How to turn?

Discussion in 'Trials' started by SCExpat, Sep 14, 2012.

  1. SCExpat

    SCExpat Ex-expat

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    So I have maybe 30 minutes "peg time" practicing figure 8's. I took a look at a Trials Training Center beginner video and they teach that you should lean the bike way over to turn. I have been just standing up vertical and turning the bars as far as I can. I tried turning leaning the bike over and it seems to work OK for me but.....I kinda like keeping the bike vertical better. Am I developing a bad habit that will cause me problems if/when I progress?
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  2. nwcycle

    nwcycle Long timer

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    See your PM:D
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  3. motojunky

    motojunky Professional Idiot

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    Yes, you are developing a bad habit. :D I did the same with turning. I can turn "correctly" but I have to make a conscious effort - if I just ride naturally, I keep the bike near vertical and move my body incorrectly. Try to make the right way habit while you can. :thumb
    #3
  4. sanjoh

    sanjoh Purveyor of Light

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    Videos have helped me with turning, more peg time is the answer!

    Now how the heck can I make it acrose the balance board I mean it's only 10' long x 10" wide!
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  5. Mike Mc

    Mike Mc Adventurer

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    Total noob here, but throwing this out anyways..
    From what I understand, you want to lean the bike into the turn so it would naturally turn the amount you want without handlebar input. To accomplish this you shift the weight on your pegs to get the desired lean.

    So you steer with your feet.

    Corrections and upbraiding concerning this theory are cheerfully welcomed...
    #5
  6. dmay

    dmay Been here awhile

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    How ever far you are leaning try to keep your head above the center line of the tire contact patches with the ground,this will keep you from tipping into the inside of the turn. This is one area a vintage bike will teach you better than a modern,they won't turn unless you lean them,and they fall over if your weight is too far in. A leaned over bike will take torque from the rear wheel better than just turning the front wheel,but you'll need to shift the weight back to the outside peg with it still leaned over before applying power.
    If you do your turns while straight up you need good throttle and clutch control to keep from pushing the front wheel out....Now If I could just practice what I preach:muutt
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  7. SCExpat

    SCExpat Ex-expat

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    I knew there was a lot more to it than just turning the wheel......but I just want to believe it could be so simple. This is almost like learning to ride all over again and I expected to ride just like a dirt bike......but it is turning (no pun intended) out to be quite different.
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  8. lamotovita

    lamotovita Ageing Adventurer

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    When I started riding Trials at 40, after having ridden motorcycles since my early teens and going all the way through a racing career, I didn't learn to ride all over again, I learned how to ride for the first time.

    By the way, there's a Trial next Sunday at Hayden ID. Why don't you carpool with one, or more, of the Boise boys and come on up?
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  9. Bob_M

    Bob_M Been here awhile

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    I got a great tip this weekend and it worked great. Try to apply pressure on the outside peg by pushing hard as you turn and hold the pressure while you lean the bike over. It feels very different from standing up and will almost force you to stay on top of the bike.

    To turn left, pressure onright peg while initiating the left turn and hold the pressure on the peg, try really pushing on the peg

    Try this in some figure 8s.

    It worked for me this weekend in Exeter, RI on the off camber sections and there were a lot of them.
    #9
  10. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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  11. YOUNZ

    YOUNZ Been here awhile

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    I suppose one could do the same with a Honda Gold Wing or a Harley if they where an acrobat? World class!:lol3
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  12. SCExpat

    SCExpat Ex-expat

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    I just rode with Brian and Vern yesterday for my first practice session, outside of doing figure 8's in the driveway. They are training for the trials in Hayden. I have my inlaws visiting form Brazil so am stuck here. A bit different turning in dirt compared to pavement. I need to work on staying over the pegs (not get my head over the bars too much) staying relaxed and letting the bike move under me. I also learned that I do not need a 270cc bike even though I am big (250lbs). I wanted to go over a small rock.... only about 1 1/2 feet tall. Hit the gas to get the front wheel up and over.....and looped it! :huh
    So I also need to work on throttle control. :lol3
    #12
  13. DerViking

    DerViking Shred

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    Another useful training tool for trials in general, and turning in particular, is a Mountain Bike. Without a steering stop, you can turn very tightly, past 90degrees, which makes staying at the sweet spot more difficult than a moto. Bicycle is much harder to lean, so no help there per se.
    Bicycle is also good for throttle. I know, totally different, but... Riding tight 8s on a hard surface has been good cross training for me. You need much less wheel turn than you'd think, on the inside of a corner. The bicycle is so internal that I feel it translates particularly well to the clutch/brake/throttle constant dance of the moto.
    I ride a custom brazed steel "Trials 29er" a good friend built me. Its a real hoot on the trails, and is great for impromptu rock hopping. Hopping the front and rear on a bicycle is basically the same, but predictably easier. Good practice for refining your technique and precision, as well as your amplitude. Rear wheel hopping from object to object is easier to learn, and has helped me in drops and gaps. Cant wait for Sedona season!
    I was a serious Bicycle Trial rider and Mountain Bike Racer before I rode Moto, and I know it has helped me, in both sports. Two Wheels Good!

    But+1 on above. Peg time is king. Doesn't matter what or where you are riding. Go trail riding, always a hoot on a trials bike. (I have a GG300 :evil). Drag a log or a pipe or just a flat 2x4 into the yard, practice riding down it or across it or weave back and forth. Steering into a slippery pipe(wet root) and lifting and placing really teaches you to be precise. It will also throw you on your ass.
    #13
  14. Sting32

    Sting32 Trials Evangelist

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    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...
    #14
  15. darmst6829

    darmst6829 Been here awhile

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  16. Sting32

    Sting32 Trials Evangelist

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    Dave, how long you been riding trials?

    Go see some videos on youtube, you will see from time to time, even Toni Bou has to use such techniques.

    Here to be more specific, unfortunately this video is on a hill, but the priciple is EXACTLY the same, you let the bike lean, you move your body around to keep the bike balanced. http://vimeo.com/6957480 this guy 2 ply, he's got a lot of nice basic information and instruction videos on Vimeo. Remember, one is the "student" in the shots, so watch carefully. he's learning how to adjust his weight to keep the bike balanced in turns, be it flat ground or hillsides.

    More: http://vimeo.com/9877206

    one more: http://vimeo.com/2783291
    #16
  17. Sting32

    Sting32 Trials Evangelist

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    Local Harley chapter, has events where we do a slow race. the techniques are similiar, but the fact that 99% of the riders do NOT outweigh a full dress harley davidson... :huh However, means techniques work, but have to be modified a little since there is almost no way I can put 200lbs of my body weight on the right footpeg, to compensate for 900lbs of top heavy "HOG" headed to the ground on the left side...

    But the practice does work, usually your sitting down, slipping your ass from side to side on the seat, trying to keep 900lbs as close to upright as possible so you can keep the behemoth, from overtaking your fractional of total bike and rider weight, and slamming you down to the earth. or putting your foot out to dab which means you lose. :lol3
    #17
  18. lineaway

    lineaway Long timer

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    My son has been saying that for almost 13 years (as soon as he learned to talk). At each trials I watch him take all those unnecessary tabs. Last trials I rode my cota 200 in the same class with my son on a 300 raga. I beat him by 25 pts all were lack of exaggerated turns.
    I prefer to clean the sections,some prefer to push the bikes. To each there own technique.:evil
    #18
  19. LowPSI

    LowPSI Been here awhile

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    I'm glad to see people talk about turning. So many points are lost by poor hopping technique when a simple turn will do the job. I checked a section at the So Cal National. It had a simple "S" turn on the side of the hill. It should have been cleans all day. Instead I had to watch riders HOP N DAB and come out with a 3 before they even got to the hard part of the section. It hurt to watch.


    HOPPING IS LIKE DANCING. DON'T DO IT IN PUBLIC UNLESS YOU'RE GOOD AT IT.
    #19
  20. DrKayak

    DrKayak Retro Rider

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    I have been riding 10 months and used to think the same thing. I could do a tight turn at full lock in the yard going very slow. .... Which proved a useless skill a my first trials event in pine needles and rocks.

    You turn the front too much it will plow sideway in loose dirt = dab.
    You hit a rock going slow with the front turned it will stop the bike, push the rock, or shoot you off line, either way = dab or worse.

    I have a steep creek bank with a fence at the top in my yard. You have to do a complete U-turn on the hillside. The fence at the top keeps you honest. If I turn the front at all it plows in the loose dirt. It is impossible to do clean without "exaggerated turning technique".

    Riding Vintage/begginer day - advance line in our club turnning is all that matters. There are never any log jumps.
    #20