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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
The manual trainer is locking your rear wheel in place and removing any of the psychological aspects of manualing like looping out or washing out the front if you veer too much to one side in the air.

The manual is a complex movement that requires you to get the wheel off the ground, have your body in a balanced position to be able to maintain the raised wheel and also avoid too much lateral movement. The manual trainer eliminates a lot of the difficulty which is why a lot of people think they are worthless.

I can't manual very well at all but when you get the initial movement correct its entirely effortless. Your weight shift is doing the work. The hard part for me is keeping the wheel up and avoiding going left or right in the air. As others have said, just practice. Ditch the manual machine and just practice them.
I totally agree! The manual trainer and training manual on street are quite different. I'll practice outside again later. Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 · (Edited)
Some bikes are harder to manual than others, but never impossible. The biggest difference make the chainstay length, stem length and even seat height. Bike's geometry can impact manuals big time.
Good luck and keep trying, work those manuals!
My bike is a medium vitus sentier. I'm short or maybe average, 5'6". The first time I used the bike 3 weeks ago, it felt it was big for me. I already lowered the seat height but it looks like when I try to lean backwards, my upper body is so stretched/extended to the point my body is touching the seat. We'll see. I guess I'll be able to do it but might take more time for me.

Thanks a lot!
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
If it makes you feel any better, I spent the first part of COVID practicing manuals, wheelies and track stands for at least 20 minutes/day, usually significantly more, over a couple of months. I'm still no expert now. It takes a ton of practice.
  • My track stands on the driveway are awesome. Carry-over to the trail is so-so. Has definitely helped technical riding, but I can't track stand forever on the trail
  • Wheelies are good enough. Can get 4-5 pedal strokes. I'm not going to wow anyone. That said, it's functional enough that I can now wheelie drop anything I dare
  • Manuals. Those are f'ing tough. Not even close to being able to ride a manual down the street. I can certainly use the motion to pull up the front wheel. Log hopping has improved exponentially (not really, but the word sounds good). I can use the manual-slight pause-hop method to clear some pretty big logs efficiently.
So...if you just looked at my results, not so great when it comes to tricks. But, they've all had a positive impact on my riding. Keep it up!

P.S. Ryan Leech videos are awesome. Give him some money, he deserves it. The step-by-step breakdown is really helpful. Much better than the random bro on the Internet.
Will do. I'll keep practicing daily for 20-30 mins!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
the only answer is practice. there is no magic trick to it like the the manual trainer would have you believe..
Yep, I found out the first day that using manual trainer was easy. On the same day, I tried manual on street. It was totally friggin different! HAHAHA! I've been practicing manual on street and my best duration was like 1.5 seconds, HAHAHA!
 

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Ibis Ripley
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You might record some video of yourself. It might give you some ideas. Sometimes you can feel like you are doing one thing, but actually doing another.


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Its in the lower body really, the legs and hips like others said. You make a backwards L motion, down then back with your legs and hips. The arms just connect you to the bars, and ideally will stay extended, like when doing a wheelie. Pulling up only doesn't work. If you learn them with bad technique(relying on pulling up too much) you risk straining your lower back getting into position, it shouldn't hurt your back if you're doing it right. Looping out is when you go back too far and come off the bike. Thats why you cover the rear brake at all times.

A good way to learn how far you have to move down and back is doing it as slow as you can, and intentionally loop out. You can catch yourself easy at that speed, but you'll see what it takes. Once you get the wheel up then its a matter of balance and rear brake. You'll know when you're reaching the ideal balance point because your speed will maintain or even increase. If you balance with the front low, your body will be farther back over the wheel, and vise versa. Just takes seat time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Its in the lower body really, the legs and hips like others said. You make a backwards L motion, down then back with your legs and hips. The arms just connect you to the bars, and ideally will stay extended, like when doing a wheelie. Pulling up only doesn't work. If you learn them with bad technique(relying on pulling up too much) you risk straining your lower back getting into position, it shouldn't hurt your back if you're doing it right. Looping out is when you go back too far and come off the bike. Thats why you cover the rear brake at all times.

A good way to learn how far you have to move down and back is doing it as slow as you can, and intentionally loop out. You can catch yourself easy at that speed, but you'll see what it takes. Once you get the wheel up then its a matter of balance and rear brake. You'll know when you're reaching the ideal balance point because your speed will maintain or even increase. If you balance with the front low, your body will be farther back over the wheel, and vise versa. Just takes seat time.
That's what I did with my almost 1.5 hours of practicing today. Maybe I made some improvement because I felt some longer air time, like it felt like front wheel stayed longer.

Is looping out done intentionally or do we wait for it to happen?
 

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That's what I did with my almost 1.5 hours of practicing today. Maybe I made some improvement because I felt some longer air time, like it felt like front wheel stayed longer.

Is looping out done intentionally or do we wait for it to happen?
You don't have to, but if you do it now in a controlled way at low speed then it may help overcome the fear factor of it happening down the road. Plus you'll see how far back you can go.
 

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Manny mosheens are far, far away from the real world of practice. They can help in acquiring the feeling of the lofted front wheel but that is where it ends.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
You don't have to, but if you do it now in a controlled way at low speed then it may help overcome the fear factor of it happening down the road. Plus you'll see how far back you can go.
And yes, I was doing it slowly before. I'll practice again tomorrow. hehehe
 

Rippin da fAt
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I've only manual'd once on a trail, I went farther back then I thought I should, didn't fall off, but damn, scared me pretty good lol.
Never went that far since.

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This is a good time to use platform pedals, so you can simply step off instead of bustin' your ass! Manuals are euphoric and should be a tool for trail riding in everyone's quiver.


Totally agree. That's why I've only been practicing on street
Tha steet!! I spend part of my lunch hour with a bike. I spend part of my evening with a bike and a German Shepherd.
Frankly, 30 minutes to an hour, several days a week is a great way to get some practice going on. Try to work on a couple of things for the focus to get the progress happening.
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
This is a good time to use platform pedals, so you can simply step off instead of bustin' your ass! Manuals are euphoric and should be a tool for trail riding in everyone's quiver.




Tha steet!! I spend part of my lunch hour with a bike. I spend part of my evening with a bike and a German Shepherd.
Frankly, 30 minutes to an hour, several days a week is a great way to get some practice going on. Try to work on a couple of things for the focus to get the progress happening.
Yep, everyday somewhere between 12-2 and 6-8pm, I practice it. Most of the time in the evening. My goal is to really be able to do it even for just 10 seconds this year! I'm sure I'll be able to do it.
 

Rippin da fAt
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Yep, everyday somewhere between 12-2 and 6-8pm, I practice it. Most of the time in the evening. My goal is to really be able to do it even for just 10 seconds this year! I'm sure I'll be able to do it.
Persevere, my friend!
 

Rippin da fAt
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Will do! I'll keep everyone posted :)
Thanks for all the encouragements!
Will be great to follow this. My bikes have been doing more than their share over time. Being cardiac therapists, a damn great source of entertainement cause I am easily entertained! Get to laugh at me, doesn't get better than that.

Frankly, it has been too long since my trials bike has been haunting the loco scene. Gotsta get back at that too however, that is another topic.
 
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