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Putting aside the question should one ever ride on the sidewalk, I would like to jump curbs safely and seamlessly.

Assume a hardtail mountain bike with high saddle (we are in the city), at speed 30 km/h. I have heard of several techniques:

1.

  • Move weight to the rear.
  • Pull on the handlebars, the tire climbs the curb, without touching it.
  • Move the weight to the front, in order to unload the rear tire. The rear tire impacts the curb, but is not carrying much weight.

2.

  • Stand up.
  • Push on the handlebar.
  • The fork compresses, then jumps over the curb.
  • Let the rear roll over the curb, like in the previous case.

      3.
  • Stand up.
  • Push on the handlebars, crouch as much as possible.
  • As the fork begins to decompress, jump up.
  • Push with feet against pedals (pedals vertical) in order to pull the bike up. Pull up on the handlebar.
  • After the front tire has passed the curb, push down on it, to gain height in the rear.

Which one is best, or is there a better way?

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2  
The last one is called bunny hop and is generally preferred above the other two techniques, at least in MTB forums. –  arne Feb 21 at 11:17
    
Why the downvote? –  Vorac Mar 2 at 10:03

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

The last one. As already mentioned, you're describing a bunny hop.

Allowing the rear to hit the curb - even if there is relatively little weight over it - will increase the risk of pinch punctures, potential rim damage, and it will slow you down considerably more than a clean bunny hop.

Hops are weird. Once you can do them you will never understand why you couldn't. They're much easier if you use clipless pedals, but learning to do it on flat pedals will be hugely beneficial to your technique.

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1  
Great, I am already jumping small (30cm) holes, but am still scared to jump obstacles, that rise above the level. Maybe a cartoon box will be a nice start. I am afraid of hitting the rim of the curb with the rear tire, with all my weight over it, and ruining the tube and the rim. –  Vorac Mar 6 at 13:58
    
Yep, cardboard boxes of increasing sizes increased my confidence enough to try medium-height curbs at traffic. Feels great! –  Vorac Jul 30 at 10:18

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