Riding an electric bike is fun and can bring many benefits compared to standard bikes. Riding an electric mountain bike can be a rewarding experience. However, not everyone knows how to ride electric mountain bikes.
According to research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, if the number of trips taken on electric bikes increases to 15%, there will be 40,000 fewer deaths per year due to cardiovascular diseases in the United States. This is incentive enough to learn how to ride electric mountain bikes.
How to Ride Electric Mountain Bikes
If you are already familiar with the components of your electric mountain bike, then you need to know how to use them.
However, before we dive into the specifics, you must first learn how to ride electric mountain bikes. Below are general things you need to know to become a good electric mountain bike rider.
How to Get on an Electric Mountain Bike
You first need to get on the bike before learning how to ride electric mountain bikes.
First, mount the bike. Lower the seat post, hold on to one of the brakes, and swing your leg over the seat, positioning your bottom on the seat without putting your feet on the pedal.
Then, position one foot on the pedal and ride off, positioning the second as you go. It would be best if you placed your foot in a position so that the top of the foot is resting on the pedal. Make sure that it is straight and not tilting into the bike.
Then, when holding on to the grip, ensure that your thumb is behind the grip. Sticking one finger out towards the bike can also be helpful.
How to Ride Electric Mountain Bikes Up a Hill
Most electric mountain bike riders tend to customize their electric mountain bikes to be able to go down a hill smoothly and neglect the climbing part of their ride.
One thing to remember about climbing a hill on your electric mountain bike is that power is not everything. It does not matter how much force your electric mountain bike puts in. What matters is control.
Below are some tips on how to ride electric mountain bikes up a hill.
When you ride your electric mountain bike on a hill and the slope increases, your riding position can make a lot of difference.
Positioning yourself in a centralized and upright position will make it easier to climb steep hills as it allows for more extended reach and pushes your weight forward onto the wheel, over the bottom bracket. Simultaneously, this position will keep your posterior away from the rear wheel.
The upright position prevents the front wheel from coming up and provides more traction to the rear wheel.
Some riders drop the saddle to a lower height to make it easier for the feet to push the pedals quicker, while others tend to raise the saddle to a greater height to allow full extension of the legs.
In both cases, you will be significantly uncomfortable, and your knees can take damage.
Generally, the saddle height should be to a point where your leg is straight when the crank arm is at the bottom but not fully extended.
The saddle is too high if your heel breaks contact with the pedal as you ride. Lowering your saddle brings your weight forward and helps you gain traction on both wheels.
Bar and Stem Height
If the bars are too low or forwards, it can cause the rear wheel to spin out and puts too much weight on the front wheel.
If the bar is set up too high or back, it can reduce the control on the front wheel and cause it to pull up from the ground.
An increased stem height can allow better traction on the front wheel without compromising the bike’s handling. Wide bars can help to put more weight on the front wheel to prevent it from pulling up.
Electric mountain bikes have full suspension and lockout and climbing modes. These features reduce the turbulence felt when riding on a rough hill.
Once the trails become rough, better traction becomes required for a smooth ride. Activate the features on your electric mountain bike to improve the bike’s suspension and reduce the bumps, providing better control and traction.
A common misunderstanding among beginners is that the more pressure the tire has, the better the bike performs.
However, a softer tire with less pressure will perform better on rough trails to provide better traction as you climb hills. Such tires can conform appropriately to the track and increase tire grip on the trail, even in dewy conditions.
Electric mountain bikes come with seven to eight gears, and knowing which gear to choose is essential to learning how to ride electric mountain bikes.
At steeper hills, lower gears that provide 80-90 rpm are better as faster spinning can result in loss of traction, while too slow can cause you to put in more energy.
How to Ride Electric Mountain Bikes Down a Hill
Once you’ve climbed up a hill, you’re bound to descend it. Although fun, descending a hill can be dangerous if not done correctly.
Descending electric mountain bikes down a hill is essential to learning how to ride electric mountain bikes.
Below are some tips on how to ride electric mountain bikes down a hill.
As mentioned before, your position on an electric mountain bike can determine how efficiently the bike rides.
Put your weight back when descending down a hill on an electric bike. This prevents the rear wheel from springing up and toppling the bike over.
Bend your knees and elbows to give you more control over the bike, and keep your heels pointed downwards.
Leave the rest to the electric mountain bike. Do not hold the handlebars too tightly, and keep your arms and legs relaxed. This makes your body function as a suspension system, increasing control and agility on the bike.
Seat height can significantly affect your electric mountain bike’s descending capabilities.
Drop the seat to a lower height to allow you to put your weight back and keep the bike balanced. Generally, mountain bikes with dropper posts and handlebar levers help change the seat height mid-descend.
Alternatively, you can manually lower the seat height before the descent. Putting your weight back keeps the bike in contact with the trail and prevents your bike from toppling over.
As previously mentioned, mountain electric bikes come with suspension technology that needs to be used to the fullest extent.
The suspension system improves the bike’s traction and keeps the bike contacted with the ground. It also helps you lower your weight and maintain the bike steady as you ride over rough terrain, rocks, roots, and other obstacles.
You might hear people say they lose themselves in nature and riding an electric mountain bike, helping them forget their worries.
While descending an electric mountain bike can help you forget your worries, it’s only by giving you new and different ones.
It would be best if you kept yourself attentive while you descend a hill. Look out for big rocks or obstructions, and point your bike toward a smoother trail.
Braking is the trickiest part of descending and an essential skill to master when learning how to ride electric mountain bikes.
It is crucial to brake at the right time and the right amount. Braking too softly would not slow down your bike in time while braking too much can create an inertia that pulls the rear wheel above.
Only brake when you wish to slow down and try to brake softly at regular intervals. Keep your weight shifted to the rear wheel when you brake to keep your bike on the ground.
General Tips on How to Ride Electric Mountain Bikes
Below are some general tips you can follow to learn how to ride electric mountain bikes and become a master at the craft.
Know Your Electric Mountain Bike
Before learning how to ride electric mountain bikes, you must be familiar with the bike itself. That is to say, what components are in the electric mountain bike, and how to use them.
Battery and Motor
The battery and motor are essential for any electric mountain bike. The motor is responsible for the fastest speed of the bike, while the battery is responsible for the functioning.
Generally, electric mountain bikes can reach speeds of 15 to 40 miles per hour, and even more in some bikes. An electric mountain bike can travel 20 to 50 miles on a complete charge.
It would be best to keep an eye on your battery to ensure enough charge to go back; otherwise, you will have to pedal down the hill and back home.
Furthermore, an electric mountain bike battery needs to be changed every three to five years for your electric bike to function efficiently.
The electric mountain bike comes with various power modes. The most common modes include pedal assist mode, eco mode, trail mode, and turbo mode.
Pedal Assist Mode
Pedal-assist mode is a widely used mode in electric mountain bikes. The mountain puts power into turning the pedals, making it easier for you and increasing the bike’s speed.
Pedal-assist mode is helpful when you are climbing up a hill or if you’re too tired to pedal manually. However, it also uses up battery power, so be sure to keep a lookout.
Eco mode is used mainly for slow trail rides where you ride to pass the time. The slow-speed mode isn’t the best for climbing hills or rough trails but for smooth rides.
Trail mode gives you the best of every bike component and is a perfect blend of battery and motor power, allowing you to ride far and smoothly on your favorite trails.
Turbo mode gives the electric mountain bike a power boost and should be used in extreme conditions such as steep hills or rough terrains.
Turbo mode drains your battery, and you must be careful when using it for long periods.
Electric mountain bikes consist of two brakes, the rear brake, and the front brake. These brakes are heavier than in standard electric bikes.
One of the worst things to do when learning how to ride electric mountain bikes is to fully press the brake lever to come to a halt. Additionally, the rear and front brakes need to be used in tandem for efficient braking.
When turning a corner or curve, brake before the junction and not while the bike is turning. Slow down before entering the corner so you don’t have to brake.
Secondly, if the corner goes into a descent, you need to go into a more complex gear, as mentioned above.
While turning, ensure that the inside pedal toward the ground is positioned above so as not to hit the ground.
Keep Your Eyes on the Trail
An excellent electric mountain bike rider is known to be aware of their surrounding. This includes keeping an eye out for any obstruction on the trail, such as rocks or large roots that can cause considerable damage if not careful.
The trail needs to be studied carefully, especially if you are ascending or descending a hill, whether the path has any obstructions, if it is slippier or wet due to dew, or if the trail is rough or smooth.
One of the crucial things to look out for is pedal strikes. Certain rocks, roots, or obtrusions can catch onto the pedal and cause considerable problems.
Additionally, look out for any woodland creatures. Most trailing areas do not have dangerous animals, but small animals like the rodent family need to be looked out for. Turning your bike at fast speeds abruptly to avoid hitting an animal can lead to accidents.
There are many steps involved in learning how to ride electric mountain bikes. However, you’ll be a top electric mountain bike rider
once you know the abovementioned tips and guidelines.
After reading this article, the best thing is to practice. Practice makes perfect, and it’s more accurate when learning how to ride electric mountain bikes.
My name is Matthew, staying in Seattle, Washington. Electric Vehicles (Electric Cars & Electric bikes) caught my attention for the last few years and my love for electric cars and bikes is everlasting. I spend many of my weekends traveling to various places all over various cities with my electric vehicle (e-bike and electric car). Here I am sharing my expertise, experience, and invaluable information about electric cars and electric bikes. Check out more.