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Braking is one of the basic skills to maintain balance and stability on the bicycle.

Braking is not only squeezing the brake levers, but also the position of the fingers on the brake, and the position of the body on the bike to absorb the forward force.


When braking, the  looking technique is also very important, exploring the terrain for obstacles, and relief. Which direction do I want to steer my bike (rear wheel drifting).


Sometimes mountain bikers go wrong because they ride too slowly. You drive more safely at a higher speed. Therefore, make sure you have sufficient speed and know how to brake properly.

Drive safer with sufficient speed

It sounds strange, but sometimes mountain bikers go wrong because they ride too slowly. Some actions work out better at a slightly higher speed. With a higher speed you can easily take smaller obstacles. You don't have to make adjustments so you lose speed. This makes it more likely that you will maintain control over the wheel. So just drive over a (not too high) obstacle. A fast bike is often a more stable bike.

Tips for good braking

  • When braking, put the most force on your rear brake.

  • Use your front brake to brake, and never use it alone. The chance that you hit the head is a lot higher.

  • When using 'forceful braking', always lean slightly behind your saddle.

  • Avoid an overheated brake. It no longer brakes. Therefore, do not brake continuously, but regularly and lightly in order to control your speed.

  • Braking in a corner is not (always) wise (sometimes you can get through a corner faster with it).


When braking, you put most of the force on the rear brake. You use the front brake to brake. If you only use the front brake, you are much more likely to flip over. To prevent overheating during long descents, you do not brake permanently, but regularly lightly to control the speed. One final note: braking in a corner is not a good idea.

In normal conditions (flat dry terrain) you have the most braking power on your front wheel. The ratio in this case is 70:30, if the terrain becomes slippery then the ratio is 50:50!

Downhill you evolve to 0:100, by only braking at the rear your bike remains stable and slides down as it were.


Tip! You only have maximum braking range with a rolling wheel, so prevent your wheel from locking and dragging!




Nose wheelies

Braking on level ground and moving body backwards.

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