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Trouble with CX remounts(6 posts)

Trouble with CX remountsPirateGirl
Aug 25, 2003 3:00 PM
I started practicing my CX skills yesterday for this season, which doesn't start here in the SW until December. Last year I did the local CX race series, and had a blast. I figured I'd work on my skills a few months before the season to try to get better for this year. My dismounts are pretty good. But getting back on the bike is where I'm having trouble. I find myself doing a little jump, finding the seat with my inside right thigh, and then doing a second little hop with my left foot to get on all the way. Not one big leap of faith into the saddle. I'm hardly gazelle-like doing it this way. But I'm lacking the confidence to just fly right into the saddle for fear of smashing the womanly parts (a chamois offers very little protection).

Is this something to just keep practicing and eventually I'll get it? (Either that, or by the end I will have been fairly intimate with the seat and/or top tube). Any advice on learing the CX remounts?


re: Trouble with CX remountsatpjunkie
Aug 25, 2003 6:32 PM
do them slowly and then speed up. as long as you land on the inner thigh you'll be okay. Stutter step is quite common, you are not alone. It's just a skill that is learned over long repetition. I have found if my body leans forward so my legs are slightly behind me it helps. I'm no expert though, any other advice out there?
Here's what I didtriangleforge
Aug 26, 2003 5:59 AM
Like any bad habit, stutter-stepping just becomes more ingrained the more you do it. Here's what worked to break me of a bad case of it...

1) Technique -- watching videos of the pros, I noticed that a lot of them almost look like they're clicking their heels together as they hop back on. I found that it helped me to concentrate on bending the left knee right after take-off, as if I were trying to touch my heel to my butt. Exaggerating this motion a bit in practice basically means you can't put that foot back on the ground, no matter what! Of course, it does take some confidence & will to over-ride that self preservation instinct, so start slow...

2) But not TOO Slow! You'll have to stutter-step if you mount so slowly that you're not fully in the saddle with enough momentum to keep the bike upright. Boost the speed as quickly as your confidence allows. You'll find it gets easier to do it right as your speed goes up -- and then your speed goes up because you're doing it right!

3) Once you can do it sans stutter-step once or twice out of five attempts, it's time for boot camp. I went out to a local grassy spot about 20 yards long, and then went back and forth; U-turn, dismount, re-mount, U-turn, dismount, re-mount... After about forty-five minutes of that, I'd achieved my goal: 50 consecutive mounts without a stutter step. It was gone, and it hasn't come back since.

4) To keep the motion in your mind & muscles, do a 'cross re-mount or something like it every time you get on a bike. Of course, I don't do a full-tilt sprint seatpost-bender in metal-bottom Speedplay cleats every time I leave the coffee house on my road bike, but two walking steps and rolling up onto the saddle keeps the process in my head. It also gets you in the habit of finding the pedals without looking down. It's even easier on a full-suspension MTB, since the saddle gives when you land on it at full-speed ;-) In fact, if you have access to a double-boing MTB, that might be a handy way to practice & build your confidence in your re-mount before you take it back to the rigid Cross bike.

Good Luck!
re: Trouble with CX remountsvarmit
Aug 26, 2003 8:19 AM
It sounds like you have the basic idea mastered. On your remount hop, try to land the upper rear thigh, just below the hip, on the saddle. As you square your upper body with the bike, your butt will almost automatically shift the last little bit to the right as you pedal away. You control the landing point on the saddle with more or less arm extension - This just takes a little mental "burn in" to remember the correct reach on a remount. Also, a good dismount will set you up for a clean remount. It seems that if I fumble a dismount, I will be sloppy on the remount.

A good drill for this skill is to set up a short loop(50 to 75 yards) with a double or triple barrier (Anything that you can improvise for barriers will work.)Do repeats on this loop for 30 to 45 minutes. Speed is not as important initially as technique. This give you a great skill drill and a hard cross workout.

Good luck at the races!
Lower your saddleSabine
Aug 26, 2003 3:28 PM
a little to give you confidence, and then raise it again when you have the motion figured out.
Thanks all!PirateGirl
Aug 27, 2003 8:00 PM
I'll definitely try some of these tips. I want to get out of the "stutter step" habit before it becomes a real bad habit.

Practice, practice, practice...