Doing It In The Dirt: Riding Off Road
- How to ride up and down hills
- How to ride over obstacles
- Riding on dirt
After strapping on your motorbike gloves, many riders started out riding off road…we taught ourselves how to ride. Riding dirt bikes is awesome. Dirt bike riding is thrilling.
- Always wear the correct safety equipment. Motorcycle gloves are essential. So is a helmet and goggles. Full face, body armour, kneepads and boots will always cushion the fall. Using off-road skills to improve your on-road performance
When you ride off-road you immediately remove the No.1 hazard…other drivers!
And dirt is more forgiving than asphalt.
When riding off-road there are a lot more rocks, ruts, holes than the relatively smooth surface of city streets.
Riding off-road hones your skills for riding on the road and inevitably makes you a better road racer. Off-road riding makes you a better racer. Because you are going to encounter different surface conditions, you will reach a higher level of skill. You will need to use your motorcycle gloves to obtain a smoother level of throttle to help you clear those obstacles, and inevitably steer the bike.
Balance is crucial to dirt bike riding. Dirt bikes are generally very light and body movement helps to steer them. Getting physical is important with your dirt bike. The proper posture for going up a hill is different than going down.
Control of motorcycle gloves on the throttle is paramount. The surface conditions vary:- sand, mud, rocks. These surfaces have one thing in common which is called low-traction. Low-traction riding improves your street-riding skills. On the street when your rear tire loses traction and then regains traction, the bike will pitch in the opposite direction. You can control this by using smooth action with your motorcycle gloves on the throttle.
The proper set-up for off-road riding is:-
- Handlebars…they should be wider than your shoulders. They should not obstruct your legs or knees.
- Levers…should be positioned in such a way that your arms and wrists form a direct line with your levers.
- Grips…they should be glued or wired to avoid them slipping. Replace when worn.
- Rear brake and gearshift…should be adjusted to sit parallel with the ground.
- Tire pressure…11-14 psi.
- Foot pegs…the angle of the foot peg is vital. They need to sit up so you can lock your knees around the tank, which makes you go fast!
Go for it!