I am practicing the technique of cornering, where one must lean the bicycle into the turn, while keeping the body more or less vertical. A (possibly exaggerated) picture I found on Google:

enter image description here

The problem is, when keeping the pedals horizontal, I always ride with my left foot ahead of the right one (like the guy on the picture does). When I turn left (like in the picture), everything is OK. But when I turn right, the saddle gets in the way (you can imagine it by looking at the picture - if he turned right, the saddle would push his right leg out of place).

What can I do about it? The following works but is not ideal:

  • Switch the legs when changing turning direction - inconvenient because I am used to the "left foot ahead" posture, and also because changing too often throws me off-balance
  • Remove the saddle - works very good, but then my legs don't rest, and get tired very quickly
  • 6
    Learn to switch legs. There are other reasons why you need to be ambidextrous (not saying you cannot favor one stance, just you have to be competent and confident with both). In the wild, not every corner ends up nicely placed so your end up with you left leg forward going into it.....
    – mattnz
    Dec 10 '14 at 19:36
  • 2
    I don't believe the rider in the picture has horizontal cranks. Looks to me like his right leg is down and his left is up. Or is that just me? Dec 10 '14 at 19:40
  • 1
    What is the purpose of that lean? You have less tread in contact and less pedal clearance. If anything I lean the bike in the other direction. Otherwise - switch legs.
    – paparazzo
    Dec 10 '14 at 19:41
  • 1
    @Blam It allows you to increase pressure down on the bike, increasing traction and allowing you to carve on properly cambered turns. Horrible idea, of course, on off camber turns and in flat spots like this. However, my guess (with the cones) is that this is some sort of technique clinic happening. Dec 10 '14 at 19:52
  • 3
    Have a look at this: youtube.com/watch?v=gF5K9V2w6W8
    – cherouvim
    Dec 10 '14 at 20:17

I believe popular advice for MTB carving is to drop the outside pedal, rather than keeping the pedals horizontal. If you then dump your weight to the outside pedal (off your bars) you can lower your center of gravity some and in the case of pumping that weight dump, increase your traction. While keeping your pedals horizontal for obstacles increases your clearance, it isn't what you want cornering.

  • +1 Other reasons include side thread engagement, increased clearance, intuitive body mechanics. Go ask Fabien Barel.
    – Vorac
    Aug 1 '20 at 0:06

A technological solution is a Dropper Seat Post. But you should really learn to switch legs to match the turn. You generally want the outside leg down and weighted.

http://www.leelikesbikes.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/P2PIcover.pngMTB cornering with outside foot down

  • In any technical riding, the seat should be low, with or without drop post - so it doesn't solve any problems; it only makes riding more convenient.
    – anatolyg
    Dec 11 '14 at 12:06

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.