Win a FREE Clinic Slot (and stuff) By Telling Us:

by editor on April 14, 2010

Every now and then we catch an advertisement or other image of mountain biking that’s well… off. What’s interesting about this one is that it adorns the outside of a pretty well known sports shop, one very close to the self-proclaimed “birthplace of mountain biking.” Rather than make negative comments,  we’ve got a challenge with rewards for our readers.


Bikeskills’ Jiro Nakamura spots three fundamental “rider” problems here.  We’re not going to give the answers away, but we will give you hints for the specific “don’ts” that we have in mind.

The first relates to the first thing you do before you head down hill or steep section of the trail. If you need a bit more help on that one, watch former World Champion Joe Lawwill in this steeps video and listen to what he says is the first thing he does before he before he attempts going down a steep section.




It’s actually a simultaneous move… there are two, equally important parts of this magical move when the terrain starts pointing down…. just as World Champion Greg Minnaar says in this video 

Identify this two-part move as the second of three things the guy on the wall did not do (compare the picture of Jiro above to the “how not to” at the very top of the page…)

Suppose our man on the left goes down on what sure looks to be nasty rocks…

Let’s assume that he does not go over the bars and land on his head. What should he have on that might lessen or prevent injuries?   Joe’s (middle photo) got em. Jiro’s (on the right) has got em too. Answer “have what on?” and you have our third and final rider answer. Next up: what’s wrong with this two-dimensonal bike?

Jiro thinks it’s weird too… he can’t put his fingers on just what’s up, but…

If you can name three things (we can see four, so three of the four we see…) that are missing on this bike  (click on the image above and you’ll get a jumbo view) and figure out what the three things things that are messed up with the rider (questions above) and are one the first eight people to get all the answers right, you can attend one of Jiro’s next clinics (more dates to be posted by 16 April 2010) at Camp Tamarancho or the Rockville Bike Park for FREE. You’ll also be awarded a FREE Genuine Inflator. Wait, there’s more; you’ll also receive, FREE of charge,  your choice of a couple of WTB inner tubes or a pair of their sweet lock-on grips when you show up for the clinic.

So once again, here’s what you have to answer correctly, and who you have to send the answers to:

1)  Name the three things that are wrong with the Rider (and bike adjustment) in the image at the top of the page: what’s the first thing you should do when attempting a steep section of the trail? What is the two-part movement you need to do when the trail starts pointing down? What’s a good thing to wear to help lessen or prevent injuries the rider in the image above isn’t wearing, but Jiro and Joe are?

2) Name three things (as in components, necessary parts, etc.) that are missing from his bike (same two-dimensional, wall image)

3) Send your answers to

If you get em right, are one of the first eight people to do so,  we’ll let you know and sign you up for a clinic.


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

tj mach April 20, 2010 at 10:52 am

the guy is not looking ahead, or scanning, and his body should be further towards the rear of his bike to aid in braking…that is IF he had rear brakes. it also is apparently lacking cables for the derailures, and a seatbag…for his car keys. he also doesn’t have gloves…


Elizabeth Kellerman April 24, 2010 at 1:57 am

The rider position is not ideal for riding downhill over objects. He lacks skin or arm gaurds and gloves.
His bike is a magical bike lacking brakes, brakes cables, gear brakes, front rim is warped and I swear the frame looks cracked.


Stella May 6, 2010 at 9:16 am

Hello there Bike Skills,

I love your website. I have learned a few bike skills and am working on more. I really like your teaching videos. As a result, I can ride with the boys and sometimes better. :)

So to answer your question, (and I hope it’s right.)

1. Three things wrong with the rider:
a. Body position: He is leaning too far forward (if this really happened he would fall or go over the handle bars)
b. He is not wearing protective equipment ie. gloves, leg and chin armor, elbow and arm armor
c. He is looking down, not ahead and will surely fall.
d. His seat is too high. It should be adjusted and lowered.

What’s the first thing you should do when attempting a steep section of the trail?
- get back, get low
(It lowers your centre of gravity.)

What is the two-part movement you need to do when the trail starts pointing down?
- Body separation
(hmmm … I’m not sure of this one)

What’s a good thing to wear to help lessen or prevent injuries the rider in the image above isn’t wearing, but Jiro and Joe are?
- leg and chin armor, arm and elbow armor, full face helmet

2. Name three things (as in components, necessary parts, etc.) that are missing from his bike (same two-dimensional, wall image)
a. forks – shocks
b. full suspension
c. brakes
d. Front and rear derailleurs


Josh May 25, 2010 at 6:12 am

1. Drop that saddle
2. Set yourself back, put your weight to the rear of the bike.
3. Protection baby: hands, knees, elbows, get em covered
4. Invest in a rear brake, it’ll do you the world of good and its much cheaper than surgery!


Peter June 6, 2010 at 8:52 pm

1. lower seat
2. get down and get back
3. gloves!!!!

Bonus: no brake cables. No DR cables. No front DR. No pedals? No seat post clam.


Dan Jaroch June 14, 2010 at 5:25 pm

The rider didn’t lower his seat post prior to going down hill. His weight is too far forward. Should be behind the seat. And, it looks like he’s running slicks. Also looks like he’s grabbed too much front break, resulting in a nose wheelie. Oh. AND he’s wearing spandex. haha


hot sauce June 28, 2010 at 11:17 am

i am from china…it’s the first time to know bikeskills. enha.a good website..


Aaron September 16, 2010 at 10:50 pm

1. He is leaning too far foward, he is looking straight down, his seat is too high, and no pads or full face helmet
2.theres no seat post adjustment, no rear shock, no disk brakes, no front derailleur, no rear brakes

Thank you


BTW great site love that its local


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