April 5, 2017
What do you do when your rear wheel is about to impact a decent size rock, log, or ledge?
If you're a beginner or intermediate-level rider, you probably rely on some combination of momentum, traction, rear suspension, hope and prayer.
If you've taken an MTB 101 course, your instructor probably taught you how to 'load and explode' followed by a lifting of the rear wheel with a scooping/clawing of the pedal with the rear foot. And you probably never do that type of 'lifting' for good reason.
In this episode, Griff explains why rear wheel unweighting is much more useful than rear wheel lifting. Plus, it's much easier to learn.
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I recorded this video of me going over this rock at Lebanon Hills Mountain Biking Trails on a hardtail fat bike about a year ago. As you can see in the stop motion segment, I’m not using a bunny hop.
I’m using a manual to lift my front wheel so it kisses the top of the rock. I then load/compress my weight (not enough, it appears) and then ‘explode’ straight up, unweighting my rear wheel early enough so that it is rising up off the ground as it impacts the rock.
I’m not scooping or clawing or lifting my rear wheel with my trailing right foot at all.
I made this short video a couple years ago, demonstrating rear wheel unweighting over some small firewood, followed by rear wheel unweighting up a curb, no front wheel braking.
In the last segment, it might look like I’m using a scooping/clawing/lifting technique with my rear foot, toes pointed down. But I’m not. I’m just leaping, with hand pressure on my bars opposed with foot pressure on my pedals.