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Mastering Mountain Bike Skills - 2nd Edition Paperback – May 4, 2010
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"Undisputedly the best all-around world class cycling athlete."
"I love to mountain bike after a long season of races like the Tour de France and the Tour of California. Mastering Mountain Bike Skills has helped me to ride more safely and have more fun on the dirt, which improved my skills on and off road."
Levi Leipheimer -- 3x Tour of California Champion, Tour de France Stage Winner
"Brian has amazing fitness and superb skills. I always step it up a notch when I ride with him, and I know that anyone who reads Mastering Mountain Bike Skills will see improvement too!"
Willow Koerber -- Cross Country Bronze Medalist, UCI World Championships 2009
"Mastering Mountain Bike Skills by Brian Lopes is an essential read for any mountain biker. The expertise, advice, and insight he shares in this book are guaranteed to take your riding to the next level.”
Steve Peat -- 2009 DH World Champion
About the Author
With over 15 years as a professional mountain biker, the name Brian Lopes is synonymous with American Mountain Bike racing. Since his professional debut back in 1993, Brian has been a constant presence on race podiums worldwide. With over 25 World Cup wins, four World Championship titles, and nine National Champion titles in both DH and Dual Slalom, Brian holds the most World Cup “wins” out of any male racer to date, and is recognized as the winningest American pro mountain biker.
In 2008 his winning-ways were recognized, as Brian was inducted into both the Mountain Bike and BMX Hall of Fame.
Having raced BMX for most of his childhood, Brian learned how to ride a bike at the tender age of 4, turning Pro at the age of 17 and competing in the BMX circuit for 7 years before channeling all his efforts to mountain biking. He has appeared on EuroSport, Universal Sports, CBS Sports, Outdoor Life Network and has graced the covers of every major national and international mountain biking magazine, including Mountain Bike Action, MBUK, Dirt, Bicycling, VeloNews, and Mountain Biking, and has received coverage in such mainstream media as Men’s Health, Rolling Stone, and USA Today.
Brian currently has various signature mountain bike products: TLD knee guards, Bell helmet, Kenda tires, WTB bike seat and a signature Sportsmobile design. Other career highlights include being nominated as ESPYs Extreme Athlete of the Year and starring as himself in Playstation’s video game Downhill Domination.
Lopes resides in Laguna Beach, California, with his wife, Paula.
Lee McCormack is the world’s leading technique instructor and uses his own sequential teaching curriculum to coach riders of all types and levels—from homemakers to pro downhillers—to ride better, safer, and faster. He is a journalist who has written for Bike, Mountain Bike Action, Twentysix, Flow, and Mountain Biking. He also publishes www.leelikesbikes.com, a mountain biking Web site visited by thousands of readers worldwide.
McCormack has won numerous writing and informational graphics awards at the state and regional levels and was part of the team that won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for public service. Lee has been a bike nut for over 20 years and enjoys all riding disciplines from single-track to road to dirt jumps and pump tracks. McCormack lives in Boulder, Colorado, with his wife, Arlette, and four children: Kate, Ian, and twins Finley and Fiona.
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Top Customer Reviews
Reading through this book, I identified with many of the techniques that Lee and Brian describe. Many I picked up very young from the BMX days and some I learned from the MTB experiences. Since I no longer race and all my trail riding is for fun the seriousness of it all is not the same, but the skill level is still a goal. I was pleased to see that many things I do now are considered (at least as I took it) as fundamental in the skill set one needs to be a "good" rider.
There are several parts of this book that I'm using as a guide for techniques that I need to work on, namely jumping. I've never been much of a jumper and trial and error when leaving the ground is (IMO) a painful way to get better at this particular skill. I quickly realized when reading this book some of the mistakes I've been making for a long time. Take offs were in the wrong position, eyeing the gap and being way to stiff in the air. It all makes perfect sense and it's a part of my riding that will take time to learn correctly.
A recurring theme in this book is how they describe to ride "pedals heavy and hands loose" This is a common mistake that newb's to the sport make, they death grip the bars and don't keep enough weight on their legs. Sounds simply enough, but it's a universal mistake that's made by beginners and something I always teach when I take a new person to the trails.
I did notice a few of the reviews were a little negative towards some of the lingo used by the authors. All of it made perfect sense to me (Yes, hauling the mail = hauling a$$), but I've been around bikes and riding for a very long time. Keep an open mind and your sense of humor, as there are some witty parts to this book. It would be boring if it were written any other way!
One thing I definitely noticed is I could tell when the different author(s) were writing their respective parts of the book or sections. Lee definitely has the coaching point of view to his prose and Brian has the racer/hardcore side of it.
If you take just one thing away from this book, it's the section on FLOW. Read it, learn it, practice it and enjoy it. Once you really learn how to read a trail and use it to your advantage (as opposed to fighting it or working against it) riding becomes so much more enjoyable. In closing, unless you're a really high level rider or pro, there's something in this book that will help you get to the next level. Definitely worth the price and a great read.
I always enjoyed riding though but got stuck in a rut. I read quite a few useless books during that time. Then I discovered MBUK Magazine, bought Trials ace Martyn Ashtons book, ditched my SPD pedals and lycra outfit and started over from scratch, learning the basics on flats and with knee pads. Track stand, hops etc. etc. Trail riding became a lot more fun.
I stumbled over Lees Facebook page one day and there was a piece on suspension and riding a bigger wave. What he wrote made instant sense. I'm an engineer but in this case, someone just needed to nudge my brain pattern. A lot fell into place. I went out and tried his advice 'heavy feet, light hands' to great effect. There was flow!
So I got the book. I reckon, even if I read ten or twenty books before, there will be something new in this book thats worth while. I went through it in a few days.
As I write this, I've just been out riding and messing around with the 'attack position' on a familiar piece of trail. I tried it going down a set of stairs and some steep descents. It worked flawlessly. I went down stuff that scared me before with unbelievable ease and I went over lumps and bumps smoothly. I had to try it again and then again. I forgot myself briefly and went back to my old ways and promptly hit the ground.
I'm gonna re-read and practice and yeah, there will be 'braaaap'.
So, this book is really good. I wish someone gave it to me years ago. I spent so many years doing stuff plain wrong or just not knowing.