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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new to downhill, my bike is more or less capable of moderate drops and whatnot (6/7 at 31.5 pounds).

I would like to give it a shot, but I know little of the technique involved.

I guess my first question is about riding behind the saddle. This is done on steep sections to avoid endo, right?

When I ride behind the saddle (at least on flat ground), my junk seems dangerously close to the saddle. It's kind of worrying.

Anyways, any tips for beginners would be appreciated, along with an explanation to riding behind the saddle.

I won't be doing any drops for a while, just starting out with descents that you don't see in your average XC ride.
 

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mkiv808 said:
I'm new to downhill, my bike is more or less capable of moderate drops and whatnot (6/7 at 31.5 pounds).

I would like to give it a shot, but I know little of the technique involved.

I guess my first question is about riding behind the saddle. This is done on steep sections to avoid endo, right? The more you are behind your saddle the more you can use your front brake without going over te bars.When I ride behind the saddle (at least on flat ground), my junk seems dangerously close to the saddle. It's kind of worrying. No worries.
Anyways, any tips for beginners would be appreciated, along with an explanation to riding behind the saddle. Look where you want to go and not where you want to fall. Have confidence.I won't be doing any drops for a while, just starting out with descents that you don't see in your average XC ride.
The more you use your brakes the more wobbly or off balance you become.

Downhill Mike
www.whiteface.com
 

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I railed it like Kong
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This is done on steep sections to avoid endo, right? Yes - it just puts you back in balance. Newbs seem to get as far behind the saddle as humanly possible because they are not used to the steep decline and they are going slower. As you get more comfortable you'll find a more nuetral balance point that will give you the most control.

When I ride behind the saddle (at least on flat ground), my junk seems dangerously close to the saddle. It's kind of worrying. Lower your saddle for any long sections of downhill. Or get a gravity dropper post and you can adjust seat height on the fly. Other than that don't worry too much.

Basic Tips- Speed is your friend for the most part. I've got a brother that can't get over going faster than a crawl on descents and he falls 80% of the time. He'll hit something small and his front wheel stops - down he goes.

Stay loose and let the bike do the work. You just look where you want to go and don't think too much. Stay off the brakes in sketchy spots and once it smooths out a bit scrub your speed then.

I hope this helps
 

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Glad to Be Alive
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breath....so you don't tighten up

ride w/guys better then you
 

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aka Jesse Palmer
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Get a copy of Brian Lopes and Lee McCormack's book Mastering Mountain Bike Skills Its pretty good, and will basically show you just about everything you will ever need to know when riding a bike. One of my favorite tips was: " 'I'm going really fast right now' is not a valid reason to use your brakes" :D
 

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Seriously, speed is your friend. This is true on an XC bike, but it is amplified many many times on a FR/DH bike. This translates into a counterintutive pattern of braking - use them when it is smooth, before or after the bumps start. Most people want to hit the brakes when the going gets rough, but that just makes things much more difficult. With 6"-7" of travel, your bike can soak up tons more than you think it can.

Start small and build up to the bigger stuff when it comes to stunts and drops. Speed often helps on drops, too. Find you balance and just send it! (or hesitate and die, your choice)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Some good tips guys, thanks.

So when you ride behind the saddle, is it ok to be positioned behind it, but so that your groin area is still above it?
 

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Buy the Brian Lopes Book and put those tips into practice, ride, ride and ride some more. Have fun that will keep you coming back for more.....
 

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mkiv808 said:
So when you ride behind the saddle, is it ok to be positioned behind it, but so that your groin area is still above it?
Not quite sure what you mean but...

When I go down a steep section on my XC spec. bike, the seat sometimes hits me in the chest when I go over some bumps. With the seat lowered, moving your "center of gravity" back is easier.

If you move back too much, your front wheel gets too light and control suffers.

If it is very steep, you need to be very close to the rear wheel, just to keep your center of gravity between the wheels ( = both wheels on the ground).

It is really the same idea as leaning forward in a steep climb: enough but not too much.
 
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