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Griping the bike with your knees or not to?

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What do you guys think of gripping the bike with your knees on trails? Last time I was out I loosened up my grip and it felt better especially on the rocky trails but I'm wondering if this is slowing me down. I'm going riding Saturday and want to try a few things out to see if I can get faster and more consistent since my buddy riding with me is now into hare scramble racing so I wanna make sure I can keep up.

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I always grip the bike with my knees. Makes holding onto a little easier. The only time I don't grip is when I'm shifting positions from the from of the seat to the back or vice versa. When you're in rocky sections stand up off the seat. Keep your knees slightly bent to absorb some shock, helps a ton.

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ok and 85% of the time I am standing but last time I didn't grip the bike with my knees so on those rocky sections it was able to move a little bit more but I didn't feel comfortable going too fast over them. I'm still trying to get a feel for being on 2 wheels again and with the quad it wasn't that big of deal gripping with my knees but I always hear and was told to grip with my knees. 

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I guess everybody has its own riding style. I only grip the bike when i am going fast. Gives me more stability and makes me feel more secure. On rocky sections i tend to open my legs a bit so the bike can move around freely and do the work for me. I just have to "hang on" and give the bike directions. Suspension and keeping my arms loose will do the rest for me.

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I guess everybody has its own riding style. I only grip the bike when i am going fast. Gives me more stability and makes me feel more secure. On rocky sections i tend to open my legs a bit so the bike can move around freely and do the work for me. I just have to "hang on" and give the bike directions. Suspension and keeping my arms loose will do the rest for me.

 

Thanks and that sounds kinda like what I was doing.

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For low speed rock crawling (1st gear/big rocks) let the bike move around, but for faster rocks I like to grip with the knees and be hard on the gas, leaning back a little to keep the front wheel as light as possible.  I also try to use the bigger impeded rocks to launch over stuff.  Get off the gas when you need to use the front wheel to turn or brake.

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For low speed rock crawling (1st gear/big rocks) let the bike move around, but for faster rocks I like to grip with the knees and be hard on the gas, leaning back a little to keep the front wheel as light as possible.  I also try to use the bigger impeded rocks to launch over stuff.  Get off the gas when you need to use the front wheel to turn or brake.

Thanks and I know I've heard guys say to launch off some of the rocks and maybe I'm over thinking it since that's one of my problems is I'm over thinking some of the stuff but for landing back after launch off the rock is there a better way to do that?

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Thanks and I know I've heard guys say to launch off some of the rocks and maybe I'm over thinking it since that's one of my problems is I'm over thinking some of the stuff but for landing back after launch off the rock is there a better way to do that?

 

You want to land rear first, or rear slightly before the front.  It's all determined by how you take off.  Pre-loading/body position, throttle, slope of the trail and the shape of the rock all influence how the bike will land.

 

Best way is to practice on every suitable rock you find until you're confident in controlling the take off and landing.  While you're learning it's best to not land on rocks.  Pick rocks that have an easy landing and work your way up. 

 

Make sure your suspension is tuned and the bushings and oil are fresh.  Bad things happen in the rocks when your suspension is in need of a service.

 

You also have to be very careful to pick a good landing when you do start landing on rocks.  You don't want to tag a rock with your pegs when your suspension is bottomed out.

Edited by Colorado^

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You want to land rear first, or rear slightly before the front.  It's all determined by how you take off.  Pre-loading/body position, throttle, slope of the trail and the shape of the rock all influence how the bike will land.

 

Best way is to practice on every suitable rock you find until you're confident in controlling the take off and landing.  While you're learning it's best to not land on rocks.  Pick rocks that have an easy landing and work your way up. 

 

Make sure your suspension is tuned and the bushings and oil are fresh.  Bad things happen in the rocks when your suspension is in need of a service.

 

You also have to be very careful to pick a good landing when you do start landing on rocks.  You don't want to tag a rock with your pegs when your suspension is bottomed out.

 

Ok and the suspension was just serviced in January so I'm good for that. We have a lot of rock where I ride so we could have some pretty nasty trails that I'm riding down.

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Good advice above. Basic rule is: riding fast, then grip. Slow and technical, stay open.

 

MXers ALWAYS grip and this gets them into trouble in the woods, usually in rock gardens. They are forced to commit to lines.

 

Trials riders on the other hand will move their feet out on the peg, so that the peg tip is in the middle of the boot. Then they'll tip the bike in as needed, maintaining a flat foot. To do this you need to be almost comically spread-legged. It works well though.

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Good advice above. Basic rule is: riding fast, then grip. Slow and technical, stay open.

 

MXers ALWAYS grip and this gets them into trouble in the woods, usually in rock gardens. They are forced to commit to lines.

 

Trials riders on the other hand will move their feet out on the peg, so that the peg tip is in the middle of the boot. Then they'll tip the bike in as needed, maintaining a flat foot. To do this you need to be almost comically spread-legged. It works well though.

Ok thanks and think last time I was always open but not like the trials guys so I'll have to grip the bike in the fast stuff now.

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