I recorded myself while practicing doing manuals or even attempting to loop out to practice bailing. I noticed that whenever I start to preload and pull back, my bike stops in place until my front wheel goes back down. Am I simply going too slow? Is this the reason why I tend to fall sideways whenever I try shifting further?

  • 2
    If you'd post the video we could tell for sure but if you really lose all forward motion when getting the frontwheel up then yes, sounds like you're going too slow. And yes manuals are harder when going slow (just like when riding slowly is harder than with some speed).
    – stijn
    Jun 5, 2018 at 9:57
  • Yes, it looks like I'm pulling the front wheel while in place. When it goes down, I move forward again but a bit slower. I'm afraid of going faster because I might not be able to run with the bike when bailing. I remember being able to do this a while back but thought it was wrong so I didn't try again. I guess I just need to suck it up, go faster, and not freeze up.
    – Rey Pader
    Jun 6, 2018 at 1:45
  • @ReyPader Just go gaster, but no so fast. If you hava a rear break just pull it, the will come down. But if you really want to pull out manuals like a champ, if you are breakless you need to know how to bail. Bailing is a part of the trick, it teaches you how far is enough
    – dmb
    Jun 6, 2018 at 3:25
  • From your description, the difference between the speed you have now and the maximum one at which you can run after bailing out is big enough still, you can afford to go somewhat faster.
    – stijn
    Jun 6, 2018 at 9:20
  • VT leave open - dmb and stijn seem to understand it fine. As a non-stunter, I read the question as "Trying to do a wheelie but the bike's forward momentum goes to 0 when the front wheel leaves the ground - how to keep rolling forward?" and "spin out" means over-lifting the front-wheel so the bike goes over backward and the rider has to step off the back onto the ground. Feel free to edit your question to increase clarity.
    – Criggie
    Jun 6, 2018 at 19:30

1 Answer 1


Yes, that's the effect of your Mass Center moving around a reference point, in this case your bike. You and your bike make a whole thing, So when you "preload" you shift your torso towards the handlebars and down, which makes the bike to go away from you on the oposite direction. Given that you have foward direction, it anulates. And when you pull up your front wheel, your back wheel should be coming under your body. Meanwhile you bend your legs and stretch your arms, counterbalancing the weight of the front portion of your bike. So in short, you try to mantain your balance point(center of mass) over the back axle and near it.

Other thing is that a wheel, or any object that has mass and rotates on an axle. Has a "Moment of inertia(aka rotational inerti or angular mass)", which means the faster the wheel spins, the harder is to take it out of it's trajectory. In simple english, means that it's easier to go straight on a manual the faster you go, because the wheel won't like to lay down with more speed.

To lean either right or left on a manual, you should do it bowing your feets and knees. It depends mostly where you put your weight on your pedals, so leaning your feets both to left will make a sharp turn so be careful.

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