So your friend convinced you to give it a go and now your hooked. Woohoo! Congratulations! Welcome to the wonderful, occasionally painful, but always fun, world of mountain biking. We're glad you're here. We know what it's like when you first start out, there are so many things to remember, so many new things to learn - who knew riding a bike could be so darn difficult?!
In order to help you roll a bit faster on your journey, here are 5 of our top resources you might find useful as a newbie shredder.
Global Mountain Bike Network are prolific in their video content. With everything from basic bike maintenance to in-depth tech write-ups, GMBN is responsible for some of the best educational videos out there. As a beginner, there’s hours of fun to be had, sifting through the archives and learning about the sport; their top 10’s are particularly handy. We’ve linked a few of our favourite newbie videos to get you going:
You won’t get very far in MTB without the trusty Trailforks App. Well, you might, but Trailforks will get you further! Trailforks details practically every MTB trail in the WORLD. Yep, you read that right. If it’s been recognised as a trail, you’ll find it here along with a description and trail status updates from recent riders. It’s a place to go to discover, preview and select trails to ride.
Top Tip: download the trails where you’re heading so the app will function offline - there’s nothing worse than getting lost in a signal black spot and trying to guess in which direction you left the car.
What began as a joke to the antithesis of “extremebiking.com”, the somewhat less intimidating Pinkbike.com is a mecca for the latest in news, reviews, photos and videos and dubs itself “the biggest mountain bike community in the world”. Their race reports are some of the best and look out for Friday Fails to end the week in the right (or wrong!) way. If you like bikes, you’ll be welcome here.
Strava is an app for tracking your rides and, should you wish to, sharing your rides with others. You could even practice your “Strava art” if the mood takes you (although, note, this is almost impossible to do on actual trails!). Strava has been described as “the social network for athletes” but don’t let that put you off; used properly it can be a fantastic tool to aid your fitness. But be warned: it does have a dark side and has been known to take over lives if you let it. So, approach with caution. For those who like seeing the incremental improvements in their efforts it can be great, but if you end up coming off the bike disappointed you didn’t get a personal best “again!” well, it might be time to take a break.
Now you’ve got into mountain biking, you’re going to need a place to spend all your money on your new-found hobby! Chain reaction cycles is that place. With free worldwide delivery, this is a cave of treasures that will happily take your paycheck if you let it – don’t say we didn’t warn you!!
So, there you go. Five websites/apps that will propel you forward in your discovery of mountain biking and all its pleasures.
How about you? Do you have a go-to that you think should have made it onto our list? Drop a comment down below and let us know!