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Rec.Bicycles Frequently Asked Questions Posting Part 5/5
Section - 9.16 Trackstands

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                How to trackstand on a road bike.
	
	With acknowledgments to my trackstanding mentor,
 	             Neil Bankston.

  Practice, Practice, Practice, Practice, ....

  1. Wear tennis shoes.
  2. Find an open area, like a parking lot that has a slight grade to it.
  3. Put bike in a gear around a 42-18.
  4. Ride around out of the saddle in a counter-clockwise circle, about
     10 feet in diameter.

     Label Notation for imaginary points on the circle:
       'A' is the lowest elevation point on the circle.
       'B' is the 90 degrees counterclockwise from 'A' .
       'C' is the highest elevation point on the circle.
       'D' is the 90 degrees counterclockwise from 'C' .

        C
      /   \
     D     B       Aerial View 
      \   /
        A

   5. Start slowing down, feeling the different sensation as the bike
      transitions between going uphill (B) and downhill (D).
   6. Start trying to go real slowly through the A - B region of the circle.
      This is the region you will use for trackstanding.  Ride the rest of
      the circle as you were in step 5.
   
      The trackstanding position (aerial view again):

	       ---|   /
	------| |----/
           |---     /


      The pedal are in a 3 o'clock - 9 o'clock arrangement (in other
      words, parallel to the ground).  Your left foot is forward, your
      wheel is pointed left.  You are standing and shifting you weight
      to keep balance.  The key to it all is this:

	  If you start to fall left, push on the left pedal to move the
	  bike forward a little and bring you back into balance.

	  If you start to fall right, let up on the pedal and let the
	  bike roll back a little and bring you back into balance.

    7. Each time you roll through the A - B region, try to stop when
       the left pedal is horizontal and forward.  If you start to
       lose your balance, just continue around the circle and try it
       again.

    8. Play with it.  Try doing it in various regions in the circle,
       with various foot position, and various amounts of turn in your
       steering.  Try it on different amounts of slope in the
       pavement.  Try different gears.  What you are shooting for is
       the feel that's involved, and it comes with practice.

The why's of trackstanding:

  Why is road bike specified in the title?
      A true trackstand on a track bike is done differently.  A track
      bike can be pedaled backwards, and doesn't need a hill to
      accomplish the rollback affect.  Track racing trackstands
      are done opposite of what is described.  They take place on the
      C - D region of the circle, with gravity used for the roll
      forward, and back pedaling used for the rollback.  This is so
      that a racer gets the assist from gravity to get going again
      when the competition makes a move.

  Why a gear around 42-18?
      This is a reasonable middle between too small, where you would
      reach the bottom of the stroke on the roll forward, and too big,
      where you couldn't generate the roll forward force needed.

  Why is the circle counter-clockwise?
      Because I assume you are living in an area where travel is done
      on the right side of the road.  When doing trackstands on the road,
      most likely it will be at traffic lights.  Roads are crowned - higher
      in the middle, lower on the shoulders - and you use this crown as
      the uphill portion of the circle (region A-B).  If you are in a
      country where travel is done on the left side of the road,
      please interpret the above aerial views as subterranial.

  Why is this done out of the saddle?
      It's easier!!  It can be done in while seated, but you lose the
      freedom to do weight adjustments with your hips.

  Why is the left crank forward?
      If your right crank was forward, you might bump the front wheel
      with your toe.  Remember the steering is turned so that the back
      of the front wheel is on the right side of the bike.  Some bikes
      have overlap of the region where the wheel can go and your foot
      is.  Even if your current bike doesn't have overlap, it's better
      to learn the technique as described in case you are demonstrating
      your new skill on a bike that does have overlap.

  Why the A - B region?
      It's the easiest.  If you wait till the bike is around 'B', then
      you have to keep more force on the pedal to hold it still.  If
      you are around the 'A' point, there may not be enough slope to
      allow the bike to roll back.

Questions:

  What do I  do if I want to stop on a downhill?
      While there are techniques that can be employed to keep you in
      the pedals, for safety sake I would suggest getting out of the
      pedals and putting your foot down.

Other exercises that help:

    Getting good balance.  Work through this progression:
      1. Stand on your right foot.  Hold this until it feels stable.
      2. Close your eyes.  Hold this until it feels stable.
      3. Go up on your toes.  Hold this until it feels stable.
      4. If you get to here, never mind, your balance is already wonderful,
         else repeat with other foot.

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Top Document: Rec.Bicycles Frequently Asked Questions Posting Part 5/5
Previous Document: 9.15 Descending II
Next Document: 9.17 Front Brake Usage

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM