The Stack Overflow podcast is back! Listen to an interview with our new CEO.
50

Reference - Cyclecraft by John Franklin A cycle takes more than twice as far to stop using only the rear brake compared to using only the front brake, which will usually stop the machine just as quickly as using both brakes. Nevertheless, you should always apply the rear brake, and slightly in advance of the front brake, so that a slight skid at the rear ...


36

Years ago when cars started to get ABS, the argument was that a skilled driver could stop quicker with it turned off, and there was proof of it. When Traction control came in a skilled driver could go faster with it turned off. When ESP became available, ditto. We all know that an unskilled driver benefits enormously from these aids, and it turns out not ...


30

The simple, short answer is practice. Simply riding around at moderate to slow speeds, practicing starting off, braking, stopping and negotiating tight turns will help build balance, confidence and control of the bike. Do this in a quiet spot away from people and cars if you can. If you are worried about falling do it on grass. The most useful foundational ...


25

You're talking about a "bunny hop" and it can be done at speed on a loaded bike but it's high risk. You'd almost certainly be better off jumping off the bike and rolling. US Bike Trials call it a "side hop", but in anglonesia I've mostly heard it called a bunny hop. Here's a photo of the 2006 Cycle Messenger World Champion doing more or less that at about ...


24

I happen to be one of those who attract new riders into the sport, and have given the basic training to many people. Here is a brief of what I try to teach them: Riding position Be ready to react Have your bike properly tuned/fitted Scan the terrain(Look forward) Use a proper braking technique Never get to the extremes Grow progressively The most important: ...


24

To ride in the dark is difficult. You should have a decent head light on your helmet so it tracks your vision, and a handlebar light that tracks where your front wheel is aiming. In addition you should have a secondary front light and two back lights for redundancy. We don't make product recommendations here, but that would be the minimum. To increase ...


22

I've always used both. Among other things, if you apply both brakes you're in much better shape should one of the brakes fail suddenly (eg, broken cable, unanticipated wet rim, etc). But then, I've never pretended to be a racer. Added: It should be noted that, unless you're riding like a maniac (or at least like a BMX rider), 95% (at least) of your ...


22

There are three approaches you can use in combination. Preparation Tough tires - people have their favorite puncture-proof tires. Kevlar reinforced tires work pretty well. Hard tires - pump your tires to close to the maximum pressure written on the side wall. This definitely reduces punctures, and can be combined with puncture-proof tires. At the time ...


19

Do it little by little. Like a learner driver, go find a car park or a quiet road, you don't want to be doing this in the traffic. Ironically, you probably don't want to be doing this on a surface that will give you a soft landing. I suppose a flat playing field might work, but cycling on grass isn't as smooth as cycling on tarmac and you'll need a ...


19

I'd qualify myself as a "skilled" cyclist. I would not say that I only use the front brake 95% of the time. When riding in a peleton it would be very dangerous to make any kind of sudden stop as you cause alarm and possible collision with people behind you. If i do need to slow in a group, I use only my back brake. It allows a far more gradual slowing and ...


17

In german this is called "Hinterrad versetzen" -- "displacing the back wheel". I got to learn this in an mtb course I took a while back. If you can, try to find an instructor or other experienced rider to teach you. How to practice: Start very, very small and always wear full protective gear, i.e. a full-face helmet and vest in case you crash. You will ...


15

Yes there is one main trick, and some regular skills. The trick is: if you LOWER THE TIRE PRESSURE, any tire will float over sand like magic. It should not be so underinflated as to allow easy pinch flats, but the lower the pressure, the more marked the floating effect. There are just two limitations: If the tire is skinny (low volume) it might not be ...


15

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 ...


15

Novices I've ridden with are surprised and pleased that I ride behind them. They set the pace I can watch what they're doing I can ride close (enough to talk) without being too close (i.e. without colliding) I can recommend which gear they change and when I keep car traffic off their tail (e.g. by my using arm-signals to the car to say "slow down" or "...


14

Unless you have a Victorian ladies style frame, crossing your leg in front of you is a fine way to crash.


14

Standing to pedal won't damage your knees. Supporting and propelling you when you are standing is exactly what knees are designed to do. If anything standing is better for your knees than sitting. When you are sitting down their motion is limited because the top and bottoms of your legs are 'fixed' in position. When you stand your knees and hips can move ...


14

Breathe however you need to in order to get oxygen in. This goes for your mouth, nose or a combination of both. Riders warming up on their trainers have cotton in their noses that contains something like vapor rub that helps open up the nasal passages. They don't have it in their noses during the race itself.


14

Use proper positioning. This is most important. Unless the outermost lane is as wide as two SUVs, ride in its center. When it's safe, reasonable and necessary to let drivers pass, kindly move over; but always leave at least 18 inches (0.5 m) between you and the curb. The driver behind you may have to wait a minute or two, but they'll survive. If they've ...


14

There's no real way to be completely sure but to try it. Anything else is merely a guess and no one can be 100% sure of the answer: suppose there's a tiny crack somewhere no-one knows of and it just happens to receive enough stress while riding the stairs then you might get damage. But such things are impossible to predict. Moreover there are many other ...


13

Being aware of your weight distribution can help a lot. You want to make sure you are not leaning forward and taking pressure off of the rear tire. You can also help keep your rear tire planted by giving a slight downward twist on the handlebars with your wrists. Kind of the opposite of a bunny hop. As far as braking technique goes, try to be "progressive" ...


13

I've ridden several thousand miles a year for the past several decades, so I consider myself a skilled cyclist, or at least an experienced one. I usually (80-90% of the time) apply both brakes equally. In a downhill situation, or one where I might have to turn sharply while braking, I might use the back brake more than the front. Having had more than a few ...


12

I divide between two extremes: Riding long distance with lots of stuff on good pavement: load the bike; Riding short distance with not so much stuff and/or on rough road: load the back; Of course, there are some additional considerations: If the road is so harsh you must stand up to manoeuver (off-road, back-country, XC, etc.), load yourself. The bike ...


12

Landing on the rear wheel is a safe bet when you are not sure about the landing zone. For example a small tree root would be catastrophic if you are landing with both wheel. What happens is that since the downwards force from the fall is applied to both wheels, it is much harder to roll over the obstacle. If the front wheel cannot roll over, you basically ...


11

Simple answer is no. I do mountain trail riding and depending on the terrain I would say that the results may vary. How ever I would say that with my style of riding, I do use my front brakes 95% or more. The main reason why I use front brakes that much is because of the control you maintain. Depending on where your center of mass "hovers" over your bike, ...


11

As for during "How can I minimize the chance of getting a puncture while driving through glass?" Coast and distribute your weight evenly. Don't brake - it will grind the glass in. If you think you can clear it then hop it - be sure you can clear it with both tires. And a hop - not a bunny hop - a bunny hop is for height not distance. There is lot you can ...


11

Short answer: yes, there is a way to do it. I fully support Mσᶎ's answer and have more to say than will fit in comments. Firstly, regarding the original premise. You happen to look over your shoulder (or in your mirror) and see a vehicle approaching from behind, either fully in the bike lane, or close enough that they can't safely pass. If I'm riding a ...


11

The "trick" you're looking for is a side hop. It's really a variation on a bunny hop. Basically, you perform a standard bunny hop but when the handlebars and front wheel reach their zenith, you pull the front end over the obstacle while pushing them forward. The forward motion pulls the rear wheel up, as with a standard bunny hop. However, you additionally ...


11

Where should pedals be located (relative to the rider)? Wherever its most comfortable for you. It's a matter of personal preference (*). What works for person A won't necessarily work for person B, even if they have the same measurements and/or similar bikes. Your riding position relative to the pedals will change depending on the type of bike, terrain, ...


10

First, let's answer the first to questions together, as they are closely related. Does one lean with the bike? ...and... Does the bike stay more upright? Short answers are yes and yes in most cases. To elaborate, let's take a look at what you're trying to achieve when cornering. I found this image recently and I think it does a great job of ...


10

Move your weight further forward to keep the front wheel weighted. Shuffle forwards on your seat and bring your chest closer to the bars. Standing can help for the steepest parts, but can cause your rear wheel to slip on loose surfaces. The front wheel is lifting as when your bike is on a slope the wheelbase is effectively shortened, bringing your weight ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible