Jump to content

scooterspal

Starting out in trials... how to practice the basics?

Recommended Posts

I've just purchased a very decent condition Gas Gas Contact JTR160 trials bike to try and learn the sport on. I've made some feeble attempts to learn with my Honda TRL200 but find the 4-stroke with the engine braking throws me off. I do not have that issue now with this 2 stroke.

I've been a checker at a local event for the last five years so I understand the concept of trials. Watched tons of YouTube videos, too.

My question is, how to begin from scratch?

If you were just starting out, all over again, what would be your plan of attack and how would begin to practice?

Thanks.

bike.jpg

Edited by scooterspal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

You can practice basic skills almost anywhere. Do tight figures-of-eight. Lay out a line of markers as a slalom and keep moving them closer. Put down a small obstacle and practice hopping the front wheel over it. Then add in something before and after so you have to turn tightly onto it and after it.When you go to practice on some proper trials terrain, try to have someone with you. You're more likely to push yourself if there's someone to pick the bike off you when it all goes wrong.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Do as trapezeartist said but practice every move until you can relax your arm and leg muscles doing them.

Guy 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
 

Initially, nothing beats spending as much time as you can just riding the bike, playing about and learning how the bike reacts to your input.  All the rest comes later.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Can even get some improving in when it's dark outside: static balancing in the garage. Build up from balancing on one steering lock to doing it on the other side, then with the handlebars in a more straight-ahead position, and without holding the brake on. For a further challenge, inflate the tyres a bit.

 

Edited by cleanorbust
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Once you have the basics of control, practice is much more productive if you put markers down to force you to make that turn rather than just playing about.

Edited by 2stroke4stroke
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
15 hours ago, section swept said:

Ask some of those riders you’ve been checking for 5 years to invest some time back to give you some help and advice. Oh yes and keep that clean bike clean.🙂

It was one of those riders who suggested I forget about the Honda and look for an under 200cc more "modern" trials bike. That's how I came to buy this 1996 Gas Gas 160cc. My issue right now is balance. Something you take for granted when young you lose as you get older. The reason so many older folks fall and then that's it for them. At near 65 I'd rather not become one of those. I can practice getting that back using a balance board I made.

Edited by scooterspal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Best thing I found for ballance practice was slow riding on a bicycle, standing on the pedals also helps with leg strength (since most people aren't used to keeping their knees bent for long periods)

 

And yes, a 160cc Gasgas is really good for getting started on - my first trials bike was a 2004 125 Gasgas and it was a very forgiving ride :)

Edited by turbofurball
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

#1, you live in a great area for trials. There are lots of folks nearby who are absolutely eager to have you join the ranks of trials riders. #2, with regard to balance I figured out pretty quickly that the only solution for getting better at balance was time on the bike. I tried the balance board, standing on one leg, riding my bike slowly, calisthenics all of that and it didn't seem to make one bit of difference other than improving my overall fitness, which is always helpful. What helped was a few local club members getting me on their bikes, engine off with the wheel turned all the way and they put their boots on either side of the front tire. As I would be trying to balance the person would say "more on your left, more on your right, a whole lot on your left etc.". That gave me the basics to where I wasn't leaning as much on their feet but eventually I just had to get on the bike, get comfortable with how sensitive the throttle was and just practice.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Not to thread hijack, but I'm in a similiar position and I'm keen on opinions of more experienced riders. 

I've just ordered a 2019 TXT280 to try trials. I've been wanting to do it for nearly 10 years. I've competed in most other motorcycling disciplines.

I'm curious where to start? What resources to study up on, what to learn etc...

Edited by JJ58

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

A TXT Pro 280 is a serious machine (though I know people have said it's more mellow now than it used to be); consider getting a flywheel weight and slow throttle for it to begin with (before it gets fired off into the top of a tree by accident) ... for context, I go in the A class at track days, have been riding for over 30 years now, and my 1980 TY175 has a good amount of power now I've been doing trials for a couple of years.

Where to start - go to a trials school, or a casual / novice / "really easy" event.  I found an understanding experienced rider to babysit me at a local fun trial for my first time on a trials bike, and after that a willing volunteer at a local club helped me through my first few competitions - in fact loads of other riders and observers have been wonderful and are why I'm still doing this :)

This youtube channel is a good place to look for tips, though having a little experience helps give it context

  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Practice, practice, practice.... I’m 1y in and still not great at static balancing, can stop briefly and go using the clutch to help, can’t balance and hop about... but can get about ok.  Those WATC videos are great, like the guys said, set yourself little objectives each time.  I’m going to practice static balancing more in the garden.  

I’ve loved it and it’s helped my riding so much (apart from riding on the track with one finger on either lever from also doing enduro :D), especially enduro/off-road, after I broke my hand it was the only bike I could ride for a while... still a bit away from jumping stuff like I did before then but getting there again. Was out today for an hour, second time in as many weeks after a month off waiting for parts (but been on track/off-road in between), and it was all coming back to me and I really enjoyed trying to go as slow and as tricky as I could. 

Find a club/other experienced riders to push you on once you have confidence in the basics. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...