I broke my pedal today. I own a bmx. It happened when I landed from an american bunnyhop. Any tips to land softly? (I have even bent the rim.)
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You can practice making the bunny hop more of a fluid movement. Imagine a jump without a bike over something quite tall:
Being rigid, stiff or having bad timing with any of that will cause harsher landings with or without a bike.
Trials riders dropping from large heights extend the rear wheel and have that land first with their legs absorbing the landing with the front wheel landing a bit later.
Trying to refine your technique with smaller jumps will help by focusing on the sequence of things to make you and your bike act like a big spring:
Work a bit on smaller bunny hops - maybe up and down a curb - until you can start to feel yourself landing with a bit less force or until you get a sense that you are anticipating the landing.
It was easier for me to yank and jump higher, but it took a while for me to learn how to jump in such a way that I was landing more gracefully and not thrashing my bike, body and wrists. The finesse and feel takes longer but is worth it!
Everything happens in such a short period of time it's a little tough but you'll start to feel what works and what doesn't.
If you have a modern BMX then the saddle should be super low. If it is not then move it at the very bottom.
BMX bikes are very very stiff (100psi tyres, rigid cromo frame, rock solid wheels) so you need to absorb the imact with your feet and upper body. Landing with the rear wheel first (just slightly) helps trigger the feet at the exactly correct time. Another thing that helps is that when you start descending (from the bunnyhop) you extend your feet in order to give yourself enough room for absorption.
If you don't absorb with your feet then the weakest link will have to deal with the whole impact (knees, pedals, head tube of frame etc).
Keep in mind though that parts do fail. Broken pedals and bent rims is not something unexpectable in the BMX world.