Mountain Biking is best done over longer distances - spending hours and hours out on the mountain bike is how you can access the very best, remote areas, as well as get the maximum benefits from the exercise. Mountain Biking does not always go to plan however, and there’s a number of things you can do to keep yourself in the saddle, long enough to get the most of your sport.
Check Your Bike Over
One of the biggest obstacles to a great day out mountain biking is a problem with your bike, which is really easily avoided by simple checks and maintenance. Before heading out on a ride, check the components of your bike, check the brake pads and ensure nothing is loose. It’s also worth taking a couple of minutes to check your bike’s tyres as well - check that the tyres are in good condition and also that there is enough pressure in the tyres. If you are not confident with your way around a mountain bike, stick to regular servicing to ensure it never lets you down.
Buy the Right Gear
If you are planning on riding out over long distances, you need to have the right equipment and clothing for all day riding. Weather conditions are very changeable, especially across varying terrain - always check the weather forecast but do prepare for the unexpected. Waterproof clothing should always be packed, with a range of excellent technical MTB wear available.
Pack a Bag
For longer rides, a backpack is essential wear. It needs to be full of everything you may need for your journey. As well as packing some emergency rations, a backpack allows you to safely carry essentials such as car keys and money. Some MTB backpacks feature extra protection for your back in case of an accident, whilst all have been designed to offer maximum levels of comfort and adjustability.
Plan your Ride & Route
One of the key parts to a successful day in the saddle, is understanding where you are riding and at what points you want to stop and take breaks. Ensure that if you are riding alone, somebody knows where you are travelling in the event of an accident/emergency.
Padded Shorts & Comfortable Saddles
As you ride for longer and longer, you will naturally become more comfortable in the saddle - but it’s still important to wear and use equipment which keeps you comfortable on rides. Padded MTB shorts are a must, as is a saddle you are comfortable sitting on for long periods of time.
Using tubeless tyres is an ideal way to prevent one of the most annoying things that disrupt a ride - a puncture. Tubeless tyres allow you to ride further, uninterrupted.
Train for Longer Rides
Do not think that a long mountain bike ride will just happen, you need to train up to longer distances. Before you head out for a long and challenging bike ride, have a few days off beforehand to leave your body in the best condition.