Tag: Seb Kemp

I crashed hard on my first attempt to ride the new 4-foot high skinny drop at Hillside MTB Park in Elk River, MN a month or so ago. I somehow had it in my head to not go too fast, that it was better to err on the slow side. And since I’m good at riding skinnies, riding it slow was not a problem, or so I thought. 22-second video:

Looking at the video, clearly visible in the slowmo segment, I not only approached the lip too slow but I didn’t use any ‘technique.’ My front wheel dropped immediately and OTB I went.

Fortunately, I was completely armored up: chest and spine protection, shoulder & elbow pads, hip and tailbone pads, knee and shin pads. Unfortunately, I was pretty shaky afterwards and decided to bail on my riding companions, L to R, Paul Hogan, Troy Sierakowski,  and Bradley Cyr:

L to R, Paul Hogan, Troy Sierakowski, and Bradley Cyr

I sustained some cracked ribs on my right side, which have pretty much healed since with no complications.

Here’s a video of Hillside’s DirtWirx trail steward Rich Omdahl riding the skinny drop on the day it was installed this past summer:

Learning to ride

I’ve started recording video of my riding to examine my attempts to get better at various mountain bike skills.  I generally prefer to showcase myself succeeding, with an occasional crash thrown in for comic effects. But I decided it might be helpful to blog my attempts to improve, especially if it includes some self-analysis as well as links to other coaching videos that I’m watching.

I first noticed instructors demonstrating ‘pumping a flat surface’ in two videos on cornering, specifically hip flexion:

Simon Lawton video

Darren Butler and Seb Kemp video
Left: See the 1:24 mark of the Pinkbike video by MTB coach Simon Lawton.
Right: See the 1:20 mark of the NSMB video by Darren Butler and Seb Kemp.

And then I discovered MTB coach Lee McCormack‘s blog posts about pumping a flat surface (here, here, and here) where there are lots of pointers and helpful discussion.  He links to a video but it’s in native .mov format on his server. Here’s the YouTube version that someone has uploaded. It’s pretty amazing to see how fast he can get going:

httpv://youtu.be/acYUcAVZlA0

He also points to how Brian Lopes applies the same pumping motion in this Pinkbike video:

Brian Lopes video
See the segments at both the 1:32 and 2:56 marks.… Read the rest

Learning to ride