How to Improve Your Pump Track Riding Skills

Can you feel it? Spring is finally here! The days are getting longer and warmer, and more and more people are getting back on their bikes, scooters, skates, … The pump tracks and trails are filling up with motivated riders, and staying safe out there is important. By being technically secure, we can avoid accidents and enjoy our time on the pump track even more. That’s why we decided to focus on the topic of safety, this time from the perspective of “How to be a better rider”.

We invited Bike School Pekoll to back us up on this important topic. In our first article, you can read all about the safety equipment you should use when using a pump track and of course, there is also a list of recommended equipment. And here we are, we’ve got the second part for you – the basics of how to become a pro on the pump track!

At Alliance Pump Tracks, safety is our top priority. Our pump tracks are designed and built to the highest safety standards and comply with all relevant regulations and guidelines. So you can enjoy your ride without worry!

Mastering the Basics: Nail Your Riding Technique with the Right Bike Position

Now that we have covered the importance of having the right gear for riding a pump track in our first “Back to School” blog post, it’s time to get down to the basics of riding techniques. And it all starts with your basic position on the bike – the foundation for all your movements. To get you off to a great start, we’ll give you our top tips on how to sit or stand correctly on your bike. Whether you are a beginner or looking to brush up on your skills, mastering the basic position is key to improving your riding technique.

So, let us dive in and explore the basic position on your bike! Remember, this is only the first step in developing your riding skills, but it is an essential one. Get ready to take your riding to the next level!

Get Your Basic Bike Position Right

  • Keep your pedals parallel
  • Place your feet fully on the pedals
  • Keep your legs almost straight, with a slight bend in your knees
  • Build trunk tension and lean your upper body forward
  • Keep your hands loose on the handlebars
  • Turn your elbows slightly outward
  • Always put your thumb under the handle
  • Place a finger on the brake
  • Look far ahead
Basic position / Photo: Klemens König

Why why why? Time to explain the individual points.

1. Keep your pedals parallel

Keeping your pedals parallel has numerous benefits, such as a stable riding position and building better trunk tension. It’s also practical because it prevents your pedals from getting caught anywhere. But what about the foot position? According to the experts at Bike School Pekoll, it’s best to put your dominant foot on the front pedal. If you are familiar with skateboarding or snowboarding, think about which foot you naturally put forward when gliding on slick surfaces.

2. Place your feet fully on the pedals

Want to maximize your power and grip while riding? Make sure you are standing firmly on the pedals! This will ensure optimal power transfer through your feet and keep your shoes securely in place. To do this, position your big toe joint about level with the pedal axle and place most of your shoe surface on the pedal. Also, lower your heels slightly to build body tension and increase your grip on the pedals. With these tips, you’ll be pedaling around the track like a pro in no time!

3. Keep your legs almost straight, with a slight bend in your knees

To build up good basic tension and ensure safe riding on the pump tracks, start by standing on the bike with your legs outstretched. This creates the tension we need to ride with confidence, from foot to hip. In addition, a secure footing allows us to make the most of our range of motion when pumping. Once you are in the right position, remember to relax your knees slightly. This will help maintain balance and stability while riding.

4. Build trunk tension and lean your upper body forward

Maintaining a stable upper body is crucial for safe riding. Not only does it take pressure off your hands, but it also helps transfer forces to the bike more efficiently, resulting in better grip when cornering or jumping. Keep your back straight and avoid forming a hollow back or a rounded back.

To maintain a central posture on the bike, imagine a vertical line from your belly button to the ground that should go through the bottom bracket of the bike. This will help you distribute your weight evenly and keep your balance on the bike.

One finger on the brake while looking ahead: This is how you take curves optimally.

5. Keep your hands loose on the handlebars

When it comes to controlling your bike, your hands play a crucial role. However, they should not be used to stabilize your body. Instead, loosen your grip and allow for more natural steering. This will allow you to move more freely on your bike while improving your overall control.

6. Turn your elbows slightly outward

To maximize power transfer to the bike when riding on the pump track and to have more freedom of movement when cornering, try turning your elbows slightly outward. This posture can be compared to that of a gorilla or a push-up position. By doing so, you can ride the track more dynamically and efficiently.

7. Always put your thumb under the handle

Keeping your hands firmly on the handlebars is crucial for safe riding. To prevent your hands from slipping forward, make sure your thumbs stay under the grip. This may seem like a small detail, but it can make a big difference when it comes to maintaining control of your bike.

8. Place a finger on the brake

Always ready! Always keep one finger on the brake lever for quick access. This way you have four fingers to grip the handlebars and maintain control of the bike while still being ready to brake at a moment’s notice.

9. Look far ahead

Being an anticipatory rider is not just essential for riding, but it’s also important for staying safe on routes with curves, rollers, or jumps. By anticipating potential hazards, you can react accordingly and keep yourself and others safe. An added benefit of the anticipatory rider is that you can keep your back straight, which contributes to better posture and reduces the risk of injuries.

Look far ahead. / Photo: Klemens König

Practice: How to do it

To master the basic posture tips, you can practice against a wall or with a friend holding the bike for you. Start by standing still and then gradually progress to rolling on a flat surface. Once you have mastered that, it’s time to take it to the pump track. There you can challenge yourself by balancing the waves using only your arms. If you want to learn more about how to become a pump track pro with advanced techniques, stay tuned for the next article!

Pump tracks: safe&fun for all rolling sports equipment

Riding a pump track is not just for bike enthusiasts! It’s a fun and safe way to enhance your skills on any type of rolling sports equipment.

Don’t have a pump track nearby? Don’t worry, we’re here to help! Get in touch with us and we’ll work together to create the perfect sports facility for your community.