I recently bought a bicycle and am new to biking. So I decided to try it out on an inclined part of the road near my home. as I descended on the incline just after travelling a few metres I heard a clink sound from the chain system. Naturally I braked at once and decided to check but I could not find anything visibly wrong.

However as I headed back home to further check for something I noticed that whenever I move my rear wheel opposite to its usual direction of motion the pedals started to move opposite to their natural direction of rotation. How can I fix this?

  • 4
    That sounds like normal behaviour of a freewheel system.
    – Chris H
    Dec 20, 2016 at 13:16
  • 1
    I don't understand the downvote. It sounds like a reasonable beginner question.
    – RoboKaren
    Dec 20, 2016 at 18:09
  • 1
    What you have is perfectly normal behavior. Dec 21, 2016 at 1:26
  • Also some (most now) BMX riders uses freecoaster hub allowing them to ride in reverse without pedaling back.
    – STM
    Dec 21, 2016 at 20:56

1 Answer 1


There is nothing to fix, most of the hub works like that. It is normal behaviour implied by the hub internal design. If you really want your pedal not to rotate when moving bike backwards, you can move to single speed, coaster brake, traditional Velosteel hub. Personally strongly dissuade.

enter image description here

edit after comment:

This photo should explain why wheel is not conjugated with chain, while no force is applied on the pedal. At the right side we can see rollers in its housing. It slides back and forth.

enter image description here

This photo is even better. 2 clutches. Moving forward pushes right against hub housing, conjugating sprocket with hub housing. Moving backwards pushes left against coaster brake pad. Pads does not rotate because of being engaged with brake arm attached to frame. Because of friction hub housing start to conjugate with brake pad.

No force applied - everything disengaged. enter image description here

  • "If you really want your pedal not to rotate when moving bike backwards" ???
    – njzk2
    Dec 20, 2016 at 15:03
  • @njzk2 what's the problem?
    – krzyski
    Dec 20, 2016 at 15:12
  • 2
    if your pedals do not rotate when you move the bike backward, I don't understand how the bike can move forward when you pedal forward.
    – njzk2
    Dec 20, 2016 at 15:15
  • @njzk2 because of different internal design, lack of flaps and roller presence that kind of hub works as described. When force is applied on pedal. roller holder slides sideways and gain engangement. This kind of mechanical clutch is similar to coaster brake, but it conjugates chain with hub housing, thats way with entire wheel, while the second mentioned conjugates frame via brake arm with hub housing.
    – krzyski
    Dec 20, 2016 at 16:21
  • 1
    thanks for the detailed explanation! I never saw such a mechanism, but it makes sense now
    – njzk2
    Dec 20, 2016 at 17:18

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