Sandy Ridge is one of our favorite trails to ride, session and teach at. The wide variety of trails and features offer tons of opportunity to dial in and implement new skills and maneuvers.
The flow trails are packed with bermed turns, rollers and other features, and the best part is the lower trails are often empty, meaning we don’t have to pedal far to get practice time in.
Our “Intro to Flow” program focuses on body position and pressure control, which helps riders increase their balance and stability on the trail. Adding pressure and loading our suspension, bike, wheels and tires helps us stay planted and equals maximum traction and fun in the turns!
We start learning new body movements off the bike, shifting to basic drills on pavement to practicing implementing the new skills. Our focus is on creating good habits and teaching our bodies new movements with the goal of getting them into our muscle memory.
Good form on pavement translates to good form on the trail! And you can never get too low.
Line choice plays a big part into how we have to position ourselves in corners. We avoid preaching a “right or wrong” instead focusing on “cause and effect”. And of course, sometimes it’s fun to take the inside line and practice the lines that are “not as ideal”.
The “attack” or “ready” position is the foundation of our course and everything we teach. It doesn’t just apply to rollers and berms either, as we transition from the ready position to a more rearward implementation to lift the front wheel. While there are a number of ways a rider and lift the front wheel over obstacles, since we only have a few hours to work with you, we focus on building the movements that can scale into the next progression.
For example: Front wheel lift > Manual > J-hop (we’ll save this for a post of it’s own!)
While we cover the manual and j-hop, our focus is on negotiating all the rollers and table top features at Sandy. One of our favorite trails to lead riders down is Little Monkey, which for many riders is new to them. (if you haven’t ridden it yet, check it out, it’s a blast!)
The table tops and rollers offer the opportunities to take to the air. This being our Intro to Flow class, airtime isn’t the goal; (and in fact is discouraged during this session – it’s better to learn to run before you learn to fly) control and negotiating these features safely is. Applying the a low center of gravity and the ready position and adding weight shifts give us the ability to stay centered and in control.