All you young guns out there need to read this , it really helps with your riding to do a bit of training on flat pedals , if you don’t believe me then maybe Mike Day can persuade you.
Go Flat-Out on Flat Pedals
By Mike Day
Have you tried doing a gate with flat pedals lately? If so, I bet you got set up like you usually do, and did your regular snap– and on your second pedal, your foot came flying off. That’s what happens to me every time I do a gate on flats after a long time without riding them. We’re clipped in to get power on that up-stroke, so it’s a good sign my foot flies-off. But sometimes, it’s good to revisit your flat pedals. I wouldn’t recommend riding them all the time, but here are a few reasons it’s good from time to time.
When we are clipped-in, the last thing we’re thinking about is good form. It doesn’t really matter how bad our form is, we’ll still get down the first straight with pretty-decent efficiency. Try going to the track on flats and see how hard it is to have that same first straight. You will spend a lot of time thinking about your form, your foot placement on the pedal, and pedal-force, straight into the pedals. Imagine having that form every time with your clip pedals! We get so used to not having to think about good pedaling form, that we pick up bad habits, which are very difficult to drop.
We have all figured out the key to BMX is the holeshot, and the first 10 cranks. But if we’re practicing bad techniques it doesn’t matter. No question, being clipped-in is faster, but if you practice on flats at the track twice a month, concentrating on proper form, you will find it much better when you clip in on race day. Good form, with a powerful up-stroke in the clips is a win/win!
Most important, riding flats teaches you to ride your bike the “right” way. More and more, I see brand new kids at the track riding clipped-in, even before they can balance in the gate. They learn to jump by pulling their feet straight-up. The USA BMX rule banning clips for Novices really helped this problem, but some dads still have the clips on for practice day. Spend some time putting in work on flats and see how much better you get when you put your clips back on.
Remember when we talked about box sprints in a past #WinningWednesdays? These sprints are perfect to do on flats. As you all know sometimes training can be a grind and get very repetitive so it’s refreshing to throw something new into the mix every once in a while. Have fun, and don’t slip any pedals out there!