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5 Methods For Stopping On Your New Fixie Bike

Aug 29th 2015 at 1:30 PM

The most popular and common question for new riders and non-riders alike is how do you stop when riding your Fixie bike? The Fixie is the term given for bicycles which are the most basically designed and built regarding material and construction - very simplistic. This type of bike has no freewheel and only operates using one speed, the human machine. Although many are built with brakes on both the front and rear wheels, many owners prefer not to have brakes at all and some only prefer to have front brakes. Historically, the Fixie have been traditionally used for track racing, long after most other bikes had switched to using freewheels.

You will commonly find the Fixie being used exclusively in a velodrome. The velodrome is an arena for indoor track cycling and includes steeply banked oval tracks. The incline consists of two 180-degree circular bends connected by two straights. The straights transition to the circular turn through a moderate easement curve. Now, imagine a race, a dangerous one at that, in which the rider in front of you could brake suddenly. You would crash into them, and likely most of the group behind you would join in the fun similarly like falling dominoes.

Before deciding to remove your Fixie brakes, consult the local laws regarding safety for bike riders - some countries require that the bike have at least one brake and other countries require all brakes and helmets to be worn too. It's better to be safe then try to look cool and get injured.

With so much to consider, your purchase of a Fixie is important and so are the options you have to choose from and your unique style. To ensure that you get the best deal in Ireland and the straight scoop on cycling from experts, consult directly with the pros located at BikesorBicycles.com in Dublin!

Before embarking on your first road trip or just taking a little spin around the neighborhood, you should become very familiar with the braking mechanisms of our brake and the various methods in which to apply them. The best way to ensure the safety of yourself and others is to practice. There are five common methods for stopping when riding your Fixie. These include: using brakes, the hop stop, skid stopping, the skip stop, and the kamikaze stop:

Brakes - by far the best and most safe method to stop your ride is to employ the brakes. Having them doesn't always mean having to use them but, just like insurance, you'll want them when it's absolutely necessary or it could mean your life or a severe injury.

The most obvious and preferred means to stopping your bike is to gradually and smoothly apply both of your brakes and, in turn, this will quickly bring the bike to a short and safe stop. However, when you must stop immediately, you should apply all of your brakes rapidly to achieve an abrupt stop for your safety and others as well.

The Hop Stop - just as the name implies, this method requires that you make the bike hop so as to stop or quickly slow down. This is similar to the skid technique except that it's different. With your feet strapped in to your pedals, you will lift up with the foot that is on the pedal descending while unseated, and lifting up with your other foot a bit, so as to lift your rear wheel into the air slightly.

Skid Stopping - this method will definitely lead to the chewing up of your tires so eventually they will have to be replaced. This is a very uncontrolled way to stop because you leave everything to chance. You first start by leaning forward on the bike and relieving the weight on the rear wheel. If you have the balance to lift the rear wheel ever-so-slightly off the ground, even better. When the rear wheel traction is no longer applicable, you use your feet to lock the pedals in a horizontal position. While pushing down on the pedal coming up, pull up on the pedal going down. This explains the point of having to attach your feet to the pedals and why it's important. This will cause the rear wheel to a stop so shifting weight back onto the rear wheel should cause the rear tire to skid, causing the bike to slow to a stop.

There are some key notes to take regarding a bike that is strapless or having no foot straps. This technique requires that you position yourself over the handle bars and while leaning far forward, at the same time, you are going to lock your knee and leg against the upward pressure of your pedal.

Skip Stop - if you're riding and you've gotten up to speed, you must first rise up out of your saddle which takes all of the weight off the rear wheel. Keep in mind that the forward foot is used to pickup back wheel by "pulling up", stopping it in mid-air and the other foot is used to "push down" the rear wheel - during the pedal stroke, feet parallel to ground, use your dominant leg and push towards the ground while pulling other leg up and keep knees inward for better control.

Kamikaze stop - this is the very last resort in stopping our ride. When all else fails and you have no other means in which to stop or you have not enough time to react and make drastic changes to avoid injury or possibly death, try the Kamikaze method. Basically, no practice is need and you really don't have a technique except to have the ability to launch your body off the bike before making impact to another obstacle including cars and people.

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