The best way to build up your mountain biking confidence is to start working on your own bike. Working on your bike isn’t rocket science….well truing and building wheels might be. But having the knowledge and skills to repair your bike on the work stand or on the trail will greatly increase your cycling confidence.
Think about it, if you were so worried about breaking every little thing on your bike…which causes you to slow down or not ride as hard…then you’re robbing yourself of the fullest potential a trail, your bike and your biking abilities can dish out. On the flip side of that, if you knew how to work on a busted chain, mis-shifting derailleur, flat repairs and many more…you’re more likely to go balls out on your rides.
In order for you to start building your confidence, you need to learn how to fix your bike. We offer a weekly How To called, “Thursday Tech Tips.” We started with our how to’s with regular article format, that included photos and step by step instructions. Which I may add, we have over 65 How To’s posted. We’ve recently started doing a video version of the tech tips on MtnBikeRidersTV.com. In fact we’re filming one tonight…ya its a bit late, but this one is really good.
If need more help, you can certainly talk to your LBS and see if they offer FREE clinics. Most LBS’s that I know offer basic bicycle repair sessions after the shop closes. Another great tool is to get the Video Bike Repair DVD. Those folks that created this DVD did a great job in covering things from disc brakes to bottom brackets.
Now if you don’t have access to either of the two, ask your mechanically inclined buddy to show you the ropes. Usually they’ll be happy to oblige, but sometimes a 6 pack wouldn’t hurt.
Confidence has to start with knowing every aspect of your bike. Sure knowing how to handle your bike has some value, but knowing how to fix it will bolster your over all mountain biking experience.