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Gap jump with a 180° twist


There are plenty of cool variations of the pedal hop. It's one thing to cross a gap in a straight line, but in some biketrials situations, you won't have any room for landing frontaly. One option is to turn in the air, while crossing a gap, and land in a different direction that will allow a proper landing, or ease the next step. You can turn by twisting your whole body from the waist up, before take off from a rear wheel position.

A spiralling extension

trials riding tutorials Move your hips off-centre from the bike as you kick.

Without support for the front tyre, you will have to launch a spiralling extension, trying to look back as your shoulders build up the spinning momentum. This is definitely not easy, but you will find this technique very useful for 90° turns, as a tactical change of direction or to reposition yourself to face a big drop.

Try this on a kerb or target a line on the ground. It is usually easier to turn on your front foot side (clockwise if you are right-foot forward or anti-clockwise if you are left-foot forward). Use as much bouncing effect as you can from tyre compression.


Understanding the move

trials riding tutorials Kenny Belaey turns by 90 degrees.

Like for any plain pedal kick, balance over the rear wheel before you lower the front. As you kick, move off-centre from the bike, opposite your front foot to turn on the same side. Start your jump impulse by swinging the bars to your front foot side and build as much rotational inertia as you can with your hips and shoulders.

As you kick in the pedal, finish up your extension with a twist of your hips, spiralling upward with your torso before you take-off the rear wheel. In mid-air pull up the bike with you and follow your shoulders' rotation. Control the bike's rotation with your kicking leg fully stretched.

Then try to swing the bike in front of you before you land, using as much grip as you can from the pedals to land straight. Even if you land twisted, try to absorb the impact for a smooth landing, and use the first tyre rebound to correct your balance. You can chain up these transitions to bounce around for fun.


Click on any step below and use the scroll-wheel to move through the animation.

Gap jump with a 180° twist

trials riding tutorials
1° Like for any plain pedal kick, balance over the rear wheel before you lower the front.

trials riding tutorials
2° As you kick, move off-centre from the bike, opposite your front foot to turn on the same side.

trials riding tutorials
3° Start your jump impulse by swinging the bars to your front foot side and build as much rotational inertia as you can with your hips.

trials riding tutorials
4° Finish up your extension with a twist of your hips, spiralling upward with your torso before you take-off the rear wheel.

trials riding tutorials
5° In mid-air pull up the bike with you and follow your shoulders' rotation. Control the bike's rotation with your kicking leg fully stretched.

trials riding tutorials
6° Then try to swing the bike in front of you before you land, using as much grip as you can from the pedals to land straight.


Biketrial video Watch all the slow-motion video clips for this move Biketrial video


Getting a good start is essential
Don't wait to be in mid-air to pull on the handlebars. The whole turn is "programmed" during take-off. Turning 180° is the most difficult, but aim first at small angles up to 90 degrees to feel the move.

You can turn in both directions, though it is typically easier to turn on your front foot side because your weight distribution is not symmetrical during the move, and you are already leaning on this side when you kick in the pedal. So it only takes a little extra effort to spin the bike along your stretched-leg axis.


Choose your side
Turning in the opposite direction (on your back foot side) is usually more difficult as you would be trying to rotate around an axis off-centred from your centre of gravity and that makes it really weird for turns larger than 90 degrees, unless you perform the move backwards. It is important to build up enough rotational inertia during your jump impulse.

Then you can fine-tune your landing in a precise direction by realigning the bike more or less beneath you. Remember that the bike only represents about 10% the total mass moving around (rider + bike), so it will follow pretty much any momentum you can build with body language during your take-off.


180° spin to front wheel

trials riding tutorials Aim to land your front wheel first.

Launching a pedal hop sideways from a trackstand position, parallel to a gap, you can add a twist to your transition with 180° of spin to land onto the other side, facing the opposite direction. Again for this move, turning on your front foot side will be easier as you can optimize your body language for momentum and weight transfer.

It is a very classy turn that finishes on the front wheel or on both wheels at the same time. You could even try to land on the rear wheel and carry-on spinning, though this works best on a mod or on a short 24" bike.


Turn on your front foot side

trials riding tutorials Practise over a fake gap.

Align your wheels along the edge of the obstacle with the gap on your front foot side. Maintain the trackstand until you are ready to commit to this move. Pre-load the front pedal and crouch on the bike to get ready for an extension. Turn the bars away from the gap and lean your hips slightly off-balance over the gap.

Start your extension with a swing of the handlebars to initiate the rotation over the gap and as you kick your front pedal, finish up with a twist of your shoulders, spiralling upward in a turn to face the gap. In mid-air pull up the bike with you, following your shoulders' rotation, and spin the bike over your driving leg to complete the rotation. Aim the front wheel at the other side, front brake locked and realign the bike with your torso, using as much grip as you can from the pedals. After initial touch-down with the front tyre, bring the rear wheel back and land firmly on both wheels. Flex upon landing to absorb the impact and land smooth.


Click on any step below and use the scroll-wheel to move through the animation.

180° spin to front wheel

trials riding tutorials
1° Align your wheels along the edge of the obstacle with the gap on your front foot side and maintain the trackstand until ready.

trials riding tutorials
2° As you preload your front pedal, turn the bars away from the gap and lean your hips slightly off-balance over the gap.

trials riding tutorials
3° Start your extension with a swing of the handlebars to initiate the rotation over the gap and as you kick your front pedal.

trials riding tutorials
4° Finish up with a twist of your shoulders, spiralling upward in a turn to face the gap. In mid-air pull up the bike with you.

trials riding tutorials
5° Spin the bike over your driving leg to complete the rotation while aiming the front wheel at the other side, front brake locked.

trials riding tutorials
6° After initial touch-down with the front tyre, bring the rear wheel in line with the edge and land firmly on both wheels.


Some of the best riders out there land that technique on very narrow edges. Another cool option is to follow up with a wheel-swap to back wheel and carry on spinning. At this stage, you are wandering on the dark side of freestyle-tainted trials.

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