Mountain bike crashes are just so much fun aren’t they!
Watch this video of me crashing my bike just this week!
So Why Am I So Happy About Mountain Bike Crashes?
Short answer. Because I’m doing it.
I spend 40 hours a week working in a tiny cubicle in an office I highly dislike. 35 of those hours I spend dreaming about mountain biking. The other 5 hours I’m eating lunch. So to be honest I love crashing while mountain biking, because at least I’m out on the trail and enjoying it.
Does crashing while mountain biking feel good? Nope, not at all. Right now, I have a welt on the side of my face, a cut on the back of my knee and a giant bruise on my shoulder. All of which still hurt. But I take pride in each of them. I see them as victory wounds.
The Most Important Part Of Crashing
Is getting right back up.
As much as you may be hurt, 7 times out of 9 the best thing you can do is just to keep moving. Keeping your blood flowing and continuing to move helps your body to prevent swelling and cramping. The old adage of “just walk it off” also applies to mountain bike crashes, “just bike it off”.
Now, if you have hit your head, your spine or if you have any bones sticking through your flesh, then stay down and call or wait for help. Those type of injuries are completely different.
“But I’m Scared Of Crashing”
Then you’re in the wrong sport.
“The more you think about crashing, the more likely you are to have one. ^^Click To Tweet This!^^“
Mountain bike crashes happen. There’s just no way around that. It is a rule of the sport and something that will inevitably happen to you as you ride. You will crash. And if you bike long enough, chances are good that one day you will have a bad crash, the ones that really hurt or break a bone.
I don’t tell you this because I want you to crash or I’m trying to scare you away from the sport. I tell you this because it’s the truth. You can’t focus on crashing, if you do then that’s exactly what you’re going to do.
The more you think about crashing, the more likely you are to have one.
So you don’t have an option. You have to learn to prevent crashing and when it does happen deal with it properly.
Preventing Mountain Bike Crashes
“Focus on your riding, keep looking at the trail 20 feet ahead of you ^^Click To Tweet This!^^“
You just have to focus on your riding, keep looking at the trail 20 feet ahead of you. Keep focusing on braking before turns and not during them. Just relax while you’re mountain biking and enjoy the trail. Control your speed and don’t ride like a crazy man. So much of riding at a high-speed is actually all about learning how to flow with the trail and corner properly, both things that also help prevent crashes.
But again, and most importantly, look where you are going. Keep your eyes on the trail at least 20 feet ahead of your bike.
Dealing with Mountain Bike Crashes
How you deal with a mountain bike crash depends on the severity of the crash. Most crashes will just result in a few bruises, a couple cuts and some soreness the next morning. For these crashes, dust yourself off, get back on and keep riding and then clean up any cuts once you finish the trail. Most likely the only thing that really got hurt was your pride. That heals quickly, so just move forward.
Then there are the big crashes. The ones that we don’t like to talk about. Anything that results in broken bones, unconsciousness or a more severe injury like a broken bone. When these do happen and i’m praying they don’t… Here are some tips.
- Ride with a partner
- Carry a cellphone
- Bring a small first aid kit
- Use a RoadID just in case you can’t respond (unconscious, delirious, etc.)
- If you hit your head, neck or spine don’t move. Call an ambulance and wait
Share your stories about crashing or tips for preventing a crash in the comments below.
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