……Probably the most useful thing ever
The other day, I had a rider ask me when I learnt to bunny hop. I had to struggle to even remember- it was one of the first things I learnt, probably even before I messed around with wheelies. Bunny hops get you out of trouble- constantly, so I was surprised when this mid-20’s rider asked me; as he couldn’t yet hop.
Well, he could kind of hop using SPD pedals, which is cheating yourself really as you use a different technique, using just your feet to pull the wheels vertically off the ground.
The proper bunny hop is learnt on flat pedals- you don’t pull up on the pedals to lift the rear wheel; you only push back on them.
As you approach your obstacle to hop, lean back and pull up and back on the handlebars. As you do so stand tall and extend your legs to help pivot the bike on the rear wheel- further pushing the front wheel up. As the wheel comes up, you move your weight forwards and start flicking your feet back to scoop the bike up.
This motion is the one thing that takes a while to perfect, so practice over something soft and moveable before you try logs!
As the rear wheel starts to come up, tuck your legs up underneath you and extend your arms in front of you to get maximum extension of the bunny hop- then start to release and prepare to absorb the landing.
Sounds complicated, but really it’s quite easy.
Check out this video clip for an easy idea on how it works.
The bunny hop is the number one skill every mountain biker should know- it allows you to cover ground fast, efficiently and safely at speed. If you don’t know how to hop, then get your practice on! It’s an easy skill to learn, a little trickier to master, but the best skill you can have…