View Full Version : wheelies??

12-17-2006, 02:04 PM
anyone here do wheelies? i am trying to learn...i have read a lot but still cant seem to get it. i was wondering if there is a trick for women.

12-17-2006, 06:09 PM
Sandy, you might need to learn how to change gears first... ;)

12-18-2006, 07:07 AM
i know how to change gears. i just didnt know all the lingo and exactly how they work. i am riding fine. but with starting to jump i need to be able to do wheelies. i have hit one but havnet been able to since. didnt know if there was a trick for women.

12-18-2006, 07:21 AM
why should it be different for men and women? Theoretically women
should be better equipped to do wheelies because most of our weight
is low in our hips and men have big heavy shoulders.
I think the main "trick" is balance and nerve. It also helps to have the right kind of bike.

12-18-2006, 07:51 AM
I'm probably not the one to talk about wheelies - cause I'm wheelie challenged! I've been riding mountain bikes forever and if I have to do a wheelie higher than a couple of inches at slow speed, I just can't seem to manage it!

Anyway, if you have a suspension fork, here is a tip. It helps to compress the fork right before you need to lift. So, put your weight quickly on the handlbars (fork) to compress it then shift your weight back and pull the front end up. The other tip is to keep pedaling as you to to lift! That's the part that seems to elude me every time!

12-18-2006, 07:56 AM
Would you wheelie women suggest learning not clipped in first vs clipped in? Obviously if not clipped in, I can bail that much easier but I would think doing it clipped in, you might "lift" with your feet and then you would have different techinque. Am I making any sense? :D

12-18-2006, 08:11 AM
Yep, It is easier to jump the bike clipped in for sure. You can lift the bike. I myself am lost anymore when I am not clipped in on a mountain bike

12-21-2006, 09:36 PM
I am watching this thread carefully for any good tips. :rolleyes:

This is one thing I would love to be able to do.

I have a back problem, so I guess I am always concerned at trying to pull the front of the bike up.

Good luck anyway.


12-21-2006, 10:06 PM
It is easier if you learn by watching and practicing with the trainer. I went to mtb clinics where experienced riders (pro racers) showed us how to jump on a bike, go over the obstacles, ride stairs and... do wheelies. I guess I am fortunate because I am in California where I could learn from gals like Marla Streb and MTBChick.com Tonya Bray. But you must have some kind of mtb trainers in your area too! If not here is Tonya's web site: http://www.mtbchick.com/tonya.html
It would be fun vacation, right? Oh, and you should definitively do wheelies clipped in!


12-27-2006, 11:24 AM
Ahhhh, the elusive Wheelie. I don't know anything specific for women but I can share what I've learned ...

Before I continue -- I agree with Danulsa, the best way to learn is by watching and being taught. A good teacher can save many hours of pain!!!

Also -- there are some good sites out there that actual have videos -- this may help too!

1. It's all about balance. Don't try to use your strong arms to HOLD the bike up. My girlfriends and I spent countless hours holding our bikes up with our arms. All we got were sore arms and pseudo wheelies that lasted for maybe 2 seconds.

2. Learn somewhere with a soft landing spot -- grass works. you will go past the balance point -- you actually kind of have to, in order to figure out where the balance point is for YOU. Every body is built differently with weight proportioned out in different spots ... find your own sweet spot.

3. You might want to get some bike balancing in before trying a wheelie. It helps. Try balancing in one spot, while keeping the bike as still as possible. If you have good balance before going up in the air, you have a better chance of staying up there.

4. Don't be scared of falling!!! If you are doing it somewhere with a soft landing spot, falling won't hurt that much and you can have a good laugh while you are down there. AND of course -- wear a helmet!!!

And finally, here are some thoughts on how to get the bike up:
- put the bike in a medium gear
- start rolling
- push down on the crank and pull back slightly to get the front end up ... this pull is just slight and is not what keeps the wheelie in place.
- lean back right away (this is where you might fall over backwards). Lean your whole body back. If you like physics, think aobut how you need to be positioned in order to balance. Trust your rear break (or fall backwards!). How much you lean and break depends on your weight, the weight of your bike, and how low your saddle is. It might help to lower the saddle.

hmmm ... re-reading this, there isn't much that is women specific here. The whole balancing thing vereus pulling thing is what helped me and my girlfriends .. it was our major mistake. Maybe that will help?


12-29-2006, 07:30 AM
Thanks Dirty Girl 1: As soon as the snow melts a bit; I'm taking my girlfriends to the field at NAU and practicing! Maybe I can teach my wheelie challenged genes to wheelie!

12-31-2006, 09:15 AM
All of what dirtygirl said with one clarification that helped me a lot, even though I'm not super good at wheelies.

The pull up that worked for me is more like a row. The muscles involved are my lats, so think of doing a row with bent elbows, and pull your elbows back. Before that, every time I tried my arms were totally straight and it didn't work at all....bend the elbows and pull your elbows back, along with the right pedal placement, right gear ratio, right timing of the pedal stroke, and voila! The front wheel is in the air!

Good luck and happy practicing!

01-01-2007, 06:06 PM
hi everyone, tonya from mtbchick.com here just wanting to make sure everyone has a safe and successful wheelie experience!

1- in order to keep from falling backwards, do not pull back on your handlebars
2- in order to keep from falling backwards tip #2- your rear brake will drop your front wheel, so... if you feel you are going too far back, just tap your rear brake
3- absolutely NO upper body strength is required to ride a wheelie
4- you are simply diverting energy, instead of the bike moving forward alone, you are diverting the energy up.
5- try to ride in an easy gear from a very slow pace to start
6- a wheelie can be ridden on any type of bike, it does not require a nice bike. you can even ride a wheelie on a road bike!
7- you can do it!!!!!

01-03-2007, 01:32 PM
Yea, right, try a wheelie on an Xtracycle :) http://www.rideyourbike.com/images/customers/tacybigelowxtracycle.jpg

01-21-2007, 05:32 AM
I've found that sometimes the mind is the only thing holding you back. It's natural for the mind to think, "don't fall off." With that warning in place, the body gets apprehensive. It won't want to find that neutral balance point.

Try intentionally "wheely-ing" too far so you dismount off the back of the bike. Bike to a flat grassy area with your helmet. Moist ground is softer yet. If you have clipless pedals, don't wear your clipless shoes. You don't want to be hindered. You can even keep one foot off the pedals all together. Find an easy gear (not necessarily the easiest), and drive the pedal down while extending your arms and leaning back. Your free foot will catch you. If you did this correctly, you are now standing with your bike on its rear wheel. If not, hopefully you picked soft ground. :)

Once you get accustomed to going too far, combine the previous posts (squishing the front tire, etc...) and continue practicing.

BTW You want to practice with at least one finger hovering over your rear brake. If you unexpectedly go too far, touch your brake and your front wheel wheel will come back down. In the past, I've received weird looks from people. It's not every day they see a biker on his back with the bike in the air. :eek:

01-21-2007, 06:50 AM
Yea, right, try a wheelie on an Xtracycle :) http://www.rideyourbike.com/images/customers/tacybigelowxtracycle.jpg

Knot *WANTS* an Xtracycle! Costco runs by bike! Able to carry full-sized bag of dog food! (someday, when I win the lottery)

No wheelies, but it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make!:D

01-22-2007, 09:55 AM
yah I want an xtracycle, too. =P
I can't wheelie. I try. I compress shocks, throw weight up and back while pedaling forward- nothing. I do it hard enough and I get a buzz on the bum from the fsking rear tire. Still nothing. ARGH.