Thread: How to turn?
View Single Post
Old 10-18-2012, 11:15 AM   #46
Studly Adventurer
toro618's Avatar
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: NJ
Oddometer: 987
Originally Posted by Sting32 View Post
Let me just say, that the video in question on TTC, is a typical exaggeration yet goal of learning your balance in a turn. When I teach new riders to our sport, we have to do 2 things, explain and demonstrate. WHen we demonstrate, it is seemingly neat and necessary to show you the extreme or "what you can do" with the information we're passing along. you will start out just trying to lean the bike somewhat, and compensating for the bikes new "balance point" by adjusting the position of your body.

Just like racing, showing you a jump, really good riders might just knack knack, mid air or a big kick/whip, but that doesnt really change how a jump needs to be taken as far as takeoff and landing.

In trials you are working without centripetal (is that the word) forces you get when riding at speeds above a jogging pace. think of the bike's footpegs and handlebars, at all times as a balance beam, a balance beam that changes the position of the middle balance point, depending on what turn dynamics are in play. you shift your weight to compensate a left turn, by loading the outside peg in a turn. I like my beginners to use this rule of thumb for flat ground turns... Whichever direction you turn, you MUST allow that arm to become STRAIGHT. The handlbar is now being held UP by your arm, the other arm bends, so that your body can distribute the weight onto the other arm a little but mostly the peg on the opposite side of the turn.

Litterally if you turn left, you lean the bike over to the left, and you left arm goes straight, and holds pressure holding the bike from falling any farther than you need it to to complete a turn. At the same time you body shifts all (or most) of the weight of your body, to the right peg. this is the balancing "act" the more you lean the bike the more weight has to compensate for the weight of the bike that is trying to pull you to the ground on the left. All of this struggle as it were, is about reaching a balance or stale mate as it were with the changing center of balance left to right.

That film on TTC, shows a really good extreme turning condition with bike demonstrated at an extreme lean, yet often useful position. IT IS something you need to be able to do, as practice. When I practice most anything, I try to make test/practice more extreme than what I hope to have to use in a section. WHY? I have always managed to have to use a skill exagerated out to extreme, time and again, to recover from maybe slipping off a hill or approach wrong.

I'll state TURNING is the most basic principle in trials. It should be so easy to you to do like the video shows, at "very soon" in your trials career. It is like dribbling is to basketball. if you cannot dribble naturally without looking like a dork, you cant do anything in basketball...

SO, just keep on working on your turns. I swear, that you should be able to accomplish the same position after an hour of practicing figure 8's. That is if you practice like I do, I do it until I can do it, before I do other things. be it in 20 minutes shifts or a full hour at a time.

For another "what it is worth" my students are required to do 20 figure 8's anytime we unload the bikes from garage or pickup... And anytime they are waiting "their turn" on a practice section or what have you. It is that important. You then take these figure 8's and visually lay them out over ALL terrain, hills ditches, and you rotate that 8 all around that stuff. when you do turns in your sleep so to speak, then you are ready (grasshopper) to be challenged more in trials...
Sting, when you teach the proper technique of slow, controlled, and exagerated turning do you find that most are better at turning to one side than the other?

I know in my case when doing slow figure 8's and turning left I naturally lean the bike way over into the turn and simultaniously weigh the outside peg, bend the outside knee, and throw my wieght on the outside knee. However, when turning right I have to tell my brain to bend the outside knee a little more and tell my brain to throw my weight to the outside knee does not come as naturally. Who knows, my left side may be a little slower from all the crashes I've had on the right side of my head
toro618 is offline   Reply With Quote