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Mudhorse
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I'm not qualified to give advice on jumps as my skills here are rudimentary and erratic*, just pitching in to say nice bit of carpentry there, Mr Pig.

Seth Bikehack's friend Phil Kmetz has a very good tutorial on jumps, with some nice slo-mo replays, diagrams, and a stuffed panda: How to Jump a mountain bike beginner tutorial
He also built a mini booter jump (with backstraps for the lugging around), although he did eventually break the thing.

* Very few jumpable features on my local trails, though I try and get as much fun as I can out of random mounds of earth etc. Plenty of tree roots though, so at least I can get in lots of little bump-jumps on a ride.
 

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I'm not amazing at jumping or anything, but you probably want to have a balanced weight distribution. Putting your weight back will just load up your rear shock and lead to a nose case.

Nice ramp though. Are you putting it above a slope or just hucking it to flat?
I second this. Every time I've hurt myself it's because I'm too far back and I get bucked forward by the rear shock. If you don't overthink it, stay balanced on the middle and handle it like you are popping off a drop or a sidewalk even, you would be surprised how much easier it is to get air.


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always licking the glass
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I second this. Every time I've hurt myself it's because I'm too far back and I get bucked forward by the rear shock. If you don't overthink it, stay balanced on the middle and handle it like you are popping off a drop or a sidewalk even, you would be surprised how much easier it is to get air.


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So much this. Work on small jumps and work your way up.

You don't need a DJ to learn how to jump but understand how not to land on the rear wheel. Keep yourself centered even over the landing. It's scary but you'll get comfortable with it.

Here is me midjump, perfectly centered over the bike. This took months of work for me to get this way, and I'm working my way up.

And jumps are frustrating. They are, but keep at it. I'm still working the small jump and slopestyle lines at Valmont.

You got this.

 

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So much this. Work on small jumps and work your way up.

You don't need a DJ to learn how to jump but understand how not to land on the rear wheel. Keep yourself centered even over the landing. It's scary but you'll get comfortable with it.

Here is me midjump, perfectly centered over the bike. This took months of work for me to get this way, and I'm working my way up.

And jumps are frustrating. They are, but keep at it. I'm still working the small jump and slopestyle lines at Valmont.

You got this.

One cool exercise that helped me dramatically (which was taught to me at a DH camp) is to find a small branch and compress by evenly pressing the bike down right at the beginning of it; then just hop up. Once you are up, work on pressing the bars down and getting the front wheel down.

You will be surprised by a) how much air you can get from a little branch b) when you pop up, and keep what seems like your weight balanced, the front will naturally get lighter and the bike will rotate around you and c) when you get used to then controlling the front, it will make you more comfortable getting straight if you jumped wrong cause it's actually pretty easy to get the front wheel down even on a little hop. I never knew this till I tried.

This exercise helped me tremendously.


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I was talking about weight back on the approach, basically like this guy at this point of the jump-

Picture 1.png

If you watch the jump (start @ 1:50- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxvYN4pfjFQ ) you'll see that his weight shift dynamics change a half dozen times in less than 1/2 second. Yeah he's launching into a truck but he makes that same brief move on a lot of the other jumps he does in the vid.

At any rate a rear weighted approach seemed to work really good for me on this little ramp, very stable and pretty controlled for this rookie.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
I think a lot depends on the kind of ramp/jump. I go over 'jumps' like the one in this picture all the time and you don't have to lean back. You pretty much just hit them and the bike follows a natural ark over the top. Those are the easiest jumps to do, for me anyway.

The kicker ramp is different. The way you come off it is different and you are landing on flat ground. Rolling forward is fine when you're landing on a downward slope like that but going off the kicker I need my weight back so that the bike lands flat.

I don't think there's a right or wrong here. You're just moving your weight to get the bike at the angle you want.
 

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I need my weight back so that the bike lands flat.
You're plenty strong that you don't need to use your entire body weight to adjust the angle of the bike in the air. Stay more centered and use finesse rather than mass and brute forece. You're trying to drive a finish nail with a sledgehammer. ;)
 

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Also, for a large bike, a small ramp is going to be tougher to learn on IME.
Though that thing looks pretty sweet, it seems barely big enough to get both wheels on at the same time. It's going to act more like a speed bump than a launch ramp, particularly without a landing.
 

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I think if you hit that fast enough, you could get some serious distance.


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Although it is kind of small (shorter than one bike length), so if he went too fast for that size jump it might just kick the rear of the bike up and over, dumping Mr. Pig on his head.
 

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Although it is kind of small (shorter than one bike length), so if he went too fast for that size jump it might just kick the rear of the bike up and over, dumping Mr. Pig on his head.
I assumed it was close to a bike length. I guess you need to make sure you compress and pop at the perfect time. Probably not the best jump to learn.


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I assumed it was close to a bike length. I guess you need to make sure you compress and pop at the perfect time. Probably not the best jump to learn.


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Maybe it's a bike length. Anyway, my point was that if a jump is shorter than the bike then it can give a weird kick.
 

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Something else that's helped me learn to jump my bike (not that I'm Brandon Semenuk or anything), has been jumping on skis. You can preload and pop up similarly but when you eat it on snow you usually just slide out without too much lasting damage. You can go much bigger on skis before it gets as scary.
 

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It's not quite a bike length but 2 wheels do fit on it. Everyone seems to be making this thing out to be a death trap but if a hack like myself can handle it it can't be that bad. Quite fun actually.
 

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It's not quite a bike length but 2 wheels do fit on it. Everyone seems to be making this thing out to be a death trap but if a hack like myself can handle it it can't be that bad. Quite fun actually.
What are you talking about? I thought we were talking about Mr. Pig's jumping.
 

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Right now I'm just doing what works. If I don't get off the back of the bike it nose-dives. When I take off the seat is coming up to my chest, and that's with it right down.
Try pushing the handlebars forward (not up or down - straight ahead) as your front wheel comes off the lip rather than getting your weight back behind the bike. The push prevents the nosedive without you having to get way back behind the bike, thereby allowing you to be a bit more centered and in control in the air.

p.s. i suck at jumps so this is probably bad advice
 
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