

And I ordered Mastering Mountain Bike Skills to improve my technique and Magellan Echo Fit to see my progress via Runkeeper.

I'm ready for this summer!

u/JShultz89 · 1 pointr/MTB

Luckily indeed. This is the first weekend it's getting about 50F. The ground has been frozen up until now. You'll definitely have a lot of time to improve. You'll find yourself getting better and better the more you ride. Also, if you want to look for more material on riding techniques I would check out:

u/monkeywithafootball · 1 pointr/MTB

Sucks to hear about your broken arm. I go crazy when I'm hurt and can't get out to do things. You've definitely got the heart and drive to progress on a bike. Best advice I can give you is:

1- don't give up! Mountain bikes really are fun a great way to exercise once you get a little fitness and skill built up.

2- You just jumped right into, maybe not the deep end, but at least the end of the mtb pool where your feet can't touch. Riding off even small drop takes practice and technical skills take a while to learn. While you're recovering check out Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Brian Lopes and Lee McCormack. By far the best break down of how to learn technical bike skills out there.

3- Even the best of the best still crash. It's a good idea to work on learning to "tuck and roll grandma!". I think I'd have way more broken bones than I do now if I hadn't learned how to fall. I took some entry level judo classes when I was young that taught me, but there's plenty of info online on how to break your fall properly. In the words of Wade Simmons:
>I’ve always said this, you’ve gotta be a better crasher to be a better rider.

u/LocalAmazonBot · -2 pointsr/MTB

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