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Discussion Starter #1
Ok MXers, I'm still getting comfortable going 20-40 mph on flat ground, and the thought of launching into the air at speed brings instant visions of mangled bodies (mine).

I found what might be a nice place to ride, but they have a ton of jumps around the entire course, and riding around all of them doesn't seem to good either.

I plan on getting more seat time on more open ground, and then try to work my way up, but the one riding area that I can do that now has hunters hunting there, so I'm not getting to ride there like I'd like to.

How did you get use to jumping? And how many times did you crash before you got the hang of it?
 

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uummm . . . you don't have to crash to learn how to jump. It's actually frowned upon :D I think in all of my umpteen years of riding a dirtbike, I've only fallen hard from a jump once, & that one wasn't even my fault. Staying within your comfort zone is where it's at.

You don't have to go around the jumps on the course, just roll over them very slowly. After a while, you will able to gradually increase your speed until "holy shit - I'm airborne". It might only be a foot, but it'll feel like a mile. You might only get a couple of inches this year - maybe a foot or two next year, etc. Don't rush it, and don't feel you have to be 20 feet up in the air to have a good time on a dirt bike.
 

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Krabill said:
uummm . . . you don't have to crash to learn how to jump. It's actually frowned upon :D I think in all of my umpteen years of riding a dirtbike, I've only fallen hard from a jump once, & that one wasn't even my fault. Staying within your comfort zone is where it's at.

You don't have to go around the jumps on the course, just roll over them very slowly. After a while, you will able to gradually increase your speed until "holy shit - I'm airborne". It might only be a foot, but it'll feel like a mile. You might only get a couple of inches this year - maybe a foot or two next year, etc. Don't rush it, and don't feel you have to be 20 feet up in the air to have a good time on a dirt bike.
I couldnt have said it better my self, but when you get there its a rush!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Funny, I was trying to go slow, but willing to jump a little, first lap, qtr of the way into it, I'm going down this hill, and of course there's a jump at the bottom, and I say to myself, self you can go over this:D
Up the ramp, a little air, But it's a double (more like 2 3 foot whoops really) Going fast enough to get air, but only enough to plant the front wheel into the middle of the second ramp. I didn't go over the bars, managed to not crash, but did end up in the small pond right next to it, up to my ankles in mucky water and pointed in the wrong direction.

That was when I decided that that wasn't much fun:D
 

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All I can say is SLOW DOWN :redflip If you're heading downhill . . . downshift.

Really . . . the most important thing is to stay in control. If you have to go at a granny's pace to begin with, so be it. It will come eventually. Just have fun while you're doing it :D
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I was going slow lol, probably 2nd maybe 1st gear, and on the brakes most of the way down, it was just going to fast to stay on the ground, but not going fast enough to clear the second rise.
Probably funny to watch too!
 

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Pitch/Roll

Okay, this isn't so much about roll, but PITCH is what screws up most people as they are trying to acquire their wings. When you are in the air, the dirtbike is going to do whatever you told it to do when you last left the ground, just with more enthusiasm. If you are HARD on the gas when you leave the face of a jump, even if you're not going all that fast, you're going to put the nose WAY up. If you are HARD on the brakes or chop the throttle off on the face of the jump, you're going to be heading nose-first into whatever's right after the jump. The idea is to just 'roll' over the jump. Go up to the jump at a steady speed, with the suspension settled, and with your body ready to rock forward or backward on the bike to correct or 'talk' the bike into leveling itself in the air. Like the others said, just roll over the jumps slowly until you find out what speed is needed to get just the front wheel off the ground over it, then just work on going fast enough to get both wheels off the ground a couple of inches over it, then work on clearing the back of the jump, then work on your landing, then worry about clearing the 10' gap between the double....

Phil
 

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If you carry a gear too high over the jump, it won't be as sensitive to throttle position as you'll be low in the RPM range. But the key is to not chop the throttle, going over the bars is much worse than looping it, trust me.;)

If you are in the air nose down, gas it, it will bring the wheel up. This is commonly called a "panic rev". If your front wheel is high, pull in the clutch and tap the rear brake, it will bring it down.

Of course this all assumes you'll be landing on relatively flat ground...
 

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I know this probably goes without saying, but ALWAYS grip the bike with your legs when learning to jump! Nothing worse than finally working up the nerve to launch it and find yourself doing freestyle moves by accident! Don't ask how I know this!:redflip
 

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Start small.

Get the feel of what it feels like to be airborn.

Then work your way up.

Like Phil said, there's technique, but you wont know how to apply it until you get the bike in the air.

You wont get the bike in the air until you feel safe.

You wont feel safe going big.

So start small.

Then work your way up.


nm8
 

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I've recently (as in, this past weekend) started dirt riding myself.
I liked it so much that first day on my friend's DRZ400e that I had to go get my own bike.
I have to say, I got brave really early on and tried a few jumps on the MX course. It's pretty intimidating when you realize that getting it into the air is the easy part....what to do with it once you have it there is tougher.
I didn't crash it at all getting air, but my landings were definitely not graceful...in fact, the second day I had both almost-off-the-pegs, and almost-over-the-bars experiences.

Obviously, since I'm so new at it, I need to take animator's advice and work on my technique before I get too ambitious.
Also, Phil's advice is excellent... it actually helped me figure out some of the things I was doing wrong.

Good luck and be safe!

--Greg
 
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