Beginner Mountain Biking Basics Tips & Advice
Below is a great Mountain Biking Beginner’s Guide for those new to this exhilarating outdoor sport, to help you get on your way safely and knowing what’s right for you. If you’ve just been bitten by the mountain biking bug, chances are you’re still trying to familiarize yourself with all that’s involved and required. Especially when it comes to selecting the right gear and techniques related to this fascinating sport.
Such popular terms used with serious mountain bikers as;
and a digital tire-pressure gauge or even proper car bike racks might seem foreign to you right now, but you will become familiar with them as you go along. However, prior to tackling these cool biking phrases, it’s much more important to know the basics of this engaging sport first off.
From essential equipment down to suitable attire, getting proper equipped is a priority!
Selecting a Suitable Mountain Bike for Beginners
While a bicycle is deemed a complex machine, choosing one that is right for you does not have to be as complicated. Arm yourself with the necessary measurements, (inside leg and your height) and head to the nearest local bike shop and you’re one step closer to taking home the bike that’s just right for you!
Mountain Bike Shop
In most cases, bike shops are owned and run by experienced biking enthusiasts who are always ever eager to share their knowledge and expertise, and of course answer your questions. It goes without saying, if you are a beginner, finding the right bike for you should be priority one.
Mountain Biking Beginner’s Guide for Purchasing Bikes
Like most everything these days, new products service almost daily, but you do have a few bike options at your disposal. There are 3 specific types of mountain bikes you can choose from which include;
1. Hardtail Mountain Bike
Hardtail Mountain Biking
True to its name, this type has been designed to take on technical terrains. While priced similarly to most rigid bikes, it is a heavier bike. However, it is considered lighter, cheaper, and with better handling capability compared to most full-suspension bikes.
2. Full-suspension Mountain Bike
A Full Suspension Mountain Bike
Characterized as having both rear and front suspensions, full-suspension bikes are deemed ideal when you tackle terrains that are more technical. While comfort is something you can expect from a full-suspension bike, this comfort comes with a hefty price tag for serious mountain bikers!
3. Rigid Mountain Bike
Fully Rigid Mountain Bikes
Devoid of suspension, this type is not only easier to maintain, but is also considered ideal when you are learning to ride off-road. However, if you are looking into exploring heavy roots or rocky tracks, this may not be the right bike for you, as both control and comfort are compromised.
Proper Mountain Biking Clothing
While mountain biking is no doubt an amazing sport, it can also be dangerous. That being said, a helmet is considered a necessity when biking. When choosing a helmet, opt for one that will not obscure your vision. In addition, make sure the chin strap is sturdy and the straps should not cover your ear. If you have other concerns regarding your helmet that you need addressed, do not hesitate to ask prior to parting with your money.
Experienced bikers sometimes forgo the use of gloves, however for starters, wearing one is considered a sound idea as it will help lessen soreness brought about by bike vibrations. While fingerless mitts are ideal for summer, full gloves are deemed a more suitable choice for the cold winter months.
Nowadays, there are a lot of options available in the market, with varied levels of insulation and padding. Just like the helmet, it will work to your advantage if you try it on prior to buying. Ensure your digits won’t feel cramped and that there should be no bunching of material on your palms.
Other Mountain Bike Clothing to Consider
While wearing a T-shirt when riding is considered fine and dandy, they can’t keep moisture away from your body when you ride. In line with this, it’s always a good idea to invest in a good cycling top that allows you to stretch and move comfortably while keeping sweat and moisture away. In addition, take into consideration the weather when choosing the appropriate cycling top to wear. As well, carrying a waterproof or windproof jacket is also considered a good investment, especially on those longer rides to keep you dry and comfortable!
When it comes to cycling bottoms, comfort should be a main consideration. If you are a beginner, chances are your body is not accustomed to sitting in the bike saddle for a long time. Taking this fact into account, it will be a prudent idea to opt for padded tights. As cliché as it may sound, in cycling, a little padding will definitely go a long way.
While a padded bottom might seem a bit odd at first, you will definitely appreciate it as you go along.
When riding, wearing eye protection is considered compulsory. While there are many options to choose from when it comes to protective eye wear, clear glasses are preferred by many. Not only are they wearable the whole year round but your visibility is not compromised even if you enter a wooded section. You can also look into ones that come with interchangeable lenses as it will prove helpful when tackling areas with poor light conditions.
Mountain biking is a fun and fascinating sport, however it is not without any risks. Armed with the above mentioned basics however, you can look forward to a safe and exhilarating ride.
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Did You Know …
Mountain biking was first introduced to the Summer Olympics in the 1996 Atlanta Games.