Tips on hopping, 360's


Re Steve Dressler’s queries:

Steve Dressler <> wrote:

  1. I’m interested in jumping off a ramp, and doing
    > either a 180 or 360 degree rotation in the air before landing. The distance
    > issue is not key, just the visual aspect of a spin while jumping and then
    > landing safely and elegantly enough to continue a routine.
    > P.S. Any others tried this?

I’ve never yet managed to ride off a ramp and do a 180 or 360, but I often do
360’s off of structures from a standing start. I stand on the pedals, facing
sideways to the drop. In my case, my left side is towards the drop. I start by
gently twisting clockwise, and then fall backwards off the obstacle, and spin
clockwise, initially spinning towards the obstacle. I usually land facing away
from the obstacle (making it more of a 270 than 360). Higher drops make it
easier to do (within reason of course), but it is quite easy to land rather hard
on your cranks, making axle breakage a real possibility with this trick. It
makes a great exit off the top of of a picnic table!

A fun variant on this is to try to do this move up and down flights of stairs,
spinning 180 degrees every time you go up or down a step. The extra challenge
of steps is that it is a bit intimidating to spin so that you are facing down
the steps when halfway through the spin (much easier to spin so you are facing
up the steps when halfway through the spin)

Although all of my experience is with a 26" wheel, I assume that the above would
probably work a lot better on a small diameter wheel.

2) Since YOU are the master of UNI AIR, any hints??

In my experience, the terrain you are landing on dictates how you jump off

If there is good roll-out terrain below the drop, I think that it is very
effective to keep the wheel rolling both when riding towards the drop, and also
upon landing. Grabbing the seat with one hand, roll off the lip of the drop such
that your feet pass through vertical just before you go off the drop (if you are
confident, you can ride off any old way, and adjust your foot position mid
flight). Land with the rear foot just back from vertical, and roll into the
horizontal power position. Keep the wheel rolling, and hinge forward at the
waist to absorb shock. Ideally, practice landing with either foot back, so you
don’t develop a dominant foot. There is a good video demo of me doing this at
Daniel Hopkin’s website, at

If you are less confident, or the takeoff area is small, hop around at the
lip of the drop until you are ready to go, and then jump off the edge,
landing as above.

If there is no room to roll out of the drop (say you are dropping onto a
boulder, or a log), it is sometimes better to drop with the seat out in front.
Hold the seat out front (with one hand on the side of the seat), and drop down,
doing a deep knee bend upon landing to absorb shock. It is difficult to land on
a sloping surface with this method. Look for concave depressions to land in,
such as a narrow gap between two boulders (if you are manouvering through a
boulder field) or the gap between two logs (if, say, you are moving through
piled up logs). Concave depressions support the wheel forward-backward, and make
it way easier to land in control.

Anticipate the terrain you are landing on BEFORE you launch. If you are
launching down steep, tight spots, also be very aware of where your pedals are,
so you can avoid catching them on things.

Hope this helps.


> At 08:56 PM 8/22/99 -0700, you wrote:
> >Ramps may be tough to get distance on, but I’ve
> personally found that
> >it’s easiest to get more distance using a straight
> ramp with a “kicker”
> >at the end, ie. a small bump at the lip of the
> jump. If you hit the
> >kicker with your feet in the ideal position
> (dominant foot down and
> >slightly back)and a hand pulling up on the seat,
> I’ve found that I can
> >get some upwards momentum and lots more distance.
> They don’t have a
> >kicker and are a bit dangerous, but airing a flight
> of stairs is a fun
> >way to try to get big air and distance.
> >
> >More than ramps, I think that dropping in on half
> pipes and skateboard
> >bowls is a blast- I could do that all day!
> >
> >-kris.
> >
> >

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