How to Mountain Bike Downhill
Steep downhill trails may be daunting to the novice mountain biker. However, if you position your body properly and relax, you can descend just about anything.
1. Practice starting and stopping on gradual hills to become acquainted with your bike.
2. Brake primarily with your rear brake. Lightly press your brake in and out, called "fluttering," instead of slamming it down.
3. Flutter front and rear brakes in steep spots.
4. Relax. Keep your legs and arms loose as you descend to absorb the bumps smoothly.
5. Keep your weight on your pedals, not the seat. Suspend your rear end over the seat to avoid unexpected jolts.
6. Keep your weight back on steep hills.
7. Use the momentum of your speed to fly over smaller rocks and roots once you become more comfortable.
Tips: If you want to tackle a challenging hill, walk it first and plan your line of descent.
Focus on your line of travel by looking 20 to 40 feet ahead. Look for a path around obstacles such as logs or rocks. Fixating on obstacles can cause you to bike into them.
Warnings: Slamming on your front brake usually results in a face plant.
Wear a helmet.