As your mountain biking skills progress, you’re going to want to start pushing yourself to tackle more difficult mountain bike trails. This is when you’ll start riding off camber more.
What is riding off camber?
Off camber riding is known as riding any section where the outside edge of the trailbed is lower than the inside edge. It’s very tricky to ride off camber because the angle of the slope is falling away from your wheels.
The benefits of learning how to ride off camber is that these same skills are used while cornering. This means that these skills are very helpful in both cornering, and riding off camber sections of trails. Both of which will make you a much better mountain bike rider.
It’s extremely helpful to focus on braking, line choice, lean and pedal position.
Riding off camber technique
For better control, it’s important to do all braking before you hit the off camber section. Your traction is already limited so any tapping on the brakes while riding the off camber terrain will send your wheels sliding out from under you.
Find your line
The secret to being successful is choosing a good line. It doesn’t matter whether the section is straight. Or if you’re hitting a corner. The goal is to stay high. The terrain is naturally going to push you low so start as high as you can.
Staying high also helps you deal with the roots that often come with off camber sections. You need to hit roots straight on. Otherwise the roots will grab your tire and send it sliding. Causing you to take a nasty spill.
While cornering, be sure to make your turn early and hit the off camber section straight on.
Adjust your lean
Keep in mind that leaning is a little tricky in off cambers. You want to lean the bike slightly into the hill to get the knobs on the edge of the tire to really dig in. You want to accomplish this without leaning so far that you lose traction and slide out.
As you do this, counter-balance by moving your hips slightly away from the bike to keep your weight centered over the tires. As always, keep your hips pointed where you want to go. Where your hips go, your bike will follow.
Adjust pedal position
Remember that pedal balance is very important. You need to keep your feet evenly weighted. But still allow your inner pedal come up so it doesn’t clip the ground.
By doing this, it helps open your hips for easier leaning. If there are too many rocks and roots to deal with, a small bunny hop will help you get over the rough sections like a pro.
At first, riding off camber might seem very difficult. But with practice and patience, you’ll get much better at it. Just remember that you’ll be using the same skills as when cornering.
Don’t forget to focus on braking, line choice, lean and pedal position. When you get all those important techniques on point, you’ll be able to tackle just a bout any trail, not matter how tame or wild it is.
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