Transitioning from Road to Dirt Biking

Biking pic

Robert Anthony Nolan has worked in the field of aviation for more than 30 years, currently residing in Virginia Beach, VA. Along with his passion for flight and aviation, Robert Nolan enjoys various outdoor activities, including both snow & water skiing, scuba diving, power parachuting, whitewater rafting, horseback riding and mountain biking in VA, MD & NC. He can be found riding the “Cape Henry Trail” located within Seashore State Park that he incorporates into his local 28 mile ride. He also participates in Century Rides (cycling rides of 100 miles) in such events as the Seagull Century and Tour De Cure for the American Diabetes Association.

Those who start mountain biking after years of traditional road biking need to learn many new skills and unlearn some habits before transitioning to dirt. These tips will help new bikers get started.

Mountain bikers must be more aware of the positions of their bodies. Unlike road biking, which involves minimal adjustment of body position, mountain biking requires body weight to be shifted back during descents and forward during climbs. Likewise, mountain bikers must accept greater instability on the bike, and avoid over-correction.

Care and maintenance also requires significant adjustment. Mountain bikes are designed to take significantly higher punishment than road bikes and will often rack up cosmetic damage. Road bikers should accept that mountain bikes are unlikely to come back from rides far from clean and pristine condition, but in exchange enjoy significantly higher durability.