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Topic: Repository of dirt riding technique?  (Read 13725 times)

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Tyrroneous
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« on: September 17, 2013, 01:36:47 pm »

This past saturday I loaded up my new to me XR400R and headed to Trace State Park for my initiation into the brotherhood of off-road bikers (b.o.o.b  Lol  ).  2.5 hours later and I was beat up, bruised, bloodied and had a freakin' huge smile on my face.  Most of the time, I just stayed on the gas and hoped the mighty torque of the XR would get me out of trouble.  It worked most of the time.  However, I'm sure I'm doing it all wrong.  And as I was out there by myself, I didn't have anybody to correct me.  

I'm hoping somebody out there has compiled some tips for off road riding.  How to handle sandy trails, trails with nasty roots/rocks, hill climbs, hill descents with deep ruts, etc...

http://i141.photobucket.com/albums/r70/tyrroneous/ElDiabloRojo.jpg
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« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2013, 01:38:53 pm »

When in doubt gas it
its all in your head


that's all I got Bigsmile
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« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2013, 01:53:29 pm »

Shane Watts has a series of instructional "DirtWise" DVDs and he travels around the country giving clinics. I have the full DVD set. Problem is, you have to practice the drills, but generally have no one there to provide feedback on how you're doing (short of noticing a lack of crashes, near misses, and being less exhausted).

http://www.ShaneWatts.com

My tips:

Stand Up unless the trail is really smooth
Look farther down the trail, not at your front wheel
Try to stay relaxed
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« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2013, 01:54:00 pm »

Don't ride in deep sand on Distanzas.

look for things to treat as a berm to help turning.

Ride with younger people who will pick your bike up off your leg.
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« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2013, 03:33:29 pm »

+1 When in doubt, gas it.

Keep your elbows up.

Stand up with knees slightly bent.

Cover all the controls all the time.

Don't ride alone.
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R Doug
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2013, 04:08:36 pm »


When in doubt gas it



+1 When in doubt, gas it.

Keep your elbows up.

Stand up with knees slightly bent.

Cover all the controls all the time.

Don't ride alone.



I've watched the Shane Watts DVD and took a two day off road class with Jimmy Lewis and Cornerspin with Aaron Stevenson.  More gas solves most of the problems you'll face.   Lol

In all seriousness,  there were two key takeaways for me from the classes:

1)  When the front end wants to push in a corner and bike doesn't want to turn, gas it.  

This really came into light for me during a course which the instructor intentionally had us go through where there was a downhill, off camber, left handed turn.  the more you gassed it through the corner, the better the bike would go through it.

2)   The control of the bike is 90% by your core (upper legs and abs).  If you find that you're trying to manhandle the bike with your shoulders and arms, you're doing it wrong.  

This really came into light for me during a drill where we had to get the bikes going in a circle via a drift with the rear wheel spinning and we were only allowed to use one hand on the bars.  The other hand was to be placed on the gas tank.  You quickly learned that minimum bar input is needed and you’re controlling the bike with your lower body.  
« Last Edit: September 17, 2013, 04:59:32 pm by R Doug » Logged
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2013, 04:19:34 pm »

Go get on a 125 cc and practice practice practice bike control.  Elbows up was another big theme from both schools.  Here you can see my elbows are up, I'm heavily gassing it out of the corner, and I'm steeting with my lower body.

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2012/Cornerspeed/DSC_1384.jpg

From Watts and Lewis...

Practice the following often, they do:

Stoppies and Wheelies for bike control

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126744037-2-WebLarge_0_a69633592a037404f68695299d8c519b_1.jpg


http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126741245-2-WebLarge_0_c9439dee49f290b1d72fe214ca993a75_1.jpg



Slow speed corning maneuvers using your body as counterweight


http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126736326-2-WebLarge_0_3c865a1aa355ab779b4b659690651ec9_1.jpg

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126739048-2-WebLarge_0_14f94c5457117bf2e50179b584d39064_1.jpg


Gassing it is not the answer when you stall on a hill.  Learn clutch and throttle control.

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126823440-2-WebLarge_0_d02f4a4c7c5a9120ad2f1f7fc1e3de24_1.jpg


Gassing it is ALWAYS the option in sand.  Stupid Sand.   Lol

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c132/doog71/Motorcycle%20Rides/2011/Jimmy%20Lewis%20School/Image-3784232-126786561-2-WebLarge_0_cff081c06159e333b319b1fd9327141f_1.jpg

« Last Edit: September 17, 2013, 04:35:15 pm by R Doug » Logged
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« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2013, 04:29:46 pm »

Sand.

Huh

Good God y'all

What is it GOOD for

Absolutely NUTHIN

Say it again, Ohhhh
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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2013, 05:01:31 pm »

best time I ever had on my 990 was in the sand near Moab. 3rd gear pinned and it was just like water skiing Bigsmile
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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2013, 06:16:53 pm »

Thumpertalk has a pretty good section on wood riding techniques, etc.

In rocky terrain more speed to get the suspension working for you helps smooth things out and keep the bike tracking true - to a point...  Crazy
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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2013, 08:29:41 pm »


+1 When in doubt, gas it.

Keep your elbows up.

Stand up with knees slightly bent.

Cover all the controls all the time.

Don't ride alone.



That pretty much is it.

The only things I would add is:
  • You can sit on smooth dirt but the rougher it  gets, the more you need to stand.
  • Look where you want to go, not at what's in front of you, and you'll go right to it.
  • Apply the brakes gradually
  • Apply the rear brake first, then the front. If the front locks, the bike will slide out from under you
  • hold the handlebars loosely, no death grip (see next bullet).
  • When standing steer with your feet, not your hands, by taking the weight off the opposite peg. (If you want to go right, lift your left foot off the left peg, The bike will go right automatically with a loose grip on the bars)




All the tips in this thread and more are demonstrated in this:

http://www.dualsportriding.com/products/dualsport-riding-techniques-dvd

It's well worth the money.

« Last Edit: September 17, 2013, 08:37:26 pm by DangerMoney » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2013, 08:46:55 pm »

Practice balancing techniques by doing slow speed (1st gear at idle) figure 8's. Use counterbalancing.

Always weight your outside peg. If your turning right, place your weight on the left peg, and conversely if you are turning left, weight your right peg.

Always look up, and look to where you want to go.

Elbows up and stay loose. Loosen up the death grip on your handlebars.

In sand, get up on your foot pegs on the balls of your feet, slightly bend your knees, give it the gas and keep your speed up.

Speed is your friend in sand. Think a boat that is planed out on a lake. If the boat cuts the throttle, the bow dives down. Same thing with your bike. Except this will place a load on your front tire in soft sand, and you will likely crash.

Michelin S12 tires are the best for sand and soft ground.

Practice, practice, practice! And enjoy. I love riding in the dirt. Also look up MXTV on You Tube. Lots of helpful videos.

http://i474.photobucket.com/albums/rr106/ack535/DSC00929.jpg
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« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2013, 07:43:11 pm »




I'm hoping somebody out there has compiled some tips for off road riding.  How to handle sandy trails, trails with nasty roots/rocks, hill climbs, hill descents with deep ruts, etc...



You asked for it, you got it!

http://www.bestrestproducts.com/p-341-how-to-ride-off-road-free-download.aspx
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« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2013, 10:59:41 am »

Good stuff y'all!   Thumbsup  Can't wait to try out some of these techniques next time I hit the trails.

DangerMonkey, that free book is awesome.  Thanks for the link.
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« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2014, 11:32:43 am »

Ibuprofen for afterwards.   Lol

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« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2014, 01:10:57 pm »


Ibuprofen for afterwards.   Lol




 Bigok Lol
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« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2014, 10:55:20 am »

stand up.  if you sit down, stand up again.  let the bike move and flow under you while you are standing.  If you sit, the bike will bounce you around.  when you stand, your legs will absorb the bike bouncing/moving under you and let you keep going.
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